Nike vs. adidas: 2 ways to take a stand
86% of Americans believe that companies should take a stand for social issues. This has worked out very well for CVS, as we blogged about a few weeks ago. We’ll see how it works out for Nike.
Perhaps as a play to overcome accusations of sexual harassment, perhaps as a pure statement of their beliefs, Nike has taken a stand for social justice and equality by featuring Colin Kaepernick in its latest ad campaign. As you’ve probably read, this has been highly controversial, causing some people to destroy Nike products in protest. When people burned Beatles records to protest John Lennon’s comment that “the Beatles are bigger than Jesus,” it worked out quite well for the band. What better way to get teenagers to buy into your brand than to outrage a bunch of grown-ups?
Sustainability Win of the Week
While the jury’s still out for Nike, adidas just achieved a new milestone in its continuing fight against plastic waste in our oceans. The apparel brand collaborated with Parley for the Oceans to create special edition uniforms for the University of Miami football team “composed of over 70% regenerated ECONYL® yarn; a raw material transformed from fishing nets and other nylon waste intercepted in marine environments.” The uniforms are being auctioned off to raise money for the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science.
Though the Miami Hurricanes lost the game, the innovative uniforms were a big win: 1) they put a huge environmental – and increasingly, human health – issue right in front of mainstream audiences, 2) they helped the University of Miami directly involve their student-athletes and their fans in doing something good for the environment, and 3) they demonstrated a new way that adidas is meshing sustainability, innovation and product performance. This terrific sustainability story wouldn’t matter if the players had to sacrifice performance. Your business buyers and end consumers don’t want to trade off performance for the planet. They want both – and adidas has found a way to provide that.
News of the Week