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Gymshark’s Noel Mack on achieving virality with a pandemic deal on a Times Square ad

Noel Mack’s journey to becoming Gymshark’s chief brand officer came from a seemingly unlikely source — former Meta COO Sheryl Sandberg. After initially turning down a job at the upstart fitness brand a year before, Mack heard Sandberg say on a podcast something along the lines of “If the rocket ship’s taking off, don’t worry about your seat, just get on it.”

Mack joined Gymshark, and six years later, the rest is history. Gymshark is now one of the U.K.’s fastest-growing companies, with a valuation over $1 billion.

Community is a key tenet of the sportswear brand and it was in full force in the execution of Gymshark’s Times Square ad during the COVID-19 pandemic. After Mack’s neighbor offered him heavily discounted digital out-of-home ad space in Times Square, Gymshark decided to engage its social following and showcase the most-liked reply to their tweet in the billboard. The brand’s tweet entered the Guinness Book of World Records for “most-liked reply inbound.”

“The engagement for this tweet went absolutely ridiculous, it was crazy.” Mack says, "In the end it did something like a billion impressions — all for 5 grand and a little bit of creative thinking.”