Asics launches marketing push to show brand is not just for runners

Asics is launching its biggest marketing campaign to extend what it claims is its “leadership in running” to tennis and rugby alongside other niche sports.

AsicsMuscleSupport-Campaign-2014_460
Asics launches marketing push to show the brand is not just for runners.

The Japanese sportswear maker is increasing its pan-European media spend by 20 per cent year-on-year to support the cross-category charge that will see it focus on promoting its apparel range. Asics, which is known for its running footwear, says there is a “huge opportunity to translate the equity it has built up around marathon training to other sports, particularly those niche to certain markets.

Multi-channel promotions will pitch the brand’s “Muscle Support” collection – designed to improve the running posture of the wearer – ahead of other ranges being introduced later in the year. Activity will market how the range enhances the performance in tennis and rugby with the brand preparing its first non-running TV campaign in Europe for the former later this year.

Asics, which is the number three tennis footwear manufacturer behind Nike and Adidas according to consumer insights specialist NPD Group, will use its recently announced tie-ups with Wimbledon doubles champion Jonny Marray and Canadian top 40 player Vasek Pospislil to strengthen its ties to the sport alongside its sponsorship of the World Tennis Classic tournament. It is also planning a campaign featuring both the Australian and South African national rugby union teams in the build up to next year’s World Cup.

Max Keen, marketing manager for Asics Europe, says it wants apparel to become the brand’s biggest business after running. Asics’ popularity among runners has come under threat over the last two years as Nike and Adidas throw more marketing muscle behind the fast-growing category.

Keen adds: “Our strategy is about being number one in running. That won’t change but there’s a natural affinity to running and other sports. Three out of four people who buy Asics [products] use it for sport. That’s almost double the rate of the market, which is more like four out of 10 because people use them for leisure also.”

The strategy builds on last year’s “Journey of Improvement” campaign, which Asics claims was its most successful to date based on brand metrics such as awareness and sentiment.

Hide Comments2 Show Comments
Comments
Trackbacks
  • […] Asics’ omnichannel bid comes as Nike and Adidas ramp up efforts to win over runners, a category they both believe has the potential to be more lucrative with women, and boost their standing in the eyes of female customers. Asics is trying to counter their advances by stretching its positioning to tennis and rugby in order to show the brand is not just fo… […]

  • […] Asics’ omnichannel bid comes as Nike and Adidas ramp up efforts to win over runners, a category they both believe has the potential to be more lucrative with women, and boost their standing in the eyes of female customers. Asics is trying to counter their advances by stretching its positioning to tennis and rugby in order to show the brand is not just fo… […]

Latest from Marketing Week

NOT REGISTERED? IT'S FREE, QUICK AND EASY!

Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now

THE BEST CONTENT

Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.

THE BIGGEST ISSUES

From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.

PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email customerservices@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here