SoMoLo Marketing Best Practices – A Nike Marketing Case Study

So (Social) Mo (Mobile) Lo (Local) is an effective marketing strategy for the new landscape, requiring an in-depth understanding of today’s consumer. I’ve written quite a bit on the topic, including 5 Must-Have’s In Any SoMoLo Strategy and am always on the lookout for successful application. As discussed in my last post, SoMoLo Marketing: Nike Case Study, Nike’s marketing strategy embraces and executes SoMoLo effectively.

This is a follow-up post which will explore Nike’s strategy in more detail.

Nike’s Latest Running App Features are SoMoLo

The latest version (4.0) of the Nike+running app touts features that clearly integrate Social, Mobile, and Local into a powerfully relevant consumer experience. Creating a feature that primarily focuses on adding value to the user experience connects with consumers giving them a reason to interact with Nike’s marketing assets on a regular basis.

The experience is engaging, renewable and entertaining; but it’s all of these because it offers utility and speaks the consumer’s language not marketing speak.

SOCIAL utility consumers can enjoy from the latest version of the app:

  • Share your runs and get cheers from your friends on Path
  • Introducing post-run Facebook friend tagging
  • Share your runs on Facebook to see your “Running Buddies” and “Cheer Squad”

MOBILE utility of Nike’s latest running app:

  • Compete against yourself with new challenges right on the home screen
  • A new navigation layout makes navigating between settings, activity, and profile simple and intuitive
  • Clearer in-run screens makes changing your music or controlling your runs even easier

LOCAL benefits to consumers using Nike’s latest app:

  • Automatic weather tagging will inform of the local weather after your run
  • Track every mile you log in your shoes with post-run shoe tagging

Nike Marketing Effectively Incorporates Mobile

I like to distinguish mobility from mobile. Let me explain. Mobile strategy tends to focus on assets like smartphones or tablets, for example, whereas mobility is focused on behaviors. While both require some kind of technology, I believe mobility requires more context.

I realize there are subtle differences; however I think the distinction is important. Looking at the visual Nike case study below, note the use of tailored app options. Apps are tailored to consumer interests and they track information appropriate to the activity.

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Nike has covered all the bases, making it easy for the user to access their needs with the touch of the screen. In addition to the apps available by interest, there is even an option that focuses on the product (see Fuel Band in the visual below).

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Furthermore, some of the apps are free while others have to be purchased.

To make it even more appealing and user-friendly, several of the options have a video effectively explaining the app functionality and benefit.

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Nike Marketing Strategy Uses Visual Images

Using high definition visual imagery is an increasingly important requirement for marketers. The surging popularity of visual sites like Pinterest are important considerations because these platforms are capable of driving significant traffic to websites and, more importantly, they are effective tools that consumers can use to share their experiences with others. So there is both a direct and indirect benefit.

The use of simplistic language, the variety of activities depicted and the diversity of consumers represented are effective at brilliantly showcasing the Nike brand message at-a-glance. Successful marketing must capture the brand essence swiftly, with just a visual scan.

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Nike Uses Local Subtly

As I pointed out in red on the visual below, local utility is present in Nike’s marketing. I like the way Nike doesn’t try to force fit all the elements of SoMoLo, instead they link the pieces together in an integrated fashion, like putting together a puzzle. Once connected, the individual pieces reveal the picture, although each piece has a distinctive shape; what’s important is the overall picture, not the individual piece.

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Nike Marketing SoMoLo Best Practices

Based on examining the #makeitcount home page, here is a summary of best practices so far…

Focus on consumers – Know who your consumers are, how they are using your product or service, how they are likely to interact with each other. Ensure that content and message is about THEM not your product or service. Do the work to integrate your product into their experience.

Provide options – Consumers have different interests, where possible tailor your offerings specifically to those interests. While it’s necessary to have a generic offering let that be the secondary offer not the primary focus.

Make sharing easy – Provide familiar connections to appropriate social media platforms. Reinforce sharing using clear, compelling calls to action. Nike has done a masterful job of tailoring the message around personal growth, competition and connection.

Effectively use visuals – Use pictures and videos to teach, share, inspire and entertain. Increasingly consumers are quickly scanning looking and reading less.

Link assets together – Consumers can access appropriate videos, find out about products or start sharing with the click of a button from the home page this is really important. While brands want to offer value they still are in business to make a profit.

Use Content effectively – Content should be clear, engaging, informative and renewable. Provide reasons for consumers to return and stay engaged. Nike has tailored the entire experience in a manner that is useful.

Provide utility – Consumers are engaged because the focus of the offering adds value to their lives by allowing them to stay or get in shape. Focusing on the benefit to the consumer results in a consumer more engaged with the brand.

Simplify – Despite all the options and possibilities, the site is clean. Images, apps and video carry more than their fair share of the load. The copy does a nice job directing and guiding one through the assets. Don’t confuse consumers with clutter.

There are plenty more aspects of Nike marketing that I could drill down on in this post, but I’ll save those for another day. I’ll continue to keep my eye out for SoMoLo marketing case studies, from businesses both large and small. What are some brands you’ve noticed effectively applying SoMoLo marketing best practices?

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