Blogging,  Business,  Distance Learner,  Featured,  Human Resource Mgm,  OUM,  Sharing Information

Nike’s Corporate Advertising

Nike, Adidas, Reebok, Puma and Fila are popular among sportswear consumers in Malaysia.  Sportswear is popular and becoming trend among young people as they identify them with relaxed lifestyle, fashion and comfort.  This has prompted manufacturers like Nike and Adidas to start expanding their business particularly in Asia as it has the potential to give them higher volume of sales for their products.

Most companies enhance their brand loyalty among their customers.  Brand loyalty is a consumer’s conscious or unconscious decision that is expressed through the intention or behaviour to repurchase a particular brand continually.  Brand loyalty has been proclaimed to be the ultimate goal of marketing (Reicheld and Sasser, 1990).  In marketing, brand loyalty consists of a consumer’s commitment to repurchase the brand through repeated buying of a product or a service or other positive behaviour such as word of mouth.  This indicates that the repurchase decision very much depends on trust and quality performance of the product or service (Chaudhuri and Holbrook, 2001).

The purpose of this research is to learn and understand Nike’s corporate advertising.  I will be using Nike as the subject, analysing Nike’s corporate advertising practices which covers;  the three communication effects of corporate advertising, and guidelines and tips for organising an effective corporate advertising campaign


The objective of advertising is to sell products or services, to make the brand or organization known.  The company pays the advertisement company to have a message that simultaneously explains its brand or product distributed to as many people as possible.  It is also designed to win an audience over to a point of view.  Such advertising is called institutional or corporate advertising.

Advertising can be national or local; it can address itself to any kind of audience; it can use any medium. When designed it often resembles editorial matter in the newspapers and magazines, offering an opinion or point of view. An obvious example of institutional advertising is a full-page ad in the Sunday New York Times urging some political action or appealing for funds. Often such advertising is an exercise in self-praise. It attempts to build a favorable image for its sponsor.

Image is particularly important among organizations whose products or services are relatively uniform. How a company advertises projects that image. The image must be concise, express the mission of the company, and its delivery must be consistent each time it is used.

If an attempt to sell a product creeps into institutional advertising, it does so in a passive voice. It can be aimed at a business, a consumer, or involve two businesses and slanted as a cooperative advertising. No matter its form, corporate advertising is meant to highlight and publicize the actions, products, or services of a company.

Corporate Advertising Techniques

Media such as TV, radio, print, and online delivers advertising from corporations and institutions to the public or a targeted consumer group. Conventional ads, such as those seen in newspapers or magazines, banner ads online, and commercials heard and seen on TV and radio, communicate corporate messages to the public in the hopes that the desired action is taken; a sale, an enrolment, an inquiry, etc. Corporate advertising can take the form of advice, offer helpful information in times of crisis, congratulate a public or political figure, or announce a special event or occurrence that is of interest to a well-defined group or demographic. It is passive advertising that guides with an implied called to action that is subtle, unconventional, and never clearly stated, but the desired results is always the same; to get someone to take action or pay attention to something that is advantageous to the corporation or institution.

Institutional advertising use the same approaches and techniques that apply to product-oriented advertising: image, branding techniques, clear messaging, a call to action, and selling benefits as opposed to features. These characteristics are applicable to commercial as well as to social marketing activities. It is part of the “promotional mix” that exists within the discipline of marketing.

Advocacy Advertising

Advocacy advertising is related to institutional advertising. The difference is that in advocacy advertising, the sponsor pushes a point of view that may have nothing to do with selling the product or building an image.

According to Professor Robert Shayon of the University of Pennsylvania Annenberg School of Communications, corporations have taken to advocacy advertising because they feel they are not getting a fair shake from what they believe to be a generally hostile press; and because they are convinced that the business world can make significant contributions to public debate on issues of great importance-energy, nuclear power, conservation, environment, taxation, and free enterprise, among others.

Some state legislatures have drafted laws to restrict this kind of advertising, and the Internal Revenue Service does not regard the advertising as a necessary business expense. However, it is difficult to identify the difference between advocacy advertising and institutional advertising, which is a tax-deductible expense.



Founded in January 1964 as Blue Ribbon Sports (BRS) by University of Oregon track athlete Philip Knight and his coach Bill Bowerman, the company was initially a distributor for the Japanese shoemaker Onitsuka Co and their brand Tiger.  In 1966, it opened the first BRS retail store in Sana Monica, California.

