First Prize in the 2014 The Case Award ('Knowledge, Information and Communication System' Category), organized by The Case Centre, United Kingdom

Digital Marketing at Nike: From Communication to Dialogue

Digital Marketing at Nike: From Communication to Dialogue
Case Code: MKTG297
Case Length: 16 Pages
Period: 2004-2012
Pub Date: 2012
Teaching Note: Not Available
Price: Rs.500
Organization : Nike
Industry : Sportswear and apparel
Countries : Global
Themes: Customer Service, Customer Relationship Management S
Digital Marketing at Nike: From Communication to Dialogue
Abstract Case Intro 1 Case Intro 2 Excerpts


In 2010, Nike, Inc. (Nike), the leading sportswear and equipment manufacturer in the world, launched a new business division called Nike Digital Sport (NDS). The main objective of NDS was to develop devices and technologies which would allow users to track their performance while helping the company get a hold over some vital consumer data like their work-out patterns. Nike hoped to better understand the habits and preferences of its customers and thereby communicate more effectively with them about their needs through NDS. NDS released a major product called the FuelBand which tracked the energy output of the wearer.

The FuelBand, when synced with Nike’s earlier blockbuster offering, Nike+, helped Nike to gather information about its customers. NDS was part of Nike’s aggressive shift from traditional marketing to digital marketing strategies. Nike’s digital marketing had its roots in the launch of its website ‘’ in 1996 and its online store in 1999. The website, which was redesigned in 2005, offered a service called ‘NIKEiD’ using which customers could design their own shoes online. Nike would then make and deliver the products as per the specifications given by the customers. Later, Nike expanded its presence across several social networking sites which were increasingly being used by its core customer base. It launched its own social networking service1 called Nike+ in 2006 which facilitated its customers to share their data regarding running records and other health statistics with other users of the service.

Nike drastically increased its allocation to the digital media while cutting allocation to traditional media like print and television. The company had plans to further increase its digital marketing efforts in the future. Many analysts hailed Nike’s push toward digital marketing. However, some analysts criticized its digital marketing strategies as having too narrow a focus and for ignoring some important customer segments. As of early 2012, the challenge before the Director for Nike's Global Digital Brand and Innovation, Jesse Stollak (Stollak), and his team was to evolve the digital marketing strategy and take Nike to the next level of growth.

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