Nike calls for better consumer understanding

Stefan Olander, global director of brand connections at Nike, has called on brands and agencies to better understand the consumer journey in order to be relevant and build genuine relationships with customers, reports Danielle Longfrom Cannes.


Speaking at the international advertising festival Cannes Lions 2009, Olander criticised “advertising for the sake of advertising” and urged the industry to understand the lives of consumers and how brands can fit into this to provide services and utilities, such as Nike+.

Olander said, “For Nike, we start by looking at how we can make the products better but that is just one part, and everything else that surrounds the consumer’s relationship with the product should be a source for providing understanding.”

“We have been working with Google to tap into this and the nature of open source to take existing things and mash them together, and this is where it becomes increasingly powerful and enriches what people do. It also can become a new source of revenue.”

“Digital is such an enormous enabler but you have to do more than the expectation. If you don’t have a clear understanding of the consumer journey and if you don’t understand how your brand fits into the consumer’s life then advertising can be annoying at its best or irrelevant. However, if it does fit it can become the starting point of a relationship.”

Olander said Nike had undertaken research which found that users would pay money for anything that could make them feel better.

This story first appeared on

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