Nike Running: Using Social Media to Manage Customer Relationships

Nike Running, social media, Twitter, CRM, FacebookAn abundance of people take to social media every day to share the experiences that they have with brands, products, and customer service departments. While it’s easy to find plenty of companies that aren’t utilizing social media correctly and learn what not to do, I thought that I would highlight a brand that’s doing it right. Nike Running uses social media to really engage in customer conversations and manage customer relationships online.

One of the reason I chose Nike Running is because I come from a long line of runners; My grandpa was a very successful cross-country and track and field coach, my dad was a successful runner, and since “retiring” from college soccer, I’ve learned to love challenging myself to run farther and faster. That being said, I’m not a huge proponent of Nike running shoes. They just don’t work for my body and foot type. I may not love their shoes, but the work that Nike Running does on social media is noteworthy for any aspiring social media professional.

What Nike Running does right:

1. They don’t constantly try to sell with their content

Nike Running, social media, Twitter, CRM, Facebook

Although I don’t work for Nike Running, I think it’s safe to assume that the brand’s target audience is runners (duh!). The brand could easily post about all of their different running products, but that wouldn’t be engaging for their customers. Instead, Nike Running posts inspiring and informative content that is of interest to the running community.

Nike Running, social media, Twitter, CRM, Facebook

For instance, on May 31, Nike Running tweeted that Hellen Obiri broke the Prefontaine Classic 1500 meter record with the world’s fastest time this year (above). This information is obviously pertinent to Nike Running’s followers, and sharing it gives the brand more authority in the running world.

Nike Running’s Twitter feed also informed followers that the Prefontaine Classic was underway and let them know where they could tune in to watch. By not pushing their product or agenda, Nike Running becomes trustworthy, and more runners will turn to the brand when they have questions, or will purchase from the brand when they’re searching for running gear in the future.

2. They listen and engage their followers

Nike Running, social media, Twitter, CRM, Facebook

Customers want to be heard, and this is where Nike Running’s social media efforts really stand out. The company has over 428,000 followers on Twitter and 2.5 million likes on Facebook, and still they take the time to engage with their customers. As a consumer, it’s flattering that such a popular brand would take the time to respond to me. Their responses and engagement show customers that they’re important.

Recently one customer reached out to Nike Running and asked how he could increase his stamina. With the abundance of comments and likes that Nike Running gets, they could have easily ignored the question, but instead they asked if the customer was training for a race or running for overall fitness. Once they customer responded, they sent him to a link where he could get the answers he was searching for. They went above and beyond to really get to know their follower.

3. They use a relatable and inspiring voice

Nike Running, social media, Twitter, CRM, Facebook

Many runners turn to Nike Running for tips and advice. Instead of using a patronizing or superior tone, Nike Running uses a voice of a brand that intends to inspire. The company recently tweeted, “We’ve come this far. Now let’s take things further. Push each other.” As runners, we all have those days that are a struggle. The Nike Running brand becomes more human and relatable by recognizing the struggles, and encouraging its social media followers to push through on the rough days.

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