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Puma Wants Us to See Sport Through Its Eye

With its first global marketing campaign in 10 years — its biggest ever — the German sporting goods-maker is looking to hone its image as the “fastest sports brand in the world.”

Puma Wants Us to See Sport Through Its Eye

An image from Puma’s new global ad campaign

PARIS — As the countdown begins to the Paris Olympic Games this summer, Puma kicked off its first global marketing campaign in more than 10 years — and the biggest in its 75-year history.

The brand is building on its “Forever. Faster.” tag line introduced a decade ago with the aim of strengthening its positioning as the self-proclaimed fastest sports brand in the world. The new campaign champions the brand’s outlook, other than any specific product category, marking a strategic shift.

“The aim of our global brand campaign is to create a strong emotional connection with our consumers around the world,” explained Arne Freundt, chief executive officer of the German sportswear giant. “Research has shown that a brand campaign like this is necessary to stay top of mind with consumers in the long term.”

He continued, “Such an effect cannot be reached with a focus on selling individual products. We expect this improved brand perception to eventually support the long-term growth of the company.”

At a launch event in Paris, Freundt shared the stage with athletes including Karsten Warholm, Breanna Stewart, Mondo Duplantis and Yaroslava Mahuchikh, heralding how the brand is seeking to tap into its sporting heritage.

“We’ll make the year of sport the year of speed. We will shout out to the world that Puma is the fastest sports brand in the world,” Freundt said. “Speed is a superpower not only relevant for the elite athletes, but for everyday consumers, it makes the difference.”

The new campaign, with the catchphrase “See the Game Like We Do,” includes video footage of top athletes also including Antoine Griezmann, Felix Streng and Neymar Jr. as they train and compete, highlighting their emotion and determination. Spectators — at the stadium or watching through a screen from afar — are seen cheering them on, sharing the sensation. Close-up shots interspersed with the action show flickering eyes, the pupils replaced by the label’s unmistakable cat logo.

Puma followed 13 athletes across eight countries to shoot imagery for the powerful 360-degree campaign. It is intended to be holistic and emotional, and will be used throughout the year and across product categories. It involved Puma’s biggest marketing investment ever.

The extensive footage taken will serve for further, more specific activations for key sporting events in the coming months, including the Conmebol Copa America, the UEFA Euro 2024, as well as the Olympics. It will feature on television, social media and points-of-sale and as outdoor ads in major cities, notably Paris.

Freundt continued, “The Olympics are usually not the kind of event where fans buy a jersey and the market for track and field spikes is of course also limited. However, the credibility we get as a sports brand from events like the Olympics is crucial in our brand elevation strategy and supports our positioning.”

The film went live Wednesday morning, tying in with the event, which also saw Puma showcase its latest innovations, including its Nitro technology, which features in new running, track and field, basketball and handball shoes, as well as kits for Olympian athletes. Norwegian sprinter Warholm discussed how he had worked with the brand to develop tailored shoes for the Games this summer as Puma seeks to highlight its capacity for innovation to create tailored athletic products.

“We were born with the idea to serve the athletes, we were born with the idea to make them faster,” Freundt said. “Their insight of their movement makes us make better products, improving their performance in getting faster. Exactly with that mindset we have shaped the past 75 years of sport and sports culture.”

The venue in Saint Ouen, just north of Paris, is to be the Puma House, a home-from-home for its partner athletes, during the games in July and August.