Brands should Learn from Nike’s Augmented Reality Marketing Strategy…

Jeffrey Boopathy
7 min readApr 11, 2023

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Lace up your sneakers and prepare to step into the future of shopping with Nike’s innovative use of augmented reality. As one of the world’s leading athletic brands, Nike is no stranger to pushing boundaries and embracing new technologies. And with their latest foray into the world of AR, Nike is revolutionizing the way we shop for our favourite sports gear.

From virtual try-ons to interactive in-store displays, the possibilities are endless. So, put on your virtual reality headset and join us as we explore how Nike uses AR to elevate the customer experience.

With online shopping becoming more prevalent, it’s become common for shoppers to purchase multiple pairs of shoes in different sizes and return the ones that don’t fit. This is because shoe sizes can vary depending on the brand and style, and many people may not even know their true shoe size or have different-sized feet.

Nike’s “Nike Fit” function employs augmented reality to allow customers to visually try on shoes. This tool scans a customer’s foot with a smartphone camera and generates a 3D model, then recommends the proper shoe size and style. When the user is in position, the app detects and measures their feet, delivering a precise size recommendation.

This tool can make online shoe buying less tedious and boost the likelihood of finding the perfect fit on the first try. Nike’s augmented reality experience is a straightforward function offered in their mobile app. To measure your feet, go to a product page and click the “measure your feet” link next to the size selection menu. The app will prompt you to stand beside a wall and point your phone’s camera at your feet.

The feature uses AR circles to level your phone and begins scanning your feet once it recognizes your physical environment. Within a minute, the feature will provide you with your ideal shoe size for Nike footwear. The process is quick and convenient, allowing for a seamless and accurate measurement experience.

According to Nike, this technology has reduced online returns by 28%, which has saved the company millions of dollars. Additionally, Nike Fit has helped to improve customer satisfaction, as customers are now more likely to receive shoes that fit correctly the first time they order them.

After that, there is another way Nike used AR: Nike By You, an augmented reality feature that allows customers to customize their sneakers using a smartphone app. Customers can select the colours, materials, and designs they want for their shoes and see a 3D representation of the finished product using augmented reality. This feature has been very popular with customers, with over 2 million unique designs created in the first year of its launch.

The Nike By You feature offers various customization options, including colour, materials, and graphic patterns. Customers can choose from various base shoe models, such as the Air Max 90, Air Force 1, and React Infinity Run. The app allows customers to see a detailed 3D rendering of their custom shoe, with the ability to zoom in and view it from different angles. Additionally, customers can save and share their designs with others.

One example of the success of Nike By You is the “Doernbecher Freestyle” collection, which is an annual collaboration between Nike and the Doernbecher Children’s Hospital in Portland, Oregon. Children with serious illnesses are invited to design their own Nike shoes, with the proceeds from selling them to the hospital.

The Nike By You feature allows these children to create unique, personalized shoes representing their stories and personalities. These shoes have become highly sought-after collector’s items, with a few pairs selling for thousands of dollars on the resale market.

Nike By You has also successfully attracted younger customers to the brand. The feature allows customers to create unique and personalized products that reflect their styles and preferences, particularly appealing to younger customers who value self-expression and individuality.

Nike By You has helped to increase customer engagement and satisfaction, as well as revenue for the company. According to Nike, the revenue from customized products has increased by 30% since the launch of Nike By You.

Nike’s SNKRS app, which includes an AR-powered game that lets customers unlock exclusive trainers by completing challenges and collecting virtual goods, is another popular augmented reality deployment. This tool gives customers a fun and engaging way to connect with Nike items, increasing their brand loyalty.

Nike’s SNKRS app has been a big hit, with more than 60% of customers returning within a week of their first visit. The app features a variety of exclusive trainers that are hard to come by elsewhere, such as limited-edition collaborations with designers and athletes. The app also provides customers detailed information on each sneaker, including release dates, pricing, and product details.

One successful example of the success of the SNKRS app is the release of the Off-White x Air Jordan 5 sneakers, which sold out within minutes of their release on the app. The app has also created buzz and anticipation around upcoming sneaker releases, with customers eagerly waiting for new drops and sharing information and images on social media.

Another example of Nike’s use of augmented reality is its Nike Live stores, which offer a personalized shopping experience using the latest in-store technology. These stores are designed to cater to the needs and preferences of local customers, with products curated based on data and insights from the surrounding community.

This in-store experience using augmented reality allows customers to explore products and learn about their features interactively and engagingly. Using the Nike app, customers can scan QR codes on product displays to access additional information, such as product details, reviews, and videos. This feature has helped to increase customer engagement and satisfaction in Nike stores.

The Nike by Melrose store in Los Angeles is an example of the popularity of Nike Live stores. This store curates products that are popular in the surrounding community using local data and insights, and it offers exclusive products and services that are exclusively available at that location. The store also employs augmented reality technology to deliver personalized product recommendations and engaging customer experiences.

Nike Live shops have improved consumer involvement and satisfaction while driving brand sales. Nike Live store sales are growing faster than regular store sales, and customers who buy at Nike Live stores have higher satisfaction ratings than those who shop at traditional stores.
Nike is celebrating its 50th anniversary in style with a new augmented reality experience at its retail stores worldwide.

Scanning a QR code with their smartphone lets visitors unlock a virtual box containing 11 captivating stories and 17 3D-scanned assets from Nike’s archives. You don’t need an app to enjoy this mind-blowing experience, just your smartphone camera!

This innovative AR feature was developed by Nike’s Global Brand Experience team in partnership with the creative tech geniuses at BUCK, using cutting-edge WebAR and SLAM technology. So, step into the future of retail with Nike’s awe-inspiring AR experience and celebrate 50 years of iconic style and innovation!

Benefits of Using Augmented Reality

Increased Customer Engagement

Nike can now improve customer connection by creating immersive experiences that are not achievable with traditional marketing approaches thanks to AR technology. Nike’s augmented reality capabilities have enabled customers to interact with items and create personalized experiences, increasing their connection with the brand.

Sales have increased

Nike’s use of augmented reality technology has enhanced sales by offering customers a more immersive experience. The Nike SNKRS function has made Nike trainers more desirable, while the Nike Fit feature has made it easier for customers to purchase shoes online, which was previously difficult owing to sizing concerns. These features have increased the company’s sales and revenue.

Improved Customer Satisfaction

Nike has improved customer happiness by creating personalized experiences that cater to the specific demands of each consumer. Nike’s augmented reality capabilities, such as Nike By You and Nike Live, have enabled customers to create personalized designs and receive personalized recommendations, increasing their brand pleasure.

An advantage in the marketplace

Nike’s use of augmented reality technology has provided the company with a competitive advantage in the athletic footwear and apparel market. Nike has been able to create new experiences that traditional marketing approaches cannot provide, which has helped the brand to stand out from its competition.

Conclusion

Nike’s use of augmented reality has revolutionized the way we interact with their products, providing a unique and immersive experience for customers. From virtual try-ons to interactive in-store displays, Nike has leveraged the power of AR to enhance the shopping experience and stay at the forefront of innovation in the industry.

As technology continues to advance, it will be exciting to see how Nike and other companies will continue to push the boundaries of what is possible with augmented reality. So next time you’re in the market for a new pair of sneakers, consider trying them on in a whole new way with Nike’s augmented reality experiences.

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Jeffrey Boopathy

🎙Building my first Saas product | 5+ years in podcasting | Let's connect on LinkedIn -> https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeffreyboopathy/