Nike's History and Marketing Essay

2026 Words 9 Pages
Nike's History and Marketing


Every box of Nike shoes states, “engineered and built to the exact specifications for championship athletes around the world.” Nike has become the measuring stick in the world of merchandising and endorsing. Top athletes around the world are often seen with a famous Nike swoosh on their shoes. It is not uncommon to see some form of Nike product everywhere you look. Nike “head honcho” Phil Knight wants to keep it that way, too.

In the spring of 1972, Phil Knight, a graduate of the University of Oregon, introduced the city of Beaverton, Oregon to the world of Nike. Phil decided that by selling shoes out of the trunk of his own car he would impact the world forever. Phil was right. First year sales for
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By making the first pair of Air Jordan’s red, white, and black, Knight and Jordan broke a NBA rule. The NBA rule stated that NBA basketball players must wear some form of white shoes, no matter what company was on them. When the basketball world saw the outrageous red and black shoes, they were shell-shocked. At the same time there was this feeling deep inside of the basketball community that made them feel like those shoes would definitely fit their personality. Once again shoes flew off the shelves and everything that Phil Knight had dreamed of was coming true. The only problem that did occur for Phil Knight was he had to pay off the NBA which fined Michael Jordan $1,000 for every game he wore the shoes.

In the late 1980’s Nike became one of the top merchandisers in the world. Nike’s success rose from $870 million to almost $4 billion in one year (History). Nike signed athlete after athlete, from Olympic gold medallists to top performers in the sports fields. Nike dramatized select athletes in “music video” commercials. One of Nike’s most famous commercials was put to the music of John Lennon’s classic hit “Imagine.” This was a hit for not only youngsters, but also adults alike. The adults could relate to the lyrical content in the song, while the younger ones just sat there in amazement.

Nike decided that Andre Agassi would be a good investment for them in the late 1980’s. Agassi caused quite a stir because of his unusual…