Michael Jordan has star power that bridges age, race, and socioeconomic class. Nike understands this aspect of the popular superstar and decided to give him his own clothing line named Jumpman23. It is the most popular form of sports apparel available and the white logo that adorns each article of apparel is known worldwide. Michael Jordan is arguably the most loved and respected athlete of this generation, thus the ad for this company depicted in ESPN The Magazine takes advantage of his immense popularity. In an attempt to expand the companies influence Jumpman23 uses professional baseball player Derrick Jeter to send its message and promote its apparel. In the essay “Absolution for Sale,” Charity Miller writes, “We live in a world of images. Among the most persuasive and insistent of these images are those directed at us by advertising. These images often do more then simply try to persuade us to buy a particular product or use a particular service. More subtly, they influence us by appealing to our desires or exploiting our emotions.” The image of Jeter training alone in a gym clothed head to toe in Michael Jordan’s clothing line combine with a poem above describing his intentions. This scene portrays the hard work and dedication that will eventually lead to success as things an athlete of any level should expect while wearing the clothing. Michael Jordan takes advantage of his legend on the basketball court and his appeal worldwide to create a line of apparel that demands the same work ethic from those who wear it. Its success is in Jumpman23’s ability to interest buyers no matter what age, race, or sport.
The advertisement gives the impression that success does not come easily. To reach a goal there is a lot of hard work that goes into the process. This is how Jeter is portrayed in the picture. He is alone, in a dark gym surrounded by mirrors training with a thirty-five pound weight. He stares at his reflection in the mirror, deep in concentration, and highly motivated. The “light at the end of the tunnel” whether it be a world championship or simply a playground victory takes time, effort, and dedication and he is in the course of working towards that goal. Part of why the ad does not show him on the field, or celebrating a victory is because it wants to capture the countless hours...
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...er Jason Taylor “Team Jordan is something I wanted to do my whole career. Michael exemplifies everything that I think an athlete should be. The desire the competitiveness, everything about the man says winner and that’s what I’m about.” The hard work and desire Jordan put forth in order to achieve his dreams is well documented, and he has used this as the main focus in advertising his clothing line. By using other sports superstars who have achieved great things, he has been able to capture the attention of the sporting world. Once you put on the shoes and the clothing, you will begin to expect great things out of yourself. These goals come only after dedication and effort. Showing the work ethic of other great athletes and the thoughts that motivate them, Jumpan23 has successfully captured the idea of its clothing line. One has to look no further than the miniature symbol of a man flying through the air in order to imagine the possibilities and see what makes this advertisement so appealing.
Miller, Charity. “Absolution for Sale”. Criteria 2004.
Taylor, Jason. Athlete Bio. 1 March 2005 http://www.nike.com/jumpman23/team_jordan/team.jsp.