How One Company Changed the World of Brand Marketing

Relevancy is the key to marketing. Without relevancy, you have no demand for the product or services you offer. One company that has remained relevant

Nike has consistently stuck to their brand message since its creation in 1971. Since its creation, Nike’s storytelling has transcended cultural barriers. Allowing the brand to succeed worldwide.

Co-founder Bill Bowerman once said, “If you have a body, you are an athlete.”

Their slogan “Just do it.” is simple, yet resounds with the part of every person that finds a reason to not do something, and the satisfaction they feel when they resist that voice and just do it. That ethos is mixed into every Nike story.

Since 1987, when Nike fought the struggle of remaining relevant in a country where obesity and procrastination were at an all-time high, and broadened their brand story to appeal to baby boomer fitness enthusiasts and women. They reminded people of the happiness exercise brings to one’s life. Reminded them of the ability of exercise to raise your spirits.

They released their “Revolution” campaign in 1988, which included The Beatles song and female athletes.


And the first “Just Do It” commercial, including older community members.



To 2018, when Nike released it’s groundbreaking ad narrated by Colin Kaepernick. Which roused the nation.



Social media was inundated with what seemed like everyone’s opinion on the ad. The opinions varied severely, one side criticizing Nike for choosing Kaepernick as the “hero” of the campaign, the other side praising Nike for shining a positive light on Kaepernick and his cause.

Fans posted videos to social media with the hashtag “NikeBoycott”, burning their Nike attire, taking a stance against the brand and what they chose to promote.




Nike didn’t respond to the extreme, negative feedback on their campaign, because they didn’t need to. Supporters of the campaign, mixed with people of the opinion that the protest was pointless.







Although controversial, Nike chose someone who started a revolution. Staying true to their first campaign, and maintaining brand consistency. In sticking to their decision to have Kaepernick be the face of their campaign, Nike rode out the protest and came out more successful than ever, having captivated the nation and stirred people’s emotions, making the Nike the most talked about brand in 2018.

As writer’s for the web, this brand story is incredibly pertinent. What we should learn from Nike’s story is how to build our personal brand and content, how to maintain consistency with both, and how to deal with criticism of both.

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