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Sports are an inherently social activity, so brands like Nike are a natural fit when it

comes to social media marketing.
To find out how the sports giant makes the most of this opportunity, I thought it would be
interesting to see how it uses Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google+.

Facebook
Like most global brands Nike has separate Facebook pages for each of its product
categories. This includes golf, snowboarding and FuelBand, as well as two football
pages – one for the American version of the sport and one for the version everyone else
in the world plays.
As far as I can tell the latter actually has the most fans of any of the Nike pages
(17.2m), followed by the main corporate account (12.3m) and American football (2.4m).
Most of the dedicated sports pages are updated on a daily basis with videos or images,
while the corporate page is updated about once a week.
The social teams are obviously lucky in that they have a huge number of athletes
around whom they can create and share content, so the global football page displays a
huge amount of content featuring the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Andres Iniesta, as
well as a lot of product-related posts.
At the moment much of the content is around Nike’s “Be Mercurial” campaign to
promote its Mercurial Vapor IX boots, including video clips of personalised boots that
customers have bought online through NIKEID.
Interestingly the product-related content appears to get more interactions than posts
featuring players, with one photo gallery of new boots attracting more than 35,000 ‘likes’
and almost 1,000 comments.
Similarly, the American football page is updated several times per week with a focus on
athletes and products.

Twitter As with Facebook. the Nike. and the rate at which some of the more popular accounts respond to users is quite astounding. such as the #MyTimeIsNow initiative that it ran last year during the European Championships. For example.basketball.com and football. and on top of that the sports brand also operates a Nike Support feed to resolve product questions and technical needs. so its Facebook pages don’t feature the smaller competitions and sales promotions that we’re used to seeing from consumer brands. Nike.000 followers) responds to more than 100 tweets per day regarding order queries. stock information and product details.com feed (766. Nike has individual feeds for its subsidiary brands.Nike is well known for running major branding campaigns. Instead it uses its social channels to cross-promote larger marketing campaigns. FuelBand. It ranks alongside ASOS as one of the most active customer service feeds I’ve seen so far. including golf. For each of the feeds the focus is very much on responding to @mentions rather than pushing out marketing messages. This dedicated customer service feed also answers hundreds of questions per day. .

Personally I’m a big fan of Nike’s Twitter strategy and would like to see more brands adopt a similar approach. then you’re definitely going to consider that brand when you buy sports products in future and may even recommend them to your friends.The sports feed are also good at responding to @mentions. the Nike Football feed is on hand to give out training advice. Nike Running responds to a huge number of people to discuss their training schedule and give motivational advice. but it goes a long way in turning customers into brand advocates. though not to the same level as the Nike. For example. It would obviously require a sizeable investment. . Similarly. Nike has also achieved some notable successes by using Twitter as a central tool in its marketing campaigns. if you’ve just bought a pair of Nike football boots and the brand then personally responds to you with training advice and a few words of encouragement. product information or encouragement to other users. During the London Olympics it managed to outshine official sponsor Adidas with a massive billboard and social campaign around the capital. For example.com or Support accounts.

Nike eschewed the usual celebrity endorsements in a campaign that celebrated everyday athletes.718 new Facebook fans during the Games versus 80. Adidas. as the only account it has established is for Nike Women. It bought up hundreds of billboards around the city featuring the hashtag ‘#findgreatness’. however all of its pins are product related and link back to official Nike websites. Pinterest Nike has clearly researched the demographic profile of the average Pinterest user. which spent tens of millions of pounds to be an official sponsor.000 tweets associating Nike with the word Olympic between 27 July and 2 August compared to 9.295 for Adidas. Furthermore.900 followers. ran a campaign featuring Team GB athletes and the hashtag ‘#takethestage’. Data from Experian Hitwise shows that Nike achieved a 6% growth in its number of Facebook fans and a 77% boost in engagement on its Facebook page compared to 2% and 59% respectively for Adidas. . But while that was certainly a social success. Nike attracted 166. According to Socialbakers’ CheerMeter there were more than 16. Nike also got its wrists slapped by the Advertising Standards Authority last year after footballers Wayne Rooney and Jack Wilshere tweeted marketing messages without stating that they had been paid by Nike to do so. It has created 10 boards and amassed a respectable 9.761 for Adidas.

