BrandDunk

Branding the World of Sports

Archive for the ‘Nike’ Category

Tiger Woods doesn’t get it…

Posted by ZA on November 22, 2010

…but this article in AdAge does.  It hits on exactly where Tiger is going wrong in his efforts to rehab his image and what he could do to improve.  I totally agree that everything Tiger is doing right now seems to be scripted by IMG.

I asked a friend of mine, who is a huge Tiger fan, if he listened to the radio interview last week.  His response was, “You can be a bland d*ck and still be wildly popular (as long as) you win everything.  But finishing 11th and ‘granting’ interviews like this is boring…and a little insulting.”   I agree with my friend and I agree with the experts quoted in Rich Thomaselli’s article.

For Tiger to truly win back some of us, he either needs to start dominating on the golf course again or he needs to be more authentic.  Since I personally don’t think Tiger has it in him to be more authentic, I think Woods needs to just win. The question now is can Tiger Woods get back to that same level of domination?  Can he dominate the golf scene in the coming years the way he did in the past?  I think that’s a challenge for Tiger, because there are a lot more talented golfers these days.  And there is not the same fear of Tiger Woods that once existed on the PGA Tour.  A lot of these younger players and foreign golfers want to challenge Tiger and have the games to do it.

So if I’m Tiger Woods, I would quite these lame attempts to personify himself to the public.  Instead I would go radio silent again and thrust all his energy into getting back to dominating on the golf course.  Then fans like me can just appreciate him for being the best golfer on the planet, instead of his agents trying to get us to like Tiger the person.

Tiger Woods' latest PR attempts are too programmed

Posted in Golf, Nike | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Nike won’t compromise brand for Women’s footwear

Posted by ZA on June 7, 2010

AdAge article about  the strong growth that Skechers and Reebok are seeing from their marketing of toning shoes to women.  Both Reebok and Skechers grew their market share of women’s shoes close to 200% in the past 12 months.  During that same period Nike and Adidas market share in that category declined (Note: Reebok is subsidiary of Adidas).

The article attributes much of Reebok and Skechers growth to the successful launch of shoes that focus on toning. Skechers shoes have an uneven sole that is supposed to tone legs and butt while you walk in them.  Reebok has recently started pushing similar toning shoes with an aggressive marketing campaign that focuses solely on women’s butts and legs.

While those two brands are enjoying the new toning category, Nike is sitting it out.  Nike says it will “compromise…performance” in their shoes and has not indicated they will release any shoes in these category to compete with Skechers or Reebok.  Instead Nike pointed to a new line of women’s training shoes they will release this Fall.

While I appreciate Nike’s unwillingness to chase a fad, I think they are missing an opportunity here.  I’ve seen lots of women I know wearing the Skechers toning shoes.  Why couldn’t Nike developing something in the space and market it as a lifestyle shoe, thus not “compromising” their standards on performance or training footwear.  Nike needs to be careful here because they might wind up giving up more than just this one (toning) category of shoes, they may wind up conceding a large piece of market share in women’s footwear and apparel.

Can Reebok overtake Nike?

Posted in Adidas, Apparel & Shoes, Nike, Sports Brands, Sports Marketing | Tagged: , , | 2 Comments »

Nike soccer spot is captivating

Posted by ZA on May 21, 2010

Nike recently debuted their new soccer spot which features a few of their top football stars from around the globe (Rooney, Ribery, C. Ronaldo).  It’s a great commercial that really makes you think about the influence that sports has on our lives.  Great work by Nike.

Write the Future – by Nike

Posted in Nike, Soccer | Leave a Comment »

Nike looking to gobble up competition

Posted by ZA on May 6, 2010

Nike announced that they have targeted annual revenue of $27 billion by 2015.  Nike plans to achieve that growth through expansion into developing markets (China & Eastern Europe), by expanding their existing line of products and by pursuing “acquisitions and partnerships”.  That target is a big increase (near 50%) from Nike’s 2010 revenue projection of $19 billion, so to achieve their goal the Swoosh is going to have to be very aggressive.

This announcement only solidifies my opinion that Nike will try to acquire rival Under Armour.  Under Armour reported 2009 revenue of just under $900 million dollars, which should put UA in the $1 billion annual revenue range in 2010.  So Nike not only gobbles up a strong competitor and gains ground in the performance sportswear category, they would also be adding $1 billion plus dollars in revenue towards their bottom line.  That billion plus in extra revenue is more than Nike is receiving from their current subsidiaries; Cole Haan, Converse, Hurley and Umbro.  So Under Armour has to look attractive and I think Nike buys them this year.

Posted in Nike | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »

Did Nike commercial end Tiger Woods’ marriage?

Posted by ZA on April 16, 2010

In a word, no.  But AdAge takes an interesting look at that topic here because apparently some of the mainstream media is using that story line to drum up business.  Even if Elin Nordegren didn’t like the Nike ad, a television commercial was not the breaking point in their marriage.  So to even suggest that the ad played a role (and not Tiger’s 18+ affairs) is insulting to Elin.

