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Mayweather Wins In adidas, but Under Armour Has a Narrative

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Mayweather wore down McGregor, a mixed-martial arts star making his debut as a professional boxer, in the early rounds to set up a punishing end. (pic Steve Marcus Reuters)

Source: Mayweather, a Defensive Mastermind, Beats McGregor With His Fists

The New York Times gives a description of the sweet science utilized in Mayweather beating McGregor.

On a night where the world was looking for something spectacular to happen, I was driving Lyft and getting people to every location in Memphis to participate in the festivities. The crowds were ridiculous at any venue carrying the match and as the night grew longer due to a problem with the Hi-def on pay-per-view, I decided to shut it down and head home. By the time I hit my door the fight was over and Mayweather had been declared victorious.

I found a stream from Daily Motion to watch the match, and then I took a moment to do what I was always do for the site, look at the match from a marketing perspective as it relates to sportswear. While boxing is not a sport that demands a steady stream of coverage, the cross training nature of the sport lends itself to the opportunity for serious cross promotion in sportswear. Every brand is missing this opportunity especially the brand with the greatest fighters in the world, Under Armour.

Under Armour could have pulled a Nike and made this event all about its top prospect on the undercard. Gervonta “Tank” Davis. Davis trained with Mayweather prior to the fight. Davis lost his belt before the match, due to not making his weight at 132, 2 lbs over) which creates an incredible opportunity for a training series for Under Armour. He won the match, but it was on a controversial punch. These are the narratives companies dream of. What did UA do? They currently have a dunk of Dennis Smith on their page…

No build up, content creation, no nothing about Davis, but that’s not the issue here. What is the issue?

adidas used a subversive approach to a championship. Mayweather typically doesn’t wear any brands products that he hasn’t consciously made a decision to promote during his fights. You know what brand is being featured prominently all over the pics of Mayweather’s win? adidas.

The brand hasn’t done any promo connected to the feet of Mayweather, but if I noticed, other’s noticed. Is it smart for adidas to align itself with Mayweather who is known for domestic abuse? Probably not, which is why there isn’t any marketing beyond pics on the Times and in other places.

adidas understands controversy in marketing. Under Armour doesn’t need controversy to win, but they have it. They have a built in narrative and it would be nice to see the brand capitalize and do something. I won’t hold my breath as they haven’t capitalized on their endorsers much at all via their own platforms.

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