For decades, consumers have turned to Icy Hot to relieve their aches and pains. And, in 2022, the brand took it to the next level by introducing Icy Hot PRO: a product strong enough to provide pain relief to more physically active consumers and even professional athletes. We set out to introduce Icy Hot’s product innovation in a way befitting of news this big.
To launch Icy Hot PRO, we partnered with four famous athletes: soccer star Rose Lavelle, Las Vegas tight end Darren Waller, tennis champion Sloane Stephens, and, of course, long term brand ambassador, Shaquille O’Neal. We transported these athletes to a world of ice and heat to create the iciest, hottest, and most badass pain relief demo in the history of pain relief demos. The simple action of bringing these four superstars together grabbed the attention of the category and millions of sports fans. Each of them shared the commercial with their massive followings and posted additional content of the squad.
Creating the worlds of ice and heat required meticulous visual effects work. We shot our athletes in large warehouses with minimal set design—artificial snow in the ice world and desert sand in the heat world. In post production, we painstakingly crafted glaciers, an ice floor, swirling wind, Arizona-style red rocks, and even a fiery tennis ball projectile.
One of the most important cinematic elements of the campaign is the ice and heat effects we see on the athletes’ bodies. Shaq applies the product and his arm ices over, triggering the transition to the world of ice. Halfway through, we see a heat effect on Darren Waller’s arm, which, in turn, triggers the transition to the heat world. These ice and heat effects were designed to dramatize the user experience and product benefits.
We followed up our epic TVC with a series of PR events hosted by our star athletes to cement the partnership in the eyes of the consumer. Icy Hot PRO and Sloane Stephens jumped on a new trend in sports with a Pickleball Recovery event that racked up 1.09B impressions. Darren Waller’s Post-Game Recovery Event garnered 1B impressions and grabbed headlines in publications like People, Us Weekly, and Page Six. And longtime spokesman Shaquille O’Neill launched “Comebaq Courts”—an initiative to refurbish public sports courts and fields to strengthen communities across the U.S. That event rose to over 1.7B impressions.
Together, our superstar squad and immersive world put Icy Hot PRO on the map and helped the brand pull even further ahead in an increasingly crowded pain relief and wellness category.
Thanks to our campaign, the launch of Icy Hot PRO was a huge success that resulted in a dramatic increase in brand awareness. Visits to the Icy Hot’s website increased by 61.5% and we exceeded our sales goal by over 25%. Partnering Rose Lavelle, Darren Waller, and Sloane Stephens with long-standing spokesperson, Shaq, brought buzz to the brand that led to the most successful product launch in the brand’s history.