In those days, Bowerman would often rip apart the Tiger brand shoes to see how he could make them lighter and better.  He used to take help from university runners to test his creations and collect their feedback.  By 1971, through BRS revenue had touched $1 million, the business relationship with Onitsuka was turned sour.  So, they moved on from being distributors of athletic footwear to designers and manufactures of athletic footwear and took full control over their value chain.  In 1973, they called their brand Nike after the Greek goddess of victory.  A design student Carolyn Davidson created the famous ‘swoosh’ logo for $35.  Today, they estimated market value of Nike is about $10.7 billion.


Like all advertising campaigns, good corporate advertising is effective on different levels.  Its value is always a function of its objectives and the quality of its content.


Brand awareness is the first and crucial stage of consumer’s preference.  It referred to the strength of a brand’s presence in the consumers’ mind (Aakers, 1996).  Nike has been successful in building awareness.  The ‘Swoosh” symbol has been appeared everywhere, on shoes, hats, billboards and soccer balls across the globe too remarkably to such extent that one author used the title “the Swooshification of the world” on sports illustrated column that imaged a future which the swoosh could surpass sports to become “a letter of the alphabet and the new presidential seal, among other things” (Keller, 2008).

Nike has been a recognized brand name even by the youngest group (aged from 4 to 6 years old).  Nike has built its brand awareness by sponsorship, advertising and experience focused retailing.  Strategy used by Nike is by athlete endorsement which can be considered as the most significant success of Nike Brand.

Nike has been invested millions of dollars to associate their brand names with famous athletes.  With the aim of brand image building (1.6 dollars is spent on multiyear athlete endorsement by Nike according to Horrow (2007).  Athletes at the top of their respective sport such as Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, and Lance Armstrong who are popular and respected by fans of the brand’s target audience are chosen as endoresers to associate the Nike brand with the athlete’s celebrity image.  Tiger Woods and Nike annual sales for Nike Golf have exceeded to nearly $500 million dollars with an estimated 24 percent growth per year in the first five years of the agreement (Pike, 2006 cited by Carlson and Donavan, 2008).


The willingness of a customer to buy a certain product or a certain service is known as purchase intention.  Strong brand images, such as Nike improve perceptions of quality and benefits, reduce perceived risk and soften the consumer tendency to evaluate only the basis of price.  Taken together, these factors all improve consumer purchase intentions.  Luring by “good shoe with innovative functionality” and athletic aspiration value, Nike has indeed come to ‘mind’ and ‘heart’ of its customers.  By the mid of 1990s, 77 percent of male Americans from the age of 18 to 25 chose Nike as their “favourite shoe”, according to Rozanski et al (1999).  The figure still remains stably despite of the “up” and “down” year Nike has been experience, gaining the high score of customer satisfaction at 79 percent rated by The American Customer Satisfaction Index Organization (2009).

It could be said that loyalty to the Nike brand is driven by many external and internal factors such as brands’ subjective and objective characteristics and loyalty building programs.

One visible example of creating innovative method to capture the strong relationships with Nike users is that creating innovative method to capture the strong relationships with Nike users is that creating, a social network site for football fans.  Launching quietly in the early 2006, the site become an instant hit, peaking at 7.5 million viewers when Nike showed Ronaldinho video clips, according to Nike (2006).  More than 1 million members from 140 countries signed up by mid July.  In this site, fans can create their personal blogs, build communities around favorite teams or players, download video and organize pickup games.  By enrolling consumers in building and shaping the content of the website, Nike pulled their loyal customers closer, nurtured deeper bonds of loyalty and advocacy. (kotler and Armstrong, 2007)


Brand attitude is an opinion of consumers toward a product determined through market research.  The brand attitude will tell what people think about a product or service, whether the product answers a consumer need, and just how much the product is wanted by the consumer.  Knowledge of brand attitude is very helpful in planning an advertising campaign.

Attitude can be broken into different characteristics: hedonic and utilarian (Voss, Spangenberg, & Grohman) Measuring the Hedonic and Utilitarian Dimenstions of consumer Attitude, 2013).  As stated by Voss, Spangenberg, and Crowley (1977), “We use goods in two ways.  We use goods as symbols of stateus, and simultaneously as instruments to achieve some end in view”(235).  While utilitarian and hedonic characteristics are different in nature, they are not necessarily exclusive from one another.  Many times, a consumer will weigh both attitudinal functions when making a purchase decision.  Depending on the situation, one factor could have more weight than another (Batra & Ahtola, 1990).

