(JC) You’re probably wondering what Mezamashii means…
The Mezamashii Run Project was conceived as more than a one-and-done campaign. We hoped to ignite something organic and social that would evolve and grow as more runners experienced Mezamashii running.
We built the Mezamashii Run Project to roll out in several phases
Initially we sent key advocates and influencers, one of 600 hand-addressed, personalized direct mail invitations – those included bloggers, running club leaders and journalists.
Mizuno and McKinney scoured blogs, publications and running clubs to assemble the list. Upon receiving the customized, numbered invitation, the audience got one simple, overarching message: Join us.
Within the invite, each runner was told to call Mizuno USA and fulfill their shoe order using a unique code on the inside of the invitation. Then, depending on the size of their circle of influence (which we determined by measuring their status within the larger running community), they were offered the chance to send out one, three or 10 invitations to fellow runners they thought would also appreciate Mezamashii running.
Key influencers were also sent these teaser videos to post on their social network:
Initially, all recruitment was handled through word of mouth and social media, spurred by the 600 invites.
--buzz already building. Talk about the mysterious tone to the creative that fuels curiosity and discussion.--
At this point we started expanding the program, inviting the overall running public to join the project and be one of 100 people a month chosen to receive a pair of Mizuno running shoes.
We used owned media (our Haikus) to create paid media, recruiting other runners.
This video was part of the paid effort. It ran online in expandable banners.
The only print ad we ran during the entire program was a half-page insertion in Runner’s World.
And then, finally, we knew we had to nourish the community of project members with fresh and engaging content:, the focus being to make sure community members get new, relevant and exciting information and offers from Mizuno, like the opportunity to wear test future products, influence shoe design, access future models before they become available to the public, and have live chat sessions with Mizuno shoe designers. So we literally fly the members to Mizuno’s US Headquarters, film them, and have them tell their fellow members what’s coming next
The first half would be spent putting Mizunos on consumers’ feet in a program we called the Mezamashii Run Project. The second half would be spent in a precise and surgical manner to make people aware of the project and get them buzzing. We know running has become increasingly social. Runners like to share. And we needed them to become our media.
Beyond simply selling product the Mezamashii Run Project has expanded the brand’s advocates:
How Mizuno Moved the Shoe Trial Experience from Store to Road from DRS, 7.29.14
Favorable to Mizuno
(of Running Junkies polled)
Pre MRP Post MRP
“The (Mizuno) Wave Rider fits my foot like a glove
and I'm kicking myself for never trying Mizuno
before. This is a brilliant marketing campaign,
because even though you gave me a pair of shoes,
you have gained a lifelong customer. Well done.”
— Adam Mull (Brooks),
Member shoe review from MRP site