In honor of National Nude Day, high-end workout brand Peloton has joined forces with actor and SVU alumni Christopher Meloni to roll out a cheeky, bare-all commercial. The ad features the well-muscled actor using the Peloton app to work out in various ways — from yoga to cardio to meditation.
But the catch is… it’s all completely nude.
It’s a brazen, amusing approach to promoting the brand’s app and, thankfully, works — in a large part due to Meloni’s natural charisma and comfort in front of the camera. In the caption for the brand’s Instagram post debuting the ad, they wrote: “We love all our Members…even those who observe interesting holidays”.
The purpose of the ad is to promote and drive brand awareness for the company’s new 30-day trial for new users — with which they’ll have access to all the workout videos Meloni is sampling. And Meloni was the perfect choice for a number of reasons — his fame, talent, and magnetism, to name a few.
But, most importantly, it’s a well-known fact that Meloni does indeed work out in the nude and has for years.
As he told NBCUniversal in May, “I work out naked. It’s my gym. I don’t black out the window, and I’m okay with that.” This fun tidbit actually lends a great deal of authenticity to Peloton’s latest ad — and while it’s still supposed to shock the viewer a bit, knowing Meloni has been a nude exerciser for years makes the ad more believable.
In the past, Peloton has been very hit-or-miss with its ad reception. Who can forget the incredibly awkward, viral 2019 commercial where a husband gifted his (already thin) wife a Peloton for Christmas?
While the brand claimed that the ad was meant to spotlight and celebrate a “fitness and wellness journey” — consumers saw it as both “sexist” and “dystopian”. Critics also pointed out that “the woman was already slim at the start and the implication that her partner thinks she needs to get fitter and lose weight was patronising and damaging.” It’s safe to say that consumers didn’t love this ad.
Clearly, Peloton has struggled in the past with finding ways to connect with audiences and promote its products successfully through its ad campaigns. Being a high-end, expensive brand, finding the right balance between accessibility and exclusivity is a tough job.
But, that’s where this recent ad with Meloni really shines. Not only is the commercial genuinely funny — tapping into the charm and appeal of its star — while the viewer is watching Meloni jump all over the screen in the buff, they’re also taking in important information about the brand’s latest offer.
A 30-day free trial will allow more consumers to test out Peloton’s services and see if the higher price tag is something they'd be willing to pay — thus balancing newfound accessibility with the brand’s traditional exclusivity.
It’s yet to be seen if Meloni’s ad increases Peloton’s subscriber numbers for the brand’s 30-day free trial — but it’s definitely a good start.