but no worse than most of the other Google+ pages I’ve looked at as part of this series of posts. Pinterest is a great opportunity to develop the brand identity and create pinboards that reflect the company’s values. Considering the amount of athletes that Nike has on its payroll. with each one attracting a few hundred +1s and tens of comments. As with most brands the level of interaction with the posts is extremely limited. but Nike is essentially using it as an extension of its product catalogue. Google+ As far as I can tell Nike only has one official Google+ page and it gives it the bare minimum of attention. it should try to take advantage of G+'s unique features by hosting hangouts and Q&As. It is updated around once per week and all of the content is repurposed from Facebook. Nike+ .Nike isn’t alone in only pinning its own content – John Lewis also applies this tactic – but personally I think it’s a missed opportunity. Overall it’s fairly uninspiring.

2 3. Users can then accumulate ‘NikeFuel’ points and set themselves goals or compete against other users. but it has also taken the time to establish its own unique social platform through Nike+.72 73 8607. Anova: Single Factor SUMMARY Groups Count Column 1 33 Column 2 33 Column 3 33 ANOVA Sum 6134 00 2233 2 2840 43 Avera ge 18587. Since 2010 Nike has developed a range of training products that are digitally linked using the Nike+ FuelBand.31E +08 . It has proved to be a hugely successful product for Nike as it taps into the social aspect of sports by allowing users to track their progress using an iPhone app and share their progress online.94E +08 51971 4. It now has more than six million members that use it an average of three times per week.Not only does Nike do a decent job of marketing itself using the four main social networks. Having used a Nike FuelBand before I feel the product is a victory for marketing over usability.3 64 Varian ce 5. but even so it means Nike has a product and a social network that millions of people use on a daily basis which is an extremely powerful tool for driving brand loyalty. There are dedicated Facebook and Twitter accounts for NikeFuel which are tied into the #MakeItCount hashtag. such as the ‘Fuel your team’ initiative that currently allows users to show support for their favourite basketball team by earning them NikeFuel points. 88 676. It also allows Nike to run novel campaigns.

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87 879 676.36 364 19 20 21 22 23 24 MEAN LIKES : 18587.8 9 10 11 12 Allyson Felix No age limit Shelly Ann English Gardner Simone Biles Video Video Video Video Video 3600 83000 2000 2700 49000 106 3320 74 64 743 256 92630 156 235 9051 13 Unlimited together Video 88000 1562 27015 14 15 16 Gabby's greatness Your limits finding your limits Video Video Video 4100 24000 66000 64 638 1704 266 5148 29254 17 18 Unlimited Rory Champions aren’t born Kevin hart to ypur senera williams Hard Simone Biles Stand as one Video Video 4600 14000 320 730 1552 11687 0 325000 83000 82000 87000 240000 0 850000 0 319000 200000 530000 0 399000 792000 Video 2700 222 247 126000 Video Pictures 13000 8200 317 203 5153 760 Video 58000 1120 10090 Video Video 3700 2600 187 177 1669 405 25 26 will power of champion Ashton eaton Allyson truly fearless Fraser Pryce always believe 449000 269847 42 310000 0 220000 96000 Video Video 1600 55000 135 1674 192 46819 27 28 29 sparkbrilliance gold medalist NJR * JJORDAN Video Video Pictures 15000 2100 7300 1513 198 340 7217 418 667 30 31 kobe's last game Revolution in motion Video Video 16000 18000 1832 858 12711 3066 32 33 Lunar epic another running shoe Video Video 7200 2500 1228 387 1073 176 Average 18587.7272 727 8607.87879 38000 270000 0 390000 52000 269847 42 775000 190000 0 226000 2500 .

MEAN COMMENTS : 676.72727 MEAN SHARES: 8607.363 .