Psychology of Business - Nike She Runs Essay examples

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A Psychological Perspective
Synopsis Exam

Exam Question: “Today business and organizations have to function within a globalized, diverse, highly competitive and rapidly changing market. This calls for new approaches, strategies, organizations and understandings. Based on a relevant case/problem, account for and discuss how a psychological perspective can qualify those.”

Hand in date: 8th May 2014
Julie Ingemann Jensen
3 Pages
Copenhagen Business School 2014

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Nike currently stands as a dominant leader in the global athletic retail industry. Particularly amongst females Nike is seen as a popular choice for apparel yet has had trouble solidifying itself as a top choice for footwear, with competitor ASICS seen as the preferred running shoe choice. Nike recognised this market opportunity to increase shoe sales by targeting the female runners who were not previously reached out to. They did this through the Nike She Runs campaign, which began in 2012. The campaign involved a series of women only races that kicked off in Sydney, Australia, as well as an extensive social media and marketing campaigns that promoted discussion and a sense of community among female runners. It has now expanded to reach global recognition across 11 countries and continues to thrive amongst women today. The campaign has received several awards as well as significant qualitative and quantitative benefits. The main objective was to enhance females’ perception of Nike and for them to associate the brand with high quality footwear and female empowerment.
As the market for female athletic wear continues to grow, Nike have to be innovative and constantly adapt to the changing market environment. Therefore, this paper will analyse how Nike is able to remain competitive in a dynamic and highly competitive industry. Ultimately, it will examine what makes the Nike She Runs campaign successful amongst women in the athletic retail industry using a psychological perspective.

There are two major motives beyond drive-reduction; they are the motive to belong and the motive to achieve. The She Runs campaign fulfilled the motive to belong by providing women with emotional and tangible support, creating a community of 54,762 runners (an increase of 83% from the previously set KPI benchmarks (Marketing Mag, 2013)). It also fulfilled the motive to achieve with the runners feeling a sense of accomplishment after finishing the race. This accomplishment increased their self-efficacy, allowing them to feel more confident in their ability to achieve. In fact, 90% of runners surveyed via Facebook intend to run the race again the following year (Marketing Mag, 2013).
Market research conducted by Nike discovered that a key insight into the behaviour of women running is the fear of running at night. The campaign allowed for participants to satisfy certain needs such as security and acceptance by running in the dark as a group as opposed to alone. The campaign allowed for participants to achieve these basic needs, therefore allowing them to strive for higher needs such as achieving personal dreams and aspirations. This is in line with Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, as if ones basic needs are met, they are then able to move higher up the pyramid and achieve a greater sense of fulfilment.

Using the trait approach Nike She Runs takes into account each females thoughts, feelings and behaviours, including low and high sensation seeking, introverts and extroverts, beginners and experts. Online marketing efforts allow for personalisation and customisation of profiles where each female can identify with the brand on a personal level (AdNewsAus, 2013).
The humanistic approach argues that when we compare our actual self with our ideal self we become motivated to