Harx Kalsi, another London-based runner and Strava member, said: “I show off me, this is me. I have rubbish runs, I have great runs, like, this is what happens. This is who I am, and I am sharing that with you, whether you like it or not. I think it’s also showing other runners and cyclists, that you should just be yourself, you don’t need to be crazy, you don’t need to be doing mad miles, or you don’t need to be running this quick. Just have fun with it.”
Strava’s self-styled tagline is ‘the social network for athletes’, so this campaign aims to bring this proposition to life.
The campaign films, co-directed by Mike Brett and Steve Jamison, have a documentary feel and blend earthy, real footage with a sense of style and panache.
The brand may like to think of itself as a simple champion of pure, unadulterated, honest sport for its own sake, but we can’t help but wonder whether Strava could have offered more of an incentive – a reward mechanic – in order to drive posting and generate active participation.
Plus, we wish the initial athlete image posts were a bit more gritty, awkward and dirty.
But we certainly admire the creative and support the objective.
Not least because mobile app amateur athlete social networks – whether they be focused on training, tracking, or tips – face their own set of challenges when it comes to ‘keeping it real’.
After all, just like in the worlds of pro cycling and pro athletics, there are plenty of stories of digital doping and E(lectronic)PO being used by athletes too desperate to break Strava time records and scoop King of the Mountains accolades.
The new initiative campaign replaces the brand’s previous ‘Strive’ campaign which ran in 2016 and included a previous online video series that included a hero video,and around 30 supporting shorter spots.