Thinkboxes July/August 2012 Winner: Adidas’ 'Take the stage' by Sid Lee (Amsterdam)

As an authentic sports brand and LOCOG/Team GB sponsor, Adidas wanted to celebrate London 2012, but also ensure it occupied a unique space. Its 60-second, Olympic themed brand campaign, entitled ‘Take the stage’, showcased that there is a platform for everyone in 2012.

It featured Team GB athletes, including cyclist Victoria Pendleton, gymnast Louis Smith and diver Tom Daley. The brand also wanted to make the Games relevant to uninterested 13- to 19-year-olds. Athletes all have their own reason and motivation for taking the stage at an Olympic Games and Adidas was seeking to demonstrate that only it could bring you closer to them.

To achieve this aim, the copywriter spoke to each athlete to get genuine insights into their mindset. This authenticity was at the heart of what the brand wanted to communicate. Adidas marketing director Nick Craggs says: ‘“Take the stage” was so right for Team GB, but intuitive for consumers, too. It was also successful because we could activate it across PR, digital or ATL, all with the same brand DNA.’

The campaign was the brand’s biggest UK marketing spend to date, spanning TV, out-of-home, search and online display formats.


Every day we saw and heard people say “I can’t wait for Team GB to take the stage”.”

Nick Craggs Marketing Director, Adidas

Client Adidas; Ad agency Sid Lee; Creative team Sid Lee; Production; Director Isaiah Seret

Other ads on the podium

McDonald's: We All Make the Games (2nd)

  • Creative agency Leo Burnett
  • Creative team Rob Tenconi, Mark Franklin
  • Clients Jo Webster, Stephen Hill, Alistair Macrow
  • Production company Moxie Pictures
  • Directors Neil Gorringe, Luke Franklin

EDF: Heroes (3rd)

  • Creative agency CLM BBDO
  • Creative team Jean-François Sacco, Gilles Fichteberg, Mark Forgan, Jamie Standen
  • Clients Catherine Lescure, Hubert Blanquefort, Cameron Hughes
  • Production company Henry de Czar
  • Director Bart Timmer

Also shortlisted

Nike: Find Your Greatness

  • Creative agency Wieden & Kennedy Portland
  • Creative team Ryan O’Rourke, Alberto Ponte
  • Clients Enrico Balleri, Ean Lensch, David Reti
  • Production company Park Pictures
  • Directors Lance Acord, Seb Edwards

Trainline: Be Sensible

  • Creative agency DLKW Lowe;
  • Creative team Christian Sewell, Andy Mcananey;
  • Clients Sarah Mewett, Iain Hildreth;
  • Production company Academy;
  • Directors Si & Ad

A view from a Thinkbox Academy member on this month's picks


Doing great work around the Olympics isn’t easy. It takes determination, stamina and sacrifice. You devote weekends and evenings to it. Toiling tirelessly to use the same tools that have been used for generations – images of athletes, crowds and stadiums – to create something better than anyone else has ever done.

Damon Collins Founding Partner, Joint

Click here to see who won the previous award

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