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The Brand That Took Over Instagram!

Updated: Jul 22, 2019

Nike is slated as no. 19 as the most popular account on Instagram. Obviously having close to 90 million followers on Instagram is no easy feat, their biggest competitor Adidas, pales in comparison to Nike success on the platform (shown with the data comparisons below).

But what did Nike do that let them claim victory on Instagram?

Over the past years we've seen numerous of brands successfully advertised themselves on Instagram. Companies like Nikes, and Vans have been using the platform, and other new media platform to cater to a wider audience. The thing is though, it works.

According to statistics by Internet World Stats data taken in March 2019, there are currently more than 4.5 billion active internet users in this world.

Now in 2019, it doesn't take a middle schooler to realise the rivalry between Nike and Adidas. Both companies would hire numerous prolific artists (I.e Nike with Kendrick Lamar, Beyonce, etc.) to represent their brand, obviously some of their more die hard fans to emulate their style by buying the product.


Nike take on advertising doesn't target their audience in the conventional sense through flashy objects, or by how useful their products will be for the everyday consumer. Rather this method of marketing target the audiences emotions, and by tackling a topical subject this would increased the widespread appeal/dislike of the video. Take the "Dream Crazier" marketing campaign that Nike released earlier in 2019, the video showcased the hardship professional women athletes have to go through. What their naysayer would say to try and bring them down, and how they rose to prominence despite while also expressing how they take pride from it.

Professional tennis player Serena William was one of the sportswoman whom star in the ad.

Another of Nike marketing campaign in the year 2018 star the now controversial football star, Colin Kaepernick. Although the campaign focusing on Kaepernick might have dropped Nike stock by 2% in the short-term, this however managed to raise public opinion of Nike in the eyes of the masses. Even with the drop in 2% of share, the "Dream Crazy" campaign ended being a successful one garnering close to 30 million views on Youtube (by the time of writing).

Kaepernick was nominated an Emmy for his work in "Dream Crazy"

With both campaign we see Nike using their trademark of emotional marketing to a resounding success. Adidas however took the complete opposite route. The celebrities that they've chosen did not come with an emotional message they're trying to convey, instead the product would be constantly framed from time to time as the hired celebrities convey their line. The advertising felt more stiff, and lacks the emotional weight that Nike has.

This is also further exemplified by their Adidas instagram, shown below.

Most recent Instagram feed for Adidas (as of the time this was written).

4 of the 6 most recent posts are clear advertising for their new product, and the other two focuses on their clients. Nike does the complete opposite of what Adidas has done.

Most recent Instagram feed for Nike (as of the time this was written).

With Nike there was only 1 of the 5 recent posts that acts as a clear advertising of their product, the other works as a storytelling medium.

Perhaps it's no surprise that Nike managed to capture the hearts of many, the compelling stories in their marketing campaign acts as a point of interest for their audience. It clearly is no stretch to say that, when you buy a Nike product you buy for the experience and not for the product itself.

And that is how Nike took over Instagram. With the right content and planning, anyone can have their brand experience a skyrocket success. The question, is your brand ready to be next?

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