Overview of the Industry

There is an intense competition that businesses faced in Sports industry. The companies and marketers have to be stylish and functional at the same time to remain competitive. Within this industry, Adidas and Nike are two prominent names across the world countries. Adidas and Nike are the most significant brand names in the minds of customers.

Comparison of Markets

Nike majorly deals in industries of Children and Women shoes, Running, Cross-training, and Basketball. On the other hand, Adidas primarily deals in Athletics, Tennis, and Soccer.

Comparison of Strategies

Adidas and Nike operate and use similar marketing strategies while different approaches of implementation. Both organizations focus greatly on technology, as well as make efforts to innovate and produce new products.   

1. Focus of Strategies

Nike concentrates on the US market; on the other hand, Adidas concentrates on the market of Europe.

2. Production Strategies

Nike does not own production plants as the company merely advertises, distributes and designs their goods and thus, the company outsources to severe Asian countries, such as Korea and Taiwan that outsources their production plants in Vietnam, Indonesia, and China. On the contrary, Adidas has production plant in Germany, and in recent time, has adopted the outsourcing approach of Nike by outsourcing to countries in Asia.

3. Marketing Strategies

Adidas and Nike pursue a strategy of premium pricing that refers to an approach where businesses charge higher price for their goods. Nike and Adidas faced an intense competition.
For example, during the World Cup 2010:

  • “Write the future” campaign was launched by Nike, which was a 3-minutes advertisement in which celebrities were featured, and received overwhelming response from customers on YouTube.
  • On the other hand, Adidas answered back with 2-minutes video that featured stars such as Daft Punk and Snoop Dogg into a prominent shot from the Star Wars movie.
  • Nine teams sponsored by Nike while twelve teams sponsored by Adidas.

Key Differences in Marketing Strategies

  • Nike has a domestic market focus, while Adidas has an international market focus.
  • To gain the global recognition, Nike shifted focus to soccer. Adidas governs the global market, mainly the soccer that is deemed the “world sports.”
  • Nike began sportsperson sponsorship frenzy, and to create an appeal among bored consumers have created new look shoes. Adidas sponsored professional athletic teams and athletes as a reaction to marketing techniques of Nike.
  • Nike offers customization to gain competitive advantage; in contrast, Adidas tries to cut production costs and time to be more successful.
  • Nike employs abroad production factories to reduce costs of production. Adidas offers low salary to reduce costs of production.
  • Nike improved its e-sites with custom options of footwear; whereas, Adidas increases its’ advertising and marketing budgets.
  • Nike has led the sportswear in marketing and advertising strategies; however, Adidas has presently attempted to expand its market to sports apparel and equipment. 


To be concise, Adidas and Nike have different marketing strategies in how both companies interactive with consumers online. The above discussion made it apparent that a strategy of Nike revolves around creating a unique and distinct identity for each sport is effective and smart. However, both Adidas and Nike have a significant digital presence and impressive viral marketing strategies.