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May 8, 2024
(Updated on
Nov 2, 2023

What Brands Can Learn From Adidas's Marketing Strategy

adidas logo
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Adidas is a well-known brand for sports equipment and apparel that originated in Germany. It started out as a small shoe company. Adolf Dassler founded Adidas with a clear vision in mind: to primarily sell soccer products. The company has experienced remarkable evolution and growth over the years. As of June 30, 2022, Adidas has a market capitalization of over 21 billion euros and has achieved impressive sales figures totaling a staggering $24.559 billion. It's interesting to mention that the story of Adidas is connected to a fascinating period in the history of sports business. This era was defined by the split between the Dassler brothers, which ultimately resulted in Rudolf Dassler founding Puma. In addition, Adidas made a big move in 2005 by acquiring Reebok. This helped them expand their influence, and they cleverly repositioned the brand to fit perfectly with Adidas' main principles. By making this strategic move, Adidas not only increased its market presence but also established itself as a major player in the sports and athletic wear industries.

Product and Innovation

Since it first started, Adidas has always been known for leading the way in athletic footwear. They've made a name for themselves by introducing game-changing innovations like screw-in studs for football boots. Adidas became a leading brand in the sports equipment industry thanks to these innovations, which established a benchmark for high-performance gear. Over time, Adidas expanded its range of products to include more than just shoes. They now offer a variety of items, such as sportswear, equipment, lifestyle products, and fashionable clothing. Adidas' long-lasting success can be attributed to its strong dedication to constantly innovating its products. The brand always strives to go beyond what's expected in terms of design and functionality. They work with talented designers and artists to create one-of-a-kind collections that appeal to people who want both style and performance in their athletic and everyday wear. Adidas' unwavering commitment to innovation has solidified its position as a worldwide frontrunner in the realms of sports and fashion.

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Marketing Strategy

adidas soccer shoes
Image Credit: adidas-group.com

Adidas has developed a marketing strategy that focuses on important elements such as quality, innovation, diversification, and strong advertising campaigns. By following this approach, the brand makes sure that it always provides high-quality products to its customers, which helps to build trust and loyalty towards the brand. Adidas appeals to a wide range of people. They have products for athletes who want to perform at their best, young people between the ages of 13 and 30 who are interested in sports culture, and fitness enthusiasts who value both style and functionality in their workout clothes. One thing that stands out about Adidas' strategy is their strong emphasis on product design and technology. They are known for their innovative approaches, like their game-changing Boost cushioning technology. 

The brand has fully embraced the digital age by using digital marketing, e-commerce platforms, and social media to make their brand more visible and engaging. In addition, Adidas works on building customer loyalty by offering programs like the "Creators Club" loyalty initiative. This program provides special benefits and rewards to its loyal customers. Adidas focuses on key cities like Paris, Tokyo, and New York to solidify its impact on fashion trends. By doing so, the brand can actively shape and inspire style innovations in these culturally influential places. Adidas takes a holistic approach that goes beyond just selling products. They create memorable advertising campaigns that help them build real connections with their customers. In addition, the company uses a limited supply strategy for certain popular products. This strategy helps to create more demand and increase the profit margins for those products. Adidas additionally has cleverly embraced meme marketing, creating their own versions of popular memes, especially in the football (soccer) industry. This helps them connect with their fans and create a sense of relatability and engagement.

Collaborations with Celebrities

kanye yeezy


Adidas has been really smart about teaming up with famous celebrities, and one of their biggest successes has been their collaboration with Kanye West. When celebrities team up with brands, it creates a lot of excitement and can lead to a boost in sales. Celebrities have a strong following and a significant impact on culture, making them great brand ambassadors for Adidas. They help boost the company's reputation and enhance its street credibility. One of the most well-known collaborations is the Adidas Yeezy Boost series, which came about through the partnership between Adidas and the famous rapper Kanye West. The partnership between Adidas and the world of high fashion not only helped Adidas expand its influence, but it also presented a major challenge to Nike's stronghold in the premium sneaker market. Adidas is really making a name for itself by embracing influencer marketing and teaming up with big names like Kanye West and Pharrell Williams. They're showing that they're a brand that knows how to blend sports and style, and people all over the world are really connecting with that.

