Just Do It. Conscious choice or Enforcement?


Consumer behavior

Nowadays in consumer behavior more often occurs “imitation effect”, when the purchase is made only because other people have purchased the product. Some buyers make prestigious purchases of expensive goods in order to make an impression. Increasingly, these examples of consumer behavior are observed in the purchase of sports apparel. Today I will talk about consumer behavior towards Nike.

Brief history of the company

Nike was found in 1964 by student Phil Knight. During his MBA education at Stanford, Phil was taking lessons in the class of Frank Shallenberger. The task of one of the assignments was to develop a strategy of aphilipknight small private company, along with the marketing plan. According to legend, on this marketing seminar he came up with the idea of the company.

Three components of success

First of all, it is a name of a Company. Phil’s friend and at the same time, co-founder, Jeff Johnson suggested naming the company after the Greek goddess of victory Nike. The name is easy to remember and it carries a hidden meaning for the consumer.

Secondly, I assume that it is logo. Today people live in a world of signs. Swoosh, wing of the goddess Nike, the sound of cutting air – all this is Nike’s logo. Now it stands for a spirit of self-determination and frisky self-awareness.


Finally, the slogan of an advertising campaign. It was born by accident, but it has become one of the most famous slogans in the history. Even more, it began to be used in the daily language of millions of people.


In the past company sought to cooperate with the stars of sports. The most famous and most controversial contract was signed in 1985 with the famous American basketball player Michael Jordan. After signing the contract Michael Jordan actively advertised the brand. He even started to wear them in everyday life. This helped Nike to rehabilitate in the eyes of consumers and bring the popularity back to the brand, after a temporary decline in demand for company products.


Today and Future

Try to call to memory at least one of the late Nikes’ commercials that you have seen on TV. If you cannot – I am not surprised. Now Nike has an extensive reserve of interactive elements that allow them to intercommunicate with consumers directly. It can be a wristband that counts the energy consumption, billboard-sized 30-storey house in Johannesburg, or celebrities’ commercials on Facebook or Instagram.

According to experts, Nike believes that in the future will be able to exist without any major advertising campaigns on TV. The reason is simple: Nike always follows the consumer. This is a 17-year-old adolescent who spends on sportswear 20% more money than grown. Who prefers instead of watching TV to surf the internet. Nike does not just believe that will pass through the television. The company states that the digital kingdom gives Nike an opportunity to stand to their consumers as close as possible.


Choice or Influence?

Brand has two groups of consumers. The first group includes people who choose Nike because they love sport. Nike used deep motives and feelings of such people that have passion for sports and fitness. This has grown to a whole movement of people keen on the idea. Phil Knight announced that Nike’s job is not to sell shoes but to “enrich the lives of people playing sports and fitness”. On the other hand, the second group includes people who are willing to buy things just because celebrities get them and to purchase Nike products to impress their friends.

On my opinion Nike inspires consumers to crave shoes more as a status symbol. Not long ago I have watched Macklemore’s video on the song “Wings”. In this song he tells the story of a young boy who was trying to impress his peers with the help of Jordan sneakers. I think we all know such boys and girls. Do you?

Maclemore – Wings

Reference list

Foxall, GR 2015, Consumer behaviour: a practical guide, London : Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, 2015, retrieved 28 March 2016.

Goldman, R, & Papson, S 1998, Nike culture. [electronic resource] : the sign of the swoosh, London ; Thousand Oaks, Calif. : Sage Publications, 1998, retrieved 29 March 2016.

Philip Knight : the man who runs the world, 2014, [San Francisco, California, USA] : Kanopy Streaming, 2014, retrieved 27 March 2016.


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