Nike Kaepernick ad campaign rapidly increases stock, sales


Kevin Crompton – Editor-in-Chief

Colin Kaepernick still does not have a job in the National Football League. He does however, have a new job with Nike.

“Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.”

The print advertisement featuring a grayscale close up of Kaepernick’s face with a quote inspiring athletes to make sacrifices for their beliefs in white text debuted Sept. 3 across the internet.

Kaepernick, who has become a publicly known figure beyond the sport of football due to his protest against social injustice during the National Anthem, has also teamed up with Nike to star in a two-minute television commercial. The details including amount of income that Kaepernick will receive from the Nike endorsement deal has not yet been disclosed.

Much like the kneeling controversy, American’s have conflicting views and opinions on Nike’s new ad campaign. Some right-wingers even went as far as burning their favorite pair of Nike sneakers.

The inspirational commercial narrated by Kaepernick has an overlying theme of “follow your dreams even if people call them crazy.” The incarceration of 120 dollar sneakers — no, that’s not crazy.

Conversely, those in support of Kaepernick are buying increasingly more Nike products. According to Edison Trends, a digital commerce research firm, Nike has seen a 31 percent increase in sales from Sept. 2 to Sept. 4.

From a business stand point, there is no arguing against the statement that Nike made the right decision in the Kaepernick team-up. Even those who insist on taking a flame to their sneakers

still had to buy the sneakers to do so. Furthermore, in the realm of target marketing, Nike nailed this one on the head. Nike targets the younger generation and that same demographic of people tend to lean towards the left on the political spectrum. According to 2017 Pew Research survey young people are predominately liberal while the older generation identify themselves as conservative. In this case, Nike can afford to anger the hardcore conservative consumer in their advertising because traditionally they are not spending what the younger liberal consumers are on sneakers and other Nike products.

Apart from Nike, Ford Motor Company also released a statement last week expressing their support for Kaepernick and the right to peacefully protest.

According to an article on CNN’s website, Ford’s statement read, “we respect individuals’ rights to express their views, even if they are not ones we share. That’s part of what makes America great.”

It’s easy to burn a pair of sneakers, but how far will people go to show their outrage against Kaepernick? In the meantime, we will patiently wait for the video to emerge on the internet of somebody burning their Ford-F150.

Photo Credit: August Pelliccio

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