Leverage Athlete Endorsements

Adidas also places great importance on partnerships with professional athletes in the world of sports marketing. The brand always brings in big-name NBA players like Josh Smith, Andrew Wiggins, Eric Gordon, Brandon Knight, and Jeremy Lin to help promote their products. When athletes endorse sneakers and apparel, it not only makes them more popular among their fans but also makes them more appealing to consumers who want high-performance sportswear. Adidas is really expanding its influence by sponsoring sports events and athletes. They have made a big impact by partnering with organizations like the NBA and FIFA, as well as famous sports stars like Lionel Messi and Naomi Osaka. By strategically aligning with top-tier athletes, Adidas ensures that it remains a strong presence in the competitive sports market.

messi x adidas
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Adidas had a significant role in the London 2012 Olympic Games, which was one of their notable ventures in sports sponsorship. At this event, Adidas achieved something truly remarkable by obtaining a wide range of sportswear rights. This is a significant moment in Olympic history. Adidas had an incredible opportunity to showcase their sportswear as the Official Sportswear Partner of the London Games. They were also the exclusive licensee for all the branded and event-branded clothing. This gave Adidas a chance to gain unprecedented global exposure and recognition. This move not only showed that the brand is dedicated to being excellent in sports, but it also solidified its reputation as a reliable partner on the biggest sporting stages in the world. In addition, Adidas has smartly entered the realm of digital marketing by teaming up with YouTube creators who really know the platform and its viewers. Adidas teamed up with KICKTV, a popular soccer channel on YouTube, to create interesting content that connected with viewers and helped expand its online presence.

Top Marketing Campaigns:

Impossible Is Nothing

Image Credit: adidas-group.com

In 2004, Adidas embraced the famous slogan "Impossible Is Nothing," showing their dedication to breaking down barriers and pushing boundaries in the realm of sports. Over the past few years, this amazing campaign has grown to focus on female athletes, promoting equality and inclusivity in the world of sports. Adidas is shining a spotlight on women who defy norms and redefine what it means to be excellent. This shows their commitment to breaking gender barriers and encourages a new generation of athletes to aim for greatness, regardless of their gender.

Take the Deal, Dare to Create

Adidas launched the "Take the Deal, Dare to Create" campaign in 2019, which aimed to inspire and celebrate creativity and individuality. The campaign highlights athletes from different backgrounds who courageously defy expectations and create their own distinctive styles. Adidas believes that each person has the ability to shape their own future and leave a lasting impact on the world. This is what "Take the Deal, Dare to Create" represents. Adidas inspires athletes and enthusiasts to think outside the box and be true to themselves, fostering innovation and self-expression.

When Football Is Everything, Impossible Is Nothing

Adidas has recently given a fresh twist to its timeless motto, coinciding with the excitement surrounding the FIFA World Cup 2022. The campaign, "When Football Is Everything, Impossible Is Nothing," celebrates the deep sense of togetherness and fond memories that football evokes in people all over the world. It represents a strong symbol of unity and warmth, highlighting the inclusive nature of the beautiful game. In this campaign, Adidas beautifully captures the true spirit of sports that goes beyond borders and languages. It creates a strong sense of unity and belonging among fans all around the world.

Promotion and Advertising Strategy

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Adidas has a comprehensive branding strategy that uses various media and communication channels to spread its brand message in all directions. Their approach covers a wide range of channels, including traditional mediums like television and print, the vast world of the internet, eye-catching billboards, and active participation on social media platforms. Adidas has built a strong bond with its audience through its millions of followers on digital platforms. This helps create brand loyalty and encourages open conversations.

