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SoMoLo Marketing: Nike Case Study

What is So(Social)Mo(Mobile)Lo(Local)?

SoMoLo is an acronym, short for Social, Mobile, Local.  As detailed in What is SoMoLo and Why is it Important to Marketers, SoMoLo is an accurate description of today’s consumer, and at the intersection of these three variables, Marketers can connect with consumers, presenting endless opportunity potential. If Marketers aren’t able to define or locate that sweet spot for their target, their marketing efforts will be disjointed, an uphill battle to increase ROI.

Four Ways Social Media Will Enhance Your SoMoLo Campaign is a good read to get your wheels spinning on utilizing social platforms that you may already be engaged with.

SoMoLo a growing trend?

It’s the time of year when most of us are thinking about the implications of trends. I believe So (social) Mo (mobile) Lo (Local) is one of the more interesting trends. Some feel this is just another popular acronym that marketers are using to sell their services.

There is certainly a lot of marketing activity in each of these three important areas. However, what is different about SoMoLo are the opportunities available where these three intersect.

Nike Marketing Case Study

Nike marketing strategy embraces and executes SoMoLo effectively. Previously Nike has primarily used a strategy that could best be described as hero worship. Basically, Nike would sign an endorsement deal with a top athlete in a sport... think Michael Jordan basketball or Tiger Woods golf; if you are a sports fan you can think of others.

Next Nike would create ads that would focus on the star athlete using and actively endorsing Nike products with the clear message “I use this product and so should you.” I am not criticizing this strategy; it’s worked very well for Nike.

New Landscape requires a new Nike Marketing Plan

While Nike is a large and powerful brand, they realize that smaller upstart brands, like Under Armor, can be a competitive threat. In order to maintain their competitive edge, Nike realized they would need to think differently.  Whether you're a brand name recognized globally (like Nike) or a smaller "mom and pop" shop, mastering your social marketing goals will require you to think differently.

For Nike, thinking differently meant creating a new group to develop an entirely different product set. This was the beginning of a whole new marketing approach, one that focused on the digital and social space. It was a radical shift from hero to community.

Nike Marketing Analysis - An Evolving Marketing Strategy

I have been following Nike’s new approach closely. Recently I noticed their new #makeitcount campaign. This particular campaign is a textbook case study on implementing an effective SoMoLo strategy.

Nike has created a brand experience within their property with this makeitcount landing page. Notice how the entire focus of the message is consumer focused. Let’s take a look at the It’s about “we” and “you” setting personal goals, challenging each other making things happen. The timing and emphasis is masterful.

So far there is not even a product mention it’s all about lifestyle and personal achievement. For those familiar with social media, the use of #makeitcount is a clever way to spark conversation in the social space, especially on Twitter. Using the hashtag will draw the attention of others, it’s a way to create a conversation in the social space.

Notice how easy it is for consumers to share this content with their friends on Twitter and Facebook. What’s important here is Nike is not just saying “Like us” or “Follow us,” they are giving the consumer something to do, a message to share but not a controlled script, a concept. Seeding the conversation with a challenge is a very clever technique for drawing in consumers, especially influencers.

I really like the way the photo presents a living image of the message; it is consistent and represents the message very effectively.


This Nike Case Study Reinforces simplicity and clarity.

Immediately following a compelling image with a distinct message that is ready to be shared are three simple steps for getting involved. In Switch, the textbook on change written by the Health brothers, one of the three necessary requirements for effective change is a clear path forward.

With these three graphics Nike has provided clear instruction both visually and with the written word. I really like the way the brand is integrated seamlessly and appropriately into the message and process. In fact they have deftly become part of the solution.


SoMoLo and Nike Marketing Strategy to be continued...

I find marketing case studies are helpful guides for implementing change. By understanding the elements of an approach we can emulate those characteristics and principles that are universal in nature. Part of thinking differently is exploring new approaches others have taken.

Nike, clearly on top of their SoMoLo marketing strategy, has effectively engaged consumers with clear calls to action and a clear path forward. This is appealing to their target consumer, as it offers motivation to be active, friendly competition and local advantages.

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