Nike Favorability Plunges After Colin Kaepernick Ad Fiasco

Brand favorability for Nike sportswear has plunged after it signed national anthem protester Colin Kaepernick to its new “Just Do It” campaign.

Brand favorability for Nike sportswear has plunged after it signed national anthem protester Colin Kaepernick to be the face of its new “Just Do It” campaign.

A poll from Morning Consult shows the bad news for Nike.

Breitbart Sports reports:

According to the poll via Axios, Nike’s numbers “dropped 34 points from a net +69 favorable impression (76% favorable, 7% unfavorable) among consumers to a net +35 favorable impression (60% favorable, 24% unfavorable).”

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This is devastating news for Nike showing that, at least in this first week of its Kaepernick ad campaign, the public is not at all going for the whole idea.

Axios noted:

While Nike could face negative purchasing consideration as a result of the campaign, experts argue the sports goods giant likely calculated these risks and deemed that it wouldn’t impact its bottom line significantly, despite any short-term pushback.

  • According to the poll, before Nike announced Kaepernick as the face of its ad campaign, only 2% of Americans reported hearing something negative about Nike recently. That number increased to 33% after the announcement.
  • The poll also found that purchasing intent was down after the announcement.
  • Earlier Morning Consult polling shows that brands have relatively little upside in wading into issues that involve President Trump.

But there was one other important finding.

Breitbart News also reported that TMZ found a Nike insider who insisted that the company feels that hiring Kaepernick will be a good move because its largely black customer base will love Nike for hiring Colin.

But the poll found the opposite, at least this early in the campaign. According to the poll, favorability among blacks was at 82 percent before the Kaepernick campaign but it dropped to 74 percent afterward.

Also, among blacks who said they intended to buy Nike products in the near future the numbers fell from 64 percent to 61 percent.

So, even among blacks Nike’s numbers fell. This runs contrary to what the company thought would happen when it hired anti-American protester Colin Kaepernick for its 30th anniversary “Just Do It” campaign.

Will it be a wake-up call?

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by

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