The brand is really good at promoting itself by sponsoring famous athletes and important sports events. This helps a lot in making more people know about the brand all around the world. Adidas has a long and impressive history of creating unforgettable advertising campaigns that perfectly match their famous tagline, "Impossible is nothing." These campaigns have the power to captivate audiences and motivate them to challenge boundaries and surpass their limitations. Adidas's promotion and advertising strategy show their strong dedication to keeping their loyal customers and attracting new fans to the world of sports and style.

Product Portfolio

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Adidas takes pride in offering a wide range of products that are suitable for athletes, fitness enthusiasts, and people who are into fashion. They have a wide variety of products, ranging from the latest athletic shoes to fashionable clothing like t-shirts, hoodies, shorts, and even sports equipment. Adidas not only focuses on innovation but also places a strong emphasis on sustainability. Adidas is working together with organizations like Parley for the Ocean to create environmentally friendly and sustainable products. They are leading the way in meeting the increasing demand for eco-friendly options in the market.


Adidas's high prices are based on the quality and innovation of its goods. For new releases, the company often starts with higher prices and then lowers them over time to reach a wider audience while keeping the value of the brand.


Adidas has a wide-ranging marketing plan that includes standard forms of advertising like billboards, TV, newspapers, and magazines. Also, the brand is very involved in digital marketing and social media campaigns, showing that it is ready for the digital age. Along with strategic sponsorships of sports teams and individual players, influencer marketing is a key way for a business to reach its target audience. This multifaceted method makes sure that Adidas has a strong presence on many different platforms and among many different kinds of people.

Distribution Strategy

Adidas has a strong footprint around the world thanks to a network of more than 500 independent factories in 55 countries. The brand's goods are sold to customers through a variety of channels, such as Adidas-owned stores, e-commerce platforms, and partnerships with other stores. With this broad distribution strategy, Adidas can reach a wide range of customers and make sure that its goods are available and easy to get all over the world.

Embrace Digitalization

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Under the strategy banner "Creating the New," Adidas has made a big commitment to digitalization. The company doesn't just see itself as a clothing maker; it also sees itself as a digital entity that can change with how people want to interact with brands. Adidas has put a lot of money into its social media marketing campaigns and other digital advertising efforts in reaction to the digital age. This shows that Adidas knows that having a strong internet presence is the most important part of modern marketing strategies.

Competition with Nike

Adidas and Nike are strong competitors in the sports retail business, which is very competitive. Both brands have loyal customers and a wide range of products that meet a wide range of athletic and lifestyle needs. Even though Adidas and Nike compete in the same market, their marketing strategies are different. This is because they have different approaches to their target groups, product focuses, and countries of origin. This difference leads to constant competition between the two brands, which forces them to always come up with new ideas and change in order to win the market.

nike vs adidas
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Adidas has established itself as a major player in the global sports retail market through a mix of new products, smart marketing campaigns, and a willingness to change as consumer tastes change. With a long history of high-profile collaborations and endorsements from athletes, the brand continues to appeal to a wide range of people, from athletes and exercise fans to people who set fashion trends. Adidas stays a dynamic force in the world of sportswear and equipment by embracing digitalization and expanding into emerging markets and lower-tier cities. It is ready to meet the challenges and possibilities of the future with creativity and determination.

Updated on November 2nd, 2023

The Adidas x Prada partnership debuted in May 2023 as a groundbreaking mix of athletic wear and high fashion, bringing together two storied labels lauded for their commitment to design and innovation. This outstanding collaboration successfully united Prada's history of high-end workmanship with Adidas' deep roots in athletics, resulting in a line that expertly combined functionality and style. The "Adidas Football for Prada" line stood out for its sophisticated minimalism and painstaking attention to detail. The choice of high-quality materials and a muted colour scheme gave the teamwork an aura of understated elegance that has stood the test of time. The Adidas x Prada collaboration, which made waves in the fashion industry and blurred the lines between sportswear and high fashion, won over customers who cared about both quality and style. The exceptional and ground-breaking range of goods that resulted from this relationship, which spanned multiple industries, reflected the transformative power of collaboration.

Credit: Adidas

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