Listed on Nike’s website is the following mission statement: OUR MISSION: TO BRING INSPIRATION AND INNOVATION TO EVERY ATHLETE* IN THE WORLD (*IF YOU HAVE A BODY, YOU ARE AN ATHLETE). I found this in the Business Day section of the New York Times and feel like it is a good representation of Nike’s market. “NIKE, Inc. (NIKE) is engaged in the design, development and worldwide marketing and selling of footwear, apparel, equipment, accessories and services. NIKE is a seller of athletic footwear and athletic apparel worldwide. The Company sells its products to retail accounts, through NIKE-owned retail stores and Internet sales, and through a mix of independent distributors and licensees, in approximately 190 countries around the world. The Company focuses its product offerings in seven key categories: Running, Basketball, Football (Soccer), Men's Training, Women's Training, NIKE Sportswear (its sports-inspired products) and Action Sports. It also markets products designed for kids, as well as for other athletic and recreational uses, such as baseball, cricket, golf, lacrosse, outdoor activities, football (American), tennis, volleyball, walking and wrestling.”
Sponsorship deals are one of Nike’s biggest and best market strategies. When Nike decided to sign Michael Jordan to a sponsorship deal in the mid-to-late 1980’s, it revolutionized the sports marketing world and made Nike into the worldwide brand it is today. Since then, they have had several sponsorship deals with pro athletes in other sports, but Nike’s next great sponsorship deal was with Tiger Woods. Tiger took Nike from an afterthought in the golf universe to a powerhouse. Nike’s success in signing deals with two of the best athletes to play in their respective sports before they were great was a stroke of genius. Nike’s deals with the NFL, three of the most prolific soccer clubs in Serie A, and the US Olympic team are three examples of what helps strengthen their foothold...