Earlier this year I stated that adidas had failed the WNBA and the NBA with the work they didn’t do while having both leagues. It was a shame too since they had Candace Parker on their roster and she is by far the most marketable player in the WNBA, but I’ve written that story. I said that Nike would be a better fit for the league because they are a marketing company that sells sportswear. Their attention to the small details of sport amount to a great understanding of what makes a game, more than just a game.
When I first heard about this takeover I thought, “Nike is going to do this jersey thing in a way that has never been done before.” Which was obvious. What I didn’t expect was the use of augmented reality. Nike is the second footwear company to utilize AR this year. ASICS was the first:
An interactive jersey is only one element of Nike taking over the NBA. When you watch the video featuring this launch SNKRS (Nike’s online ordering system is tied into the tech). There are customized music playlists curated by athletes (I’m sure they will be primarily Nike athletes) and there will be videos fans can watch of their team. Nike has literally moved basketball from the past into the present. I recently said that footwear sales for basketball would have a hard time recovering because people aren’t watching basketball and kids aren’t playing anymore. More important Nike was relying heavily on the NBA to sell their footwear, but with dwindling television viewership relying on television was flawed.
With this augmented reality feature Nike is bringing basketball to the next generation where they are and it’s definitely a smart tactic that will undoubtedly introduce the game to a market that no longer buys hoop shoes the way they used to. Use the source link to read more.
Note: Nike is making sure to align the app with their champion. Smart move Nike, smart move.