Just Do It Social Media Case Study: Nike

Just Do It Social Media Case Study: Nike

Nike is a powerhouse athletic gear brand no doubt. Their brand image is recognized around the globe and consumers both love and trust their products. Personally (and with full disclosure), when I need a new pair of running shoes, I look to Nike. Lately I’ve been on the hunt for a more fashion forward pair of athletic shoes, and all I want is a pair of Nike’s throwback Air Max 95s. They’ve built a culture through their slogan, “Just do it,” and seamlessly combine style and athletic purpose in every design.

Nike’s motivational message and dedication to design was MADE for social media. At the bottom of their website, Nike lists Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube as their social media platforms. Nike is able to capture the inspiration given by professional athletes such as Michael Jordan along with the motivation provided by non-athletes who complete their goals. A great social media campaign they recently released was about comedian Kevin Hart training for his first marathon. The videos were motivational because they allowed customers to view a non-traditionally athletic person, Kevin Hart, utilize Nike products to reach his athletic goals. Nike understands, better than most brands, that it is not about their shoes but rather the experience that their shows offer, and the Kevin Hart campaign is a perfect example of this.

Twitter: 7.39 Million Followers

Nike tweets about once a week, if not less. Their content is filled with imagery and videos that help define the Nike brand and create awareness amongst followers. The Nike page is also filled with retweets of posts from their sponsored athlete. These Nike sponsored athletes post pictures and videos of their successes, sport and everyday life while wearing Nike gear. In many cases, having influencers wear products could feel unnatural and staged. However, Nike seems to be mindful about their overall strategy to sell through inspiration and chooses authentic influencers and imagery.

Nike’s tweets combine sports education, news and brand awareness seamlessly. However, their posting cadence is slow. For such a large company in the fast-paced industry of sports, we believe they should be tweeting at least three times throughout week. Nike has the world of sports and a large number of athletes at their fingertips, which should allow them to tweet significantly more than they currently are. This is necessary for Nike to stay relevant on Twitter while competing for attention. Currently, both Reebok and Under Armour are tweeting almost every single day with similar content to Nike. With this incredibly competitive environment, Nike is focusing on producing incredible content which is wise. We would just like to see more of it.

Facebook: 30,118,436 Likes

Nike’s Facebook presence is similar to Twitter, however it has a more inspirational feel. Instead of focusing on sports news and athletic education, Nike uses their Facebook page to share inspirational athletic stories while still highlighting their sponsored athletes. Their audience on Facebook is incredibly engaged and each post tends to get thousands of shares and likes. I’m giving Nike a gold star for keeping their content Facebook specific, however they still have a slow posting cadence! On Facebook, Nike is posting less than once a week, which is hard to justify. When I noticed that nothing had been posted between February 16th and March 1st, my jaw LITERALLY dropped, and I’m pretty sure the barista watching me became concerned. Good. He should be concerned. From a content marketing point of view, this lull in updates is unacceptable. I am the first person to argue for quality over quantity. However, Nike can’t tell me they don’t have access to quality content every single day…. Heck they could probably create a quality sports related post every 5 seconds if they so desired. Come on Nike, just do it. (Advisory: Think Media Consulting does not recommend Nike or anyone else, for that matter, posts on Facebook every 5 seconds. Lydia simply wanted to acknowledge Nike’s ease of access to tons of great content.)

Okay, carrying on… On Nike’s defense, they made a killer comeback on March 1st with a 2 minute “Choose Go” video about how the earth stopped turning on it’s axis and was put back into motion by every human running in the same direction, while simultaneously wearing Nike shoes. The video incorporated Nike sponsored athletes such as Kobe Bryant, Edinson Cavani and more jumping out of helicopters, running through walls and joining the movement to get the earth turning again. The video also featured Kevin Hart starting to run in the wrong direction, which was funny because it’s Kevin Hart. The inspirational aspect of this video was that the entire “running to get the world turning” movement started with a single young lady lacing up her Nike’s, wanting to make a difference.

Here’s the link… https://www.facebook.com/nike/videos/10155886264428445/

Instagram: 76.3 Million Followers

By just glancing at Nike’s Instagram, viewers are met with captivating images filled with determination, creativity and inspiration. More than half of Nike’s Instagram posts are videos that are entertaining and deliver value to their viewers. Nike’s posting cadence is more acceptable on Instagram with a new post every few days. Nike continues to use Kevin Hart as a motivational character by sharing his athletic journey through the hash tag #ChooseGo. In a video posted just a couple of days ago, Kevin is running on a treadmill inside of a moving glass truck. While driving around Las Angeles, he yells at pedestrians and fellow drivers through a microphone connected to the treadmill. At the end of the video he says, “You’re either honking because you love me, or honking because I’m stopping traffic. Either way I’m going to take it as support.”


Nike should keep up with posting great video content as their followers are engaging more with videos than images. While Nike didn’t have a story posted at the time of this blog being written, we know they utilize this platform because they have three stories saved at the top of their profile. This is a great way for them to get attention from their followers and seem more relatable to their audience.

YouTube: 726K Subscribers

Nike is utilizing this platform well. Nike posts new videos almost every week that range between 30 seconds to an hour. The videos contain brand education content about new products, interviews with athletes and inspirational commercials. This is a useful platform for them to reach customers searching for more in depth educational and entertaining content. Along with the Facebook “Choose Go” video about the earth stopping, they released more videos for the same campaign featuring different athletes and celebrities. Their latest video is a tribute to Serena Williams who ends a video featuring her career by saying, “There’s no wrong way to be a woman.” https://youtu.be/Ripg_LfJIeM Well done Nike! Well done!

Keep up the inspirational content, Nike. We see your strategy and wish to see more content consistently. Just do it, please.


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