You'll still be able to find star athletes like Messi in big promotional campaigns, but sports companies are finding new ways to reach their consumer by tapping into key influencers in sports and fitness. For example, adidas has recognized that their male market is the "Do it all high schooler." This consumer is influenced by all-stars in all sports, he is usually involved in his high school beyond his team, he cares about his community, and wants to be look and feel sporty at all times. James Harden has been a create resource to adidas as he exhibits hard work, success in sport, and stepping away from the crowd and challenging yourself.
On the other hand, adidas's female market wants to describe herself as fit and active. She likely attends various fitness classes throughout the week to keep her exercise routine interesting and fun. She wears her athletic clothes for exercising, errands, and around the house. This consumer is influenced by bloggers, models, and exercise innovators that will help keep routines interesting and effective.
Recently, adidas brought on Karlie Kloss to their branding team. Karlie is a supermodel, coder, philanthropist, best friend of Taylor Swift, and obsessed with harnessing and expressing creativity. This perfectly aligns with adidas campaign to "Do it Different." By bringing Karlie on their team, adidas created a new market and utilized an influencer to reach people otherwise ignoring their advertising efforts.
In this video, you see how Karlie does more than show off her activity and athleticism, instead she is showing that women are more than their bodies. She supports the "fit and active" woman who values fitness as much as her passions and work.
These campaigns are changing the marketing strategy for all sports companies as well as altering culture's perspective of beauty. adidas is doing their marketing differently and its giving this consumer the opportunity to be more than an athlete; she can be a mom, scientist, dancer, nerd, poet, coffee enthusiast, skate boarder, anything!
I think this type of campaign is genius as it does more than offer a product, it creates a lifestyle change for consumers. Consumers see themselves in this supermodel creative and want to be like her. Not only under a superficial beauty lens but also in her active and hardworking lifestyle.
I hope adidas continues to utilize influencers in new ways to help mold their customers and culture to reflect activity and fitness more than superficial beauty standards.