Posted in Golf, Nike | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

New Tiger Woods commercial for Nike

Posted by ZA on April 7, 2010

Nike Golf launched their first Tiger Woods commercial since his scandal broke.  The commercial features the voice of Tiger’s deceased father, Earl Woods.  Tiger doesn’t speak in the commercial, he just stares into the camera with a concerned look on his face.  Tiger’s wearing a Nike swoosh on his hat & sweater vest, which is the only brand or messaging in the commercial aside from a plain Nike swoosh that briefly appears on the screen at the close.

I don’t personally care for this commercial.  I know Nike feels like they had to address the elephant in the room with Tiger, but using his late father’s voice seems to be a cheap tactic.  Nike will surely get lots of exposure for this commercial because it is a major source of controversy.  But I’m not sure mentions on NBC Nightly News and across the blogosphere is going to translate into business for Nike.  I think Nike Golf should have kept the focus on Tiger’s play on the course and not try to touch his off-course issues.


Tiger Woods commercial for Nike Golf

Posted in Golf, Nike | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

Evaluating my 2009 Sports Marketing predictions

Posted by ZA on January 3, 2010

Time to take a look back and evaluate how I did on my 2009 predictions for the world of Sports Marketing. I posted my “bold predictions” on January 2, 2009 as a wide ranging look at some of the big moves I thought would happen in the industry.  I made seven predictions and wind up getting almost half of them correct.

Prediction: Tiger Woods will sign with Mercedes or BMW.

Result: This one did not happen, but who could have predicted the implosion that would happen to Tiger Woods the endorsement star in 2009.  Tiger is currently losing endorsements by the week, but I still think this prediction will eventually come true.  Companies will stay away from Woods for awhile, but when they do come back I expect Tiger to pickup a luxury car endorsement deal.

Prediction: Wrigley Field gets a new name.

Result: This one didn’t happen, although the Cubs were finally sold at the end of the year so it could be on-tap for 2010.

Prediction: AIG will end uniform sponsorship with Manchester United.
Result: I got this one right.  Shortly after writing these predictions word came out that AIG would discontinue their deal with Man U.  AIG actually just chose not to renew their deal, but close enough I got this one right.

Prediction: NASCAR will cut races.

Result: It was a tough year for Nascar with a tough economy and huge losses in the auto industry both hurting the sport.  The end result was that some races were not return to the schedule (e.g.- Milwaukee Mile in 2010).

Prediction: Reebok will be folded by Adidas.

Result: This did not happen, and with parent company, Adidas’ stock up 20% in 2009, the Reebok brand might be safe for awhile.  That said, I still think we’re still headed towards an Adidas versus Nike world, so at some point Adidas is going to put Reebok down.

Prediction: Under Armour will be acquired by Nike.

Result: This did not happen, but I still feel it’s one that could happen soon.  Under Armour’s stock is only up slightly since beginning of ’09 and UA stock took a pounding in October when they missed the mark with their expansion into running shoes.  Nike is still flying high and has a $30 billion market cap, so I think they eventually make this acquisition to eliminate a big competitor.

Prediction: David Beckham goes back to Europe.
Result: Nailed this prediction.  Becks came, he played a little bit and created a sensation.  Then David high tailed it back to the Spanish Premiere League.  I think Beckham likes the idea of playing in America, but isn’t really interested in doing it just yet.

Posted in Adidas, Apparel & Shoes, Golf, Nascar, Nike, Sports Brands, Sports Marketing, Under Armour, Venue Naming Rights | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Will Tiger return any money to Nike?

Posted by ZA on December 17, 2009

As the scandal around golfer Tiger Woods rages on, sales of Nike Golf apparel are dropping.  Retailers are no longer pushing the Tiger Woods branded Nike Golf line and his absence from the PGA Tour is only going to continue to hurt sales.  Bloomberg estimates that Nike stands to lose approximately $30 million in sales from the current Tiger scandal.  A former CBS Sports executive says “The aura (around Tiger) is gone”.

So the question is will Tiger give any of that money back to Nike?  Woods is almost solely responsible for building Nike Golf division into a half a billion dollar cash cow.  For that Tiger has been paid over $100 million dollars by Nike in his career.  So will Tiger consider giving some of that money back to Nike now – when it’s clear that Tiger’s personal actions are hurting the corporate giant.  I doubt that Tiger would ever hand over a check to Phil Knight, but I do think this will prompt Tiger to give Nike a sweetheart deal whenever his current contract expires.  Sure Tiger has made more money for Phil Knight than Knight has paid to Woods, but Knight & Nike have also stood by Tiger during this scandal.  Knight is the only sponsor who has vocally supported Woods saying that Tiger’s transgressions are just a “minor blip” on his great career.   I’m betting that Phil Knight gets a nice holiday card from Tiger this year.

