Get People Talking: Kaepernick controversy ad by NIKE
It’s been two years since Colin Kaepernick first took a knee to protest against racial injustice especially police harshness towards people of color. All this started when Colin Karpernick, former American Football quarterback knelt and sat down during US National Anthem before his team’s preseason games of 2016, this demonstration spawned mixed reactions, some called him disrespectful and unpatriotic while others backed his action. He was the initiator and ultimately many NFL players joined the protest.
NIKE ad featuring Kaepernick was released two days after revealing their print ad, “Just Do It” campaign in connection with brand’s 30th anniversary. The two minute ad is narrated by Kaepernick himself, NBA player LeBron James, tennis icon Serena Williams, Odell Beckham Jr, Eluid Kipchoge, Lacey Baker, Shaquem Griffin, wheelchair Basket Ball player Megan Blunk, Zeina Nassar and Isaiah Bird, exceptional wrestler born without legs are the others featured in the commercial.
NIKE run the ad first during NFL regular season opener between the Atlanta Falcons and Philadelphia Eagles on September 5th receiving huge backlash, including brand boycott. President of United States himself slammed his outlook against the ad in an interview. As per CNBC, Nike share declined to 3 percent and later gained record breaking 4.5 percent increase. According to Canacord Genuity report majority of consumers support Nike, thus brand could see sales boost by Kaeprnick ad. After all a brand ultimately want is , get people talking.
Here the brand takes its opinion, takes stand for a social cause. Moreover, Nike knew what they were doing by taking up the face of Kaepernick to an ad campaign that represents their brand profile. They were so sure about the backlash it would receive for choosing Kaepernick but they also knew it would be worth it in the end. Aftermath of the campaign according to Apex marketing group shows that, Nike received 43 million worth of media exposure in just 24hours and also shows some high escalation in sales.
As a conclusion we can see that how effectively a controversy turned into bliss, it has intended positive result by increasing brand’s perception in consumer mind. Nike chose their potential clients over others which in turn made them more solid… yes!!! NIKE they “Just Did It”…