Vans Introduces TV Campaign

Coming mid-June, Vans, Inc., will explode into the next wave of commercial programming with a revolutionary advertising campaign that breaks traditional marketing strategies. These three television spots are sure to make viewers rise from their couches and take notice.

Filmed in San Francisco and Los Angeles by respected skateboarding and surfing filmmaker Thomas Campbell, and under creative direction of McElroy:FCB, the commercials were shot in black and white using a 16MM camera. The film was then edited with music that captures the motivation, inspiration and commitment of the athletes’ actions. With this campaign, Vans introduces the aspirational aspects of these sports to Gen-Y with the rawness that is typically associated with Core Sports. According to Vans’ Vice President of Marketing Chris Strain, “As the leader in Core Sports we wanted these ads to break tradition and allow the athlete’s performance and raw appeal to represent the truest form of the sport ¿no storyboards, no director, no craft services trucks, no grips, best boys or walkie talkies–just Thomas Campbell and his camera following the athletes doing what they do best.”

The first television spot features skateboarding champion Geoff Rowley; the second skateboarding spot is set in San Francisco and features Ethan Fowler, Tony Trujillo, J.R. Neves and John Cardiel; and the third spot follows Freestyle Motocross champion Carey Hart.

“We shot simple images that reflect the simple beauty and pain of these actions. With this campaign, there is a direct connection between the viewer and commercial,” says Campbell. “They will evoke an emotional reaction ¿something that has not yet been shown on television in relation to these sports ¿usually you see a quick trick and that’s it. Here you can feel the realness.”

This television commercial campaign follows an equally novel print campaign which is currently featured in such high profile publications as Spin, Rolling Stone, Stuff and Maxim, as well as surfing, snowboarding, wakeboarding, BMX and skateboarding magazines. The individual ads feature surf champions Shawn “Barney” Baron, Jamie O’Brien, Joel Tudor and Serena Brooke; skateboarders Cara Beth Burnside and Neal Hendrix; and wakeboarder Tina Bessinger.

Since its origins 34 years ago, Vans, Inc. continues as the leader in innovation and youth culture -beginning with the classic shoes that were a “must” for every teenager to the origination of Core Sports and its crossover into the entertainment arena today. This includes the Vans Warped Tour ¿ the #1 alternative music, sports and lifestyle festival in the world; The Vans Triple Crown Series which is comprised of twenty-one events in Snowboarding, Skateboarding, Surfing, Wakeboarding, Freestyle Motocross, Supercross, and BMX. Each stop of the Vans Triple Crown Series receives a dedicated one-hour show, airing a minimum of three times on the ESPN networks in over 180 countries to over 200 million households worldwide. This is the largest television distribution package ever featuring these Core Sports.

The unique style of this television advertising campaign furthers Vans’ position as a company committed to Core Sports and its participants. By uniting each athlete’s passion with the company’s vision for the future, Vans will continue to lead the way in this ever-evolving consumer culture.