What can B2B marketers learn from Nike and the Cavs?

basketball
As an Ohio native with friends and family spread across the state, you best believe that my social media feeds were overflowing with celebration when the Cleveland Cavaliers became NBA champs for the first time in their 46-year history this past weekend.

And then the very next day, social media was flooded with social shares of Nike’s “Worth the Wait” commercial, featuring in-awe Cavs fans in the final game moments.

I’ll admit that I didn’t really care about the Cavs’ win (sorry, LeBron!), but as a marketer, I couldn’t help but be impressed with the investment and risk that Nike took (and undoubtedly the last-minute editing led by their agency, Wieden+Kennedy Portland) to have that ad ready to go.

So, why am I writing about this on a B2B marketing blog? While it’s unlikely we’re advertising to the masses with messaging relevant to the country’s biggest events, I do think there’s a thing or two we can learn from Nike’s latest spot.

  1. Forward-thinking can make all the difference. What events, awards or milestones are upcoming for you or your customers that you can incorporate into your marketing?
  2. Sometimes the risk pays off. What if the Cavs didn’t win? But what if they did? Always doing what’s safe and expected may get lost. What makes you uncomfortable to try but would make a huge difference if it worked?
  3. Embrace the emotion. Even in B2B, we’re all still people, with real emotions. How can you authentically relate to the trials and triumphs of your customers in a way that makes them feel connected to your brand?

Hats off to Nike and Wieden+Kennedy Portland. Judging by my news feed, Cleveland approves.

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