Posted in Athletes, Golf, Nike | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Endorsement Profile: Tiger Woods

Posted by ZA on December 3, 2009

Athlete: Tiger Woods
Sport: Golf
League: PGA
Agent: Mark Steinberg (IMG)
Age: 33 (December 30, 1975)
Rank in SI’s 50 richest athletes:  1st
Endorsement value:  $105,000,000.00

Tiger Woods endorsement deals (thru Nov. 2009):
* AT&T
* Gatorade (Pepsico)
* Gillette (Procter & Gamble)
* EA Sports (Electronic Arts)
* NetJets
* Nike Golf
* Tag Heuer
* TLC Vision Corporation
* Upper Deck

Tiger Woods endorsement potential:
Tiger Woods is the top athlete endorser in the world today.  He is the Cadillac of athlete endorsements (even if he occasionally drives erratically in his own Escalade).  Every major corporation wants him, but few can afford him.  Woods has even surged past sports brand icon Michael Jordan in-terms of earnings; Tiger is first athlete in sports to earn more than $1 billion dollars in their career.  Much of that money comes from the rich endorsement deals that Tiger has had for over a decade.

Tiger’s endorsement history is legendary, starting with a $40 million contract from Nike when he turned pro in 1996.  Tiger basically made Nike Golf what it is today and Phil Knight rewarded him handsomely with a $100 million extension in 2006.  Tiger has become the driving force behind Nike Golf, even as they have added other big name golfers to their endorsement stable (i.e.- Stewart Cink, Anthony Kim, Justin Leonard).  Woods is a poster boy for their product line, having dropped his lucrative Titleist sponsorship when he switched to play a Nike golf ball.

Much of Woods appeal as an endorsement star has to do with his phenomenal ability on the golf course.  Tiger grabbed the sport of golf by the throat and has not yet let go; in a sport with some of the biggest endorsement stars on the planet (Phil Mickelson, Arnold Palmer) Tiger is the king.  It only helps that golf’s demographic is one that appeals to the bluest of blue chip companies; businesses that want their product featured (by Tiger Woods) to that affluent golf crowd.  Tiger’s so marketable that even his caddy, Steve Williams, has grabbed endorsement deals with Nike and Valvoline.  Let that sink in for a second…even Tiger Woods’ caddy has major corporations paying him money to endorse their product.

Perhaps the truest test of Tiger Woods endorsement appeal is understood by looking at the list of corporations that he used to endorse.  Tiger’s former deals with Accenture, American Express, Buick, General Mills, Titleist and Rolex would be the envy of most athletes, yet Woods has just moved on to bigger, more lucrative deals.

Tiger Woods has truly changed the game in-terms of endorsement deals.  Like Jordan did before him, Woods seeks out “business partnerships” rather than just contractual endorsement deals.  He is setting the standard today on how athletes and sponsors partner up.  His deals are making sports stars, like Tiger, more money from corporate sponsors than they have ever earned before.

Tiger Woods commercial for Nike Golf:
[Youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6oTMosZ76b8]

[Edit: Accenture dropped their endorsement deal with Tiger Woods in December 2009 – a few days after this post]

Posted in Endorsement Deals, Endorsement Profile, Gatorade, Golf, Nike, Sports Brands | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments »

What does Nike spend on marketing?

Posted by ZA on November 12, 2009

Nike is one of the top brands in sports and the #1 shoemaker in the world.  The athletic apparel and footwear giant was founded in 1964 by Phil Knight and Bill Bowerman.  Formerly known as Blue Ribbon Sports, the company now has recognizable brands across many sectors: Nike, Jordan Brand, Nike Golf, Converse, Hurley, Nike Soccer, Umbro and Cole Haan.

Nike has more than 30% global market share in the athletic footwear category and almost 10% share of the athletic apparel market.  Nike’s market share in the United States is higher, they have almost 40% of the U.S. market.  Nike had almost $19 billion in global revenue in 2008 (source).

Nike reinvests approximately 12% of their revenue into marketing, which includes advertising, endorsements and sponsorship deals.  In 2008, Nike spent almost $3 billion dollars on marketingNike’s U.S. budget is close to $800 million. Nike is seeing strong results from their spending because their 3 top brands (Nike, Jordan, Converse) grew 11% in September, while competitors Adidas, Reebok and New Balance fell by an equal amount (source: AdAge).

Top Marketing Execs at Nike:
Phil Knight – Chairman/Founder
Mark Parker – President & CEO
Charlie Denson – President, Nike Brand
Ken Dice – VP, Marketing – North America
Trevor Edwards – VP, Global Brand
Joaquin Hidalgo – VP, Brand Marketing
Keith Houlemard – President, Jordan Brand
Jared Morris – US Marketing
John Slusher – VP, Global Sports Marketing
Howard White – VP, Sports Marketing – Jordan Brand

nike_swoosh

Posted in Nike | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »