By Sairra Misra
Nike’s recent advertisement that dropped on 5th September 2018, featuring NFL star Colin Kaepernick, states, “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.” Kaepernick sacrificed his position in the NFL to show his place in the Black Lives Matter movement. He decided to protest and sit during the playing of the American national anthem. This is why many people are now calling him out for it, as it is a sign of disrespect and also the reason why Nike customers are against the advertisement. However, ever since the advertisements release, Nike’s sales have surprisingly increased by 31%.
Nike has managed to stay one of the most successful sporting brands in the sporting goods market. Kaepernick has been contracted with Nike since 2011 and stopped playing for the NFL in 2016, after protesting for his Black Lives Matter movement.
According to Apex Marketing Group, just in the first four days of the campaign release, they have generated more than 163 million dollars in the media buzz, which clearly states how the advertisement paid off. Furthermore, in the first 24 hours of the release, 40% of publicity was positive, and only 30% was negative with 30% having no opinion.
Nike’s online sales have also increased by 31% only five days after the release on the 10th of September. People believe Nike is ridding itself of racist customers due to this new campaign. Other well-known athletes such as Serena Williams, also feature in the campaign.
Trump supporters and individuals who do not agree with Kaepernick, for kneeling down during the national anthem, are now boycotting Nike for having “no respect” for America. Some are even starting their own protest, by burning all Nike products that they already purchased, however, this does not impact Nike negatively. The protesters believe Kaepernick should not have been the face of Nike’s 30th anniversary, viewing him as “disrespecting” the national anthem. Trump has also called for all kneeling NFL players to be fired.
Many are against the advertisement campaign and Kaepernick’s actions. Those against the campaign believe raging anger and boycotts will drop Nike’s stocks. However, the company has benefited and Nike has gained more attention and the sales have flown through the roof. It is true that there is no such thing as bad publicity.