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Guest Mores

Nike: Why I Believe a Boycott May Work

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Guest Mores

There are several reasons why boycotts don't really work.

  • Lack of "real" competition for a product that people like too much.
  • People shop because of prices vs. quality.
  • Not enough people really believe in it.
  • The boycott will oftentimes, not effect the people who are actually doing the bad things.

Analysis:

  • Nike has PLENTY of competition.  There are PLENTY of choices for makes and models.
  • Nike doesn't really make any better shoes than most major brands.  And they are often WAY overpriced for the quality.
  • About 1/3 to 1/2 of the country are very upset at Nike.
  • There is no question that the people making such bad decisions will be harmed by a nationwide boycott.

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Another drawback is the "any press is free advertising" phenomenon, where we find name recognition spreading and sales going up, as more and more people who never would have bought a high-priced sneaker in the first place, step up and take sides.   The Cola Wars of the '80's is a case in point, as an entire country who didn't really care, suddenly found themselves choosing between Coke and Pepsi.   The Passion of the Christ movie was probably got 400-600% more moviegoers interested than if nobody had said anything.

Don't get me wrong, I want the people in Nike to hurt, and hurt bad over this.  I hope a boycott would work, and I'm happy to support one in my limited way, being someone who gets all his shoes from mail order or goodwill.

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Nike is begging for a boycott. If the right boycotts Nike, it'll just draw more attention to them and oddly, it'll help their sales in the long run because the left will flock to them even more so. Like @NeuroTypical said, the best thing to happen to the Passion of the Christ was a boycott.  

I go a step further too. With rare exceptions (like the civil rights boycotts) many boycotts are done just so that you (generic!) can show your moral purity and outrage. It makes us feel better about ourselves because we think we're standing up for injustice/morality/freedom when in reality we aren't doing much. 

Edited by MormonGator

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I am a big fan of people making choices on what to buy or support for whatever reasons float their boat.  And I am generally supportive of being able to make informed choices.

With that being said I am not a fan of boycotts...  To me boycotts cross from being informational (which I like) to trying to tell me how I should Think, Feel and Act... and trying to get me to engage in a PR stunt (which as noted usually back fires). 

Give me the information, then leave me to vote with my wallet.  It will affect the business (or not) based how their customers choose to respond to their actions.

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53 minutes ago, MormonGator said:

Nike is begging for a boycott. If the right boycotts Nike, it'll just draw more attention to them and oddly, it'll help their sales in the long run because the left will flock to them even more so. Like @NeuroTypical said, the best thing to happen to the Passion of the Christ was a boycott.  

I go a step further too. With rare exceptions (like the civil rights boycotts) many boycotts are done just so that you (generic!) can show your moral purity and outrage. It makes us feel better about ourselves because we think we're standing up for injustice/morality/freedom when in reality we aren't doing much. 

An excellent point and example. The Civil Rights boycott worked because of a very specific advantage the boycotters had in that situation, that won't apply to Nike. In the case of the Montgomery bus boycott, African Americans made up around 80 percent of the bus companies consumers, and were highly organized. Thus when almost all of them joined in the boycott, the bus company lost a significant amount of their profits, and was forced to change.

There is no mass organziation of all people opposed to Nike. Sure they will lose conservative customers, but then they gain liberal customers who balance out any loss felt by the company. Unless and untill you can get a significant portion of the population to sign up for a boycott, like in Montgomery, all you are doing by calling for one is driving people into a Nike store. See how successful the liberal boycott of Chick Fil A was as a comparative example.

Edited by Midwest LDS

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Guest Mores
36 minutes ago, MormonGator said:

Nike is begging for a boycott. If the right boycotts Nike, it'll just draw more attention to them and oddly, it'll help their sales in the long run because the left will flock to them even more so. Like @NeuroTypical said, the best thing to happen to the Passion of the Christ was a boycott.  

I go a step further too. With rare exceptions (like the civil rights boycotts) many boycotts are done just so that you (generic!) can show your moral purity and outrage. It makes us feel better about ourselves because we think we're standing up for injustice/morality/freedom when in reality we aren't doing much. 

True, the bussing thing was certainly an exception due to the customer demographics and unity.  The unity was one of my criteria.  Demographics are a given because a one person boycott doesn't really do anything.

Yes, the left may support Nike somewhat.  But how much?  Remember that the left is all about putting down big business.  What will be their rally cry to support a big business?  And the left is also about getting "other" people to pay for things.  But pay for things themselves?  Bah!!!

