Hoops Star Ja Morant & Rapper Lil Baby Go Into ‘Dark Mode’ For New Beats by Dre NBA Playoffs Ad

Beats By Dre Dark Mode Ja Morant 1

Memphis Grizzlies point guard Ja Morant fronted a new campaign for Beats by Dre which leverages the NBA Playoffs and promotes Beats Studio Buds.


Athlete ambassador Morant, who was sidelined from the climax of the season at an early stage with an injury, teamed up with rapper Lil Baby with a music video-style spot that features an original Lil Baby track written specially for Morant.


Created by agency Translation, the video was shot in atmospheric black and white and is set to a track which focuses on the basketball player’s work ethic and drive to hone his craft out of the spotlight and showcase the buds product.


The 90-second spot dropped on TV and across digital and social channels (including related publishers such as Bleacher Report and NBA and platforms including Instagram, TikTok and Twitter) in the first week of May and content was linked by the hashtag #WelcomeToTheDark.



“Ja has been one of my favorite players to watch. We’ve been locked in,” said Lil Baby in the campaign PR. The rapper, who previously worked with Beats for its ‘You Love Me’ campaign, added “We took it up a notch with this original song.”



The campaign was created for Beats by Dre by creative agency Translation, production company Quality Films, while edit was handled by Cosmo Street, colour by Company 3 London, finishing by The Mill London, plus sound design from Barking Owl and music from Lil Baby (via Motown Records).





This campaign continues the Apple-owned brand’s well-established marketing approach of blending high-profile athletes and tentpole sporting event with music stars.


Morant, a youthful All-Star who rapidly established himself as a major hoops-related endorser for brands including BodyArmor, Hyperice and Nike, only recently became a Beats ambassador.


According to the team’s hometown newspaper the Memphis Commercial Appeal, he has now notched up more personal brand sponsorships than any other player in Grizzlies history and even appeared a trailer for the recent Hollywood blockbuster ‘Spider-Man: No Way Home’.


Morant had been averaging 38 points a game in the Grizzlies’ early Playoff games before an on-court collision and a bruised bone sent him to the injured list and ended the team’s Championship hopes for the season.


This work follows in the footsteps of its campaign featuring first-round NFL Draft pick Kayvon Thibodeaux with new music from Diddy, following Dr Dre’s ‘Made in LA’ campaign around this year’s Super Bowl.






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