What’s Really Going On Under the Armor?

The sports organization, Under Armor, endorses professional athletes to wear and promote their products. These athletes often choose to tweet pictures of themselves wearing their companies product. This is a very smart and “seemingly” passive way to promote a business, however, sometimes it can cause obvious backlash.

In the case of Bryce Harper, the truth behind the importance and stringency of his endorsement with Under Armor became apparent, when he accidentally took a picture of himself wearing Nike shorts while undergoing physical rehabilitation.  Minutes after taking the picture, it was deleted and a new picture of him completely saturated in Under Armor apparel surfaced. His tweet was exactly the same as the deleted one, word for word, the only difference was the switch in clothing. This goes to show that athletes that are endorsed by a company are under large amounts of pressure to not only wear their product, but also not wear products from other companies.  The following link is the article in question:

http://www.businessinsider.com/bryce-harper-accidentally-tweets-picture-of-himself-wearing-nike-shorts-2013-11

Under Armor’s tactics for endorsing a professional athlete like Bryce Harper are to probably to appeal to the baseball following population demographic and to create exposure for the brand by using an athletic role model that embodies qualities that are important to the company.  According to an article, How to Choose the Right Athlete to Endorse Your Brand, this question is addressed in the following quote:

“Sports athletes and celebrities draw huge attention from corporate sponsors and  media as they appeal to many demographics. An athlete endorsing a product can  transform a brand…Initially the endorsement creates exposure for the brand.”

The article addresses what companies like Under Armor hope to achieve by endorsing athletes and it looks something like this:

“recognition, consideration, favorability, loyalty and ultimately to increased sales of a product.”

The article that addresses finding the right athlete to endorse your brand can be reached in the link below:

http://www.sportsnetworker.com/2011/02/15/athlete-brand-endorsements/

Other ways that Under Armor could use nontraditional forms of communication to achieve their purposes would be through facebook or blogs posted by athletes who endorse their products with keyword hashtags, for example, #baseball and #underarmor.  Under Armor may find other avenues to create brand exposure without blunders from endorsed athletes by exploring new modes of communication.

 

 

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