With both the Passion of the Christ and Chik-fil-a (as @Midwest LDS mentioned) the "counter-boycott" (for lack of a better word right now) was successful because the product was a great (some say BETTER) choice than alternatives at the time.

Look at the crap Hollywood puts out.  So many Christians wanted a Christ based movie like Passion.  It was an awesome film.  It overpowered so many other films of the same year.  Only a few films that year came close.  But they were released months later -- not competition.

Chik-fil-a MAKES GREAT SANDWICHES.  A LOT of people want some fast food that isn't hamburgers or hot dogs.  It's a great product.  So, all that needed to be done was to get the word out.  Even a black football player was noted for saying that he didn't care if they supported slavery.  The sandwiches were just too good to give up.

Everyone already knows about Nike.  So, how does "getting the word out" help?  What about Nike's quality is going to get people to buy their more expensive product over others?

The economics were there for Passion and for Chik-fil-A (better product, less name recognition to nearly ubiquitous recognition, popularity).  The same factors simply aren't there for Nike.

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22 minutes ago, Mores said:

Chik-fil-a MAKES GREAT SANDWICHES. 

And Nike makes great shoes. Up until the Kapernick drama, many of us bought them. Not because we cared about their politics, we cared about our wallets. Like it or not, a TON of people are still going to buy their shoes. Americans love politics, but they love their money more. 

 

23 minutes ago, Mores said:

Yes, the left may support Nike somewhat.  But how much? 

The left supports Nike now, but for awhile remember the left hated them because of slave labor. Oddly, the left doesn't care about that now. Many on the left only care about the latest hip trend. That's why they don't care about womens/gay rights now, they only care about transgender rights now. In a decade when transgenderism isn't hip anymore, they'll forget about that and move on to the next one. 

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1 minute ago, MormonGator said:

And Nike makes great shoes. Up until the Kapernick drama, many of us bought them. Not because we cared about their politics, we cared about our wallets. Like it or not, a TON of people are still going to buy their shoes. Americans love politics, but they love their money more. 

I'm not sure where you're going with this. 

First, I'm not knocking Nike as a product.  They do indeed make great shoes.  But they're no better than, say, Avia, New Balance, Adidas...  I don't believe the price justifies any purported quality difference.

Nike is one of the most expensive athletic wear brands on the market.  In my mind, it is easier for people who buy an expensive product to give it up in favor of a cheaper (but still good quality) product.  So, htat is greater motivation to participate in such a boycott.

1 minute ago, MormonGator said:

The left supports Nike now, but for awhile remember the left hated them because of slave labor. Oddly, the left doesn't care about that now. Many on the left only care about the latest hip trend. That's why they don't care about womens/gay rights now, they only care about transgender rights now. In a decade when transgenderism isn't hip anymore, they'll forget about that and move on to the next one. 

Again, I'm not sure where you're going with this.  As I said, people already know Nike.  Those who would move toward Nike have already done so.  Not too many MORE will go buy their product because of this.  But plenty will be motivated to leave Nike because of it.

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22 minutes ago, Mores said:

I'm not sure where you're going with this. 

 

It's very simple. A Nike boycott has no chance because: 
 

28 minutes ago, MormonGator said:

 Like it or not, a TON of people are still going to buy their shoes. 

And...

23 minutes ago, Mores said:

 But plenty will be motivated to leave Nike because of it.

No they won't. Right now, you already love or hate Nike. There aren't many people out there who said "Well, I supported them during the Kapernick drama but not anymore." 

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2 hours ago, MormonGator said:

It's very simple. A Nike boycott has no chance because:

And...

Scratching head...

I was referring to your statement here:

2 hours ago, MormonGator said:

Not because we cared about their politics, we cared about our wallets. Like it or not, a TON of people are still going to buy their shoes. Americans love politics, but they love their money more.

You seem to be saying:

1. People care about having money
2. Therefore, they're going to spend money on a more expensive shoe even though an equal quality shoe can be had for much less money.

I didn't understand that line of reasoning.  So, I was guessing you meant something else (hence, I said that I didn't know where you were going with that).  But the explanation you gave in your latest post had nothing to do with that.  Do you understand my confusion?

2 hours ago, MormonGator said:

No they won't. Right now, you already love or hate Nike. There aren't many people out there who said "Well, I supported them during the Kapernick drama but not anymore." 

That's possible.  I don't think either of us has any statistics on that.  But I tend to think the way I do because:

1. Most of us were just rolling our eyes at that point (Kapernick Kneeling).  Today it's gotten a lot more serious.  At least it seems like to me that all of politics has gotten a lot more serious.  People aren't allowed to be on the sidelines anymore.

2.  There was no organization or publicity for an organized boycott.  But today, petitions are being signed, memes for boycott are being spread throughout social media.  Things are changing.

Does that mean it HAS to work?  No.  The thread title says it "may" work.  Most boycotts don't work.  I readily admitted that. I knew the Target boycott would never go anywhere for the very reasons I stated.  But there are many conditions exist with this that may actually work.  It has a much better than average chance of working.

But that doesn't mean anything to anyone here because it seems everyone on this thread has already made up their minds.  That's not a swipe at you.  It's just a common thread I've seen in all the posts thus far.

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10 minutes ago, Mores said:

1. People care about having money

Yup.

10 minutes ago, Mores said:

2. Therefore, they're going to spend money on a more expensive shoe even though an equal quality shoe can be had for much less money.

Nope. Nike isn't expensive to some people. 

10 minutes ago, Mores said:

 But today, petitions are being signed, memes for boycott are being spread throughout social media.  Things are changing.

They aren't changing at all. In a few weeks no one will care about this or remember. It'll be as successful as when conservatives boycotted Target during the transgender bathroom thing. Clearly, it brought Target to it's knees, right? Or, what about the Beauty and the Beast boycott from 2017? That movie didn't make any money. https://www.boxofficemojo.com/movies/?id=beautyandthebeast2017.htm

In fact, the Kapernick drama did wonders for Nike sales, so this boycott might help too. https://abcnews.go.com/Business/nike-sales-booming-kaepernick-ad-invalidating-critics/story?id=59957137

At the end of the day, feel free to boycott whatever you'd like. It's not my money or time you are wasting, so go for it. 

 

Edited by MormonGator

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One of the problems with boycotting (one of many) is that people grossly over estimate their own power. Mike (pulling names out of the sky) refuses to watch the NFL because of the Kapernick drama. All of his Facebook friends and members of his church also agree with him. He goes home and is baffled why the NFL is still drawing great ratings https://www.thewrap.com/what-drove-the-nfls-tv-ratings-increase-in-2018/. After all, everyone he knows agrees with him and is doing the same thing. What Mike fails to comprehend (even though he might give it lip service) is that him and his friends represent .0000000000000000000000000000001% of the NFL viewing public and they have absolutely no power. So if they stomp their feet, stop watching and put the pacifier back in their mouths, it won't do anything at all. It's done strictly for their own benefit to feel moral and righteous. 

For the record @Mores, I think you are much smarter than Mike and don't fall in that category.  Needless to say I have a rather low opinion of those on the right and the left who demand boycotts when a company does something that they don't agree with. I feel 100% the same way when SJWs boycott Chick-Fil-A. Which I try to go to as much as possible just to irritate the left. 

Edited by MormonGator

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38 minutes ago, MormonGator said:

I feel 100% the same way when SJWs boycott Chick-Fil-A. Which I try to go to as much as possible just to irritate the left.

 

54 minutes ago, Mores said:

But that doesn't mean anything to anyone here because it seems everyone on this thread has already made up their minds.  

You aren't the only one who goes to Chik Fil A for that reason. I do love their chicken, but a dark part of me also enjoys watching liberals erupt when I talk about how good it is.

As to @Mores statement, I'd be happy if Nike got brought down a peg. I still remember their use of slave labour to make shoes, and this flag thing really demonstrates their leftist pandering. It's just that historically boycotts don't work (Chick Fil A, more movies than I can count etc.) Calls for boycotts just have the effect of driving up business for the one being targeted.  Maybe this one will be different but I'm skeptical.

Edited by Midwest LDS

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1 minute ago, Midwest LDS said:

calls for boycotts just have the effect of driving up business for the one being targetted.  

Exactly.

For the record, I think @Mores is a great guy. Even though I don't agree with him on this issue.  

Edited by MormonGator

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8 hours ago, Mores said:
  • About 1/3 to 1/2 of the country are very upset at Nike.

The percentage that is "very upset" is likely in single digits, if it even breaks out of the 1%.  The percentage that is willing to answer a poll that they are very upset is probably higher, but I think it's a misrepresentation.  My guess is 95% or more of people won't change their purchasing decisions based on Nike's politicized advertising.

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For the record.  I won't buy Nike.  They gave money to a guy who gave money to a cop killer.  Sometimes it is the principle that matters.  I have some other things to say about Nike and their chosen spokesidiot, but then Pam would ban me for language.

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8 hours ago, NeuroTypical said:

The Passion of the Christ movie was probably got 400-600% more moviegoers interested than if nobody had said anything.

 

3 hours ago, MormonGator said:

Or, what about the Beauty and the Beast boycott from 2017? That movie didn't make any money. https://www.boxofficemojo.com/movies/?id=beautyandthebeast2017.htm

 

2 hours ago, Midwest LDS said:

It's just that historically boycotts don't work (Chick Fil A, more movies than I can count etc.)

I think movies are a poor counterexample. Of course boycotting movies doesn't work. The argument for boycotting a movie is usually because it has content you wouldn't/shouldn't approve of. You can either take their word for it (and usually it's some organization you've never heard of) or you find out for yourself. And that means watching the dratted thing to see what all the hullabaloo was about. If you are going to take a side you will either pay Hollywood to gather data, or you will advertise for the film by keeping the topic current.

With shoes or chik-fil-a or similar products where the boycott is based on what the company stands for or advertises, you don't have to buy the product to see if you agree with their stance. I'm not taking a side on the viability of a boycott, just that movies are a poor counterexample.

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17 minutes ago, mordorbund said:

 

 

I think movies are a poor counterexample. Of course boycotting movies doesn't work. The argument for boycotting a movie is usually because it has content you wouldn't/shouldn't approve of. You can either take their word for it (and usually it's some organization you've never heard of) or you find out for yourself. And that means watching the dratted thing to see what all the hullabaloo was about. If you are going to take a side you will either pay Hollywood to gather data, or you will advertise for the film by keeping the topic current.

With shoes or chik-fil-a or similar products where the boycott is based on what the company stands for or advertises, you don't have to buy the product to see if you agree with their stance. I'm not taking a side on the viability of a boycott, just that movies are a poor counterexample.

Fair enough, but there are enough examples of product and company boycotts that have failed to make successful boycotts the exception rather than the rule. I could Google them and post the results but I'm at work ☺

FYI I don't buy Nike and I won't for personal reasons, but I don't expect them to go out of business anytime soon.

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1 hour ago, Midwest LDS said:

FYI I don't buy Nike and I won't for personal reasons

That's how I feel about Ben and Jerrys ice cream. 

2 hours ago, mirkwood said:

  Sometimes it is the principle that matters. 

It is, as long as the I agree that the principle is noble. After all, in theory someone could "stand on principle" and never shop at Chik-Fil-A again. 

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59 minutes ago, MormonGator said:

That's how I feel about Ben and Jerrys ice cream. 

It is, as long as the I agree that the principle is noble. After all, in theory someone could "stand on principle" and never shop at Chik-Fil-A again. 

I don't give Ben and Jerry's my money either.

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Guest Mores

Here's Nike's financials:

https://www.marketwatch.com/investing/stock/nke/financials

Kapernick was signed as the spokesman for Nike in 2017.  What has happened with Nike's financials?  Well, a mixed bag.

By some measures, Nike saw a small uptick in gross profits.  But that includes accounting items that have nothing to do with consumer decisions.  It would be ideal to simply look at sales.  But we have to take into account inflation effects.  There we're a little bit more muddy.

The actual growth rate has been steady for the past three years (2016-2018 closing fiscal years).  I haven't looked at 2019 yet, that would be from different sources since they are not included in the link provided.

From the raw sales data, we have two measures of inflation to consider: 1 - The inflation of consumer goods in general (which affect the decisions of the shoppers) and 2 - the inflation of cost of goods sold -- which we have on the chart provided.  This gives us a picture of how it has benefited Nike's profits.

Then we have to include the population growth.  If we see 5% growth in sales and we also have a 5% growth in population, that tells us that it isn't really due to an increase in their marketshare.

We see 6.16% boost to revenue in that first year of Kapernick.
We see a CPI adjustment o 4.4%
We see an increase to COGS of 5.0%
Population increase was about 0.7%

Bottom line is that we saw the smallest of smallest boosts to the bottom line due to "anything special" that year.  And it is about the same as the previous years. Of course, this is only a superficial look at the actual changes to Nike's sales.  But there seems to be nothing in publicly available financial data that indicates that Kapernick changed much of ANYthing for Nike (good or bad).

There was an initial backlash for Nike when they announced hiring Kapernick.  Their stocks took a nosedive for a couple of days.  But they've since recovered.  It was real and pretty clear.  But in the big scheme, it amounted to a blip on the radar.

We'll take another look in a couple years and see if there is even a blip on the radar for this Betsy Ross Flag thing.

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