Hedonic Attitude

According to Voss, Spangenberg, and Grohman, (2003) “The hedonic dimension results from sensations derived from the experience of using products” (p.310).  Hedonic attitude generates from an individual’s sensory attributes.  It has also been described as the function of consumer behavior that relate an individual’s emotions to their product experience (Voss, Spangenber, & Crowley, 1997). Hedonic attitude can be desrivbed as how a consumer feels towards and agrees with a product or service (Batra & Ahtola, 1990).   Based on how a consumer feels about a product or service, it is easy to see that hedonic attitude aligns with self-concept.

Utilitarian Attitude

As mentioned previously, utilitarian attitude concepts align with many of the same concepts as functional congruity.  Sharaon Shavvit (1989) states that, “The role of attitude in maintaining rewards is referred to as the utilitarian function” (125).  Utilitarian dimentions are generated from the functions that consumer’s receive from products (Voss, Spangenberg, & Grohman, measuring the Hedonic and Utilitarian Dimensions of consumer Attitude, 2013).  In other words, how useful/functional is a product/service to a given consumer?


Effective corporate advertising are far more than selling.  In order to sell your product or services you need to have the answer for your ‘what, why, where, when, who and how’ to understand what to deliver to customers.  Here are some guidelines and tips for effective corporate advertising campaign.

  1. Target AudienceAn advertising campaign should be geared toward your niche market. It is a common mistake to create generic ads that do not speak the language or grab the attention of your potential customers. Ask yourself what kind of customers you want to attract, and make sure your ads speak to them on a personal level.
  2. Establish an image
  • Effective corporate advertising should be memorable
  1. Resonate with consumers by ringing true and delivering a personally meaningful message, even if the brand has a huge target audience like Nike’s
  2. Communicate how the product or service fits into consumers’ lives or work to make them better, more productive, happier, more fulfilled
  3. Stand for values above and beyond the product or service
  • Be inextricably linked to the brand, so the ad won’t be attributed to a competitor

Winning brands combine powerful, meaningful, inspirational messages delivered in ways that touch their audiences, with great products and services that perform to expectations, are credible and trustworthy.  Great ad campaigns are often founded on deep psychological insights.  The messages, delivered in novel and thought-provoking ways, increase the odds they’ll be shared virally by brand fans, who further add credibility and awareness.  Great campaigns help brands avoid being commoditized and compete only on price.  They increase loyalty and good will, and can encourage purchase across more items within the brand umbrella.

Here are some examples of powerful advertisement;


Dove’s Campaign For Real Beauty, followed by the Sketches Campaign is designed to encourage debate regarding the definition of beauty and how women see themselves.  Unilever  created a public dialog about a deeply important message that challenged stereotypical views of beauty.  Their goal was to make more women feel beautiful, appreciate themselves more, and feel more confident. Like Nike’s message, it’s empowering, inclusive, and broadly relatable.  The umbrella campaign supports a very broad product line.  Unilever engaged psychologists to uncover and explore the depth and breadth of the insight.


Nike’s Find Your Greatness Campaign touches all of us because it’s such a positive inclusive message.  It says we don’t need to be technically amazing, as long as we try and do our own personal best.  The message inspires everyone.  It follows Nike’s  previous message of Just Do It!: also broadly meaningful because it says “action is better than no action” and because it pushes people to take a risk, try something new, do something they’ve always wanted to.  The implication is that Nike products are there to back us up and help you accomplish our personal goals.


Nike name have been a brand with concepts of victory, success and speed.  Nike has been keeping its great speed in the fierce competitive environment.  Nike’s three communication effects of corporate advertising have shown that Nike is brand with many fans.

Nike’s recruitment advertisement and benefit published in the website easily attract anyone to try their luck to be part of Nike’s team.

Nike has touched people heart with its powerful advertisement with the help of famous athlete and sponsored.


“Corporate Advertising.” Boundless Marketing Boundless, 20 Sep. 2016. Retrieved 14 Mar. 2017 from

Essays, UK. (November 2013). Nike Brand Equity. Retrieved from

Greenwald, Michelle. “Secrets Of 7 Of The Most Effective Ad Campaigns.” Forbes. N.p., 10 July 2014. Web. 3 Mar. 2017.

Jarome conlon, M.R. (August 6, 2015). Branding Strategy Insider . Retrieved 16 March, 2017, from

Michelle Sanusi, Alexander Lazarev, Jesper Milling Jorgensen, Vasyl Latsanych and Taimuraz Badtiev    Delhi     Print Edition: July 6, 2014. Business Today.(July 6, 2014)

“Top 10 Tips for an Effective Advertising Campaign.” All Business. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Mar. 2017.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: