Nike Snowday Advertisement Rhetorical Analysis

Ethos, Pathos and Logos in Nike Snowday Advertisement

Nike, the leading sports shoe, apparel and equipment brand of the world has a strong presence around the world. Its brand image and strong reputation are a result of consistent focus upon quality, a great marketing strategy, firm focus upon customer needs and evolving trends as well as its customer connection. Faster growth of Nike in recent years is a result of its dedication to quality and higher attention to customer experience. Nike’s popularity does not decrease and even if some controversy arises here or there, its marketing strategy still remains a winner. Fast growth comes from focus upon quality and a strong marketing strategy helps sustain the momentum. Nike promotes its brand and latest products from several channels which include a mix of digital channels and physical distribution network. Another important factor that is driving its growth in major markets around the globe is its ability to connect with its customers’ emotions. Its advertising strategy has a core pillar which is video marketing and Nike videos which include promotional, educational and motivational videos have a distinct appeal. The company continues to focus its video marketing efforts upon the soul of sports, persistence, courage and the desire to emerge from challenges. With time, these efforts have started producing better results and many times when it releases a new videos, sales of its products just shoot up the next day. This is another sign that when it comes to marketing, Nike knows what its fans and followers around the world love and are waiting for. YouTube is the primary video marketing channel for brands around the world. It is an effective channel for promotion and to grow overall influence in market regions where other channels of promotion prove to  be less effective. The Snowday ad by Nike is also an interesting, engaging and outstanding advertisement.


Snowday advertisement by Nike
Nike Snowday Advertisement (Nike.com)

Ethos

Ethical appeal means credibility and trust in the advertisement and the sources from which an advertisement generates credibility. Building trust is the first important step to creating value and making more space in the hearts of your customers. Where does ethical appeal in the advertisement of Nike come from? What makes people rely on a brand and its advertisement? There are several sources of ethical appeal in Nike advertisements but the primary source is the brand itself and its customer connection. Millions of Nike fans rely on Nike brand, its logo, products and advertisements. Its ads are several times as engaging as short movies. Snow Day ad also derives its ethical appeal from nature. Nature and nature’s beauty are highlighted in the advertisement which focuses upon not letting an opportunity of turning adversity into an opportunity go. People remain inside on snowy days but Nike athletes are ready to turn it into a day full of adventure and sports. Ethical appeal in the advertisement also comes from the presence of star athletes in the game. More than twenty of them form a team and turn a snow day into a day full of activity. There are both male and female athletes in the snow day team. In the lead role is Robert James Gronkowski (American football player) who wakes up to an irresistibly beautiful snowy morning and breaks the window pane with his head to peep outside into a snowclad world. He whispers Snowday and dresses up for the game.  Ndamukong Suh is waiting outside with a challenge and snowballs him. The two move on and collect more athletes on their way to a snowclad field. Other athletes that join them include female athletes Marlen Esparza, Paula Findley, Carli Lloyd, Elena Delle Donne, as well as male athletes like Odell Beckham Jr, Ben Roethlisberger, Antonio Brown and Paul George. These people form two teams, one led by Rob Gronkowski and another by Ndamukong Suh.

Rob Gronkowsky in Nike Snowday ad.
Rob Gronkowski features in the lead role in Nike Snowday ad.

The presence of so many athletes in the advertisement adds to its credibility. This is a common practice in sports marketing where athletes or movie stars speak for a cause on behalf of a brand. Nike as well as its rival brands follow this strategy to gain credibility and connect with their audience. This is also a tactic marketers employ to grow trust and strengthen their bond with customers. Nike mostly hires sports stars for this job and when there are so many of them in a single advertisement, there fans and followers will definitely love the ad. You can call it Nike’s failsafe trap but Nike’s marketing and ads are just like that.

Snowday Advertisement by Nike.
Nike Snowday ad teaches teamwork.

Pathos:

Pathos refers to emotional appeal in an ad and connecting with customer emotions is the best method to attract and retain them. You must focus upon what your customers and biggest fans believe in, what they love and what brings them the highest satisfaction. Nike is selling to a large audience of male and female consumers and athletes. However, to successfully connect with the emotions of its audience, it retains its focus on teamwork which is central to winning. Teamwork is a central theme in this advertisement and how teamwork can help overcome obstacles in life is also a focus of the advertisement. Everyone wants to win in his life. However, winning alone is sometimes not as great as winning together. Whether it is rain or frost, winners come together to create new wins. This is how Nike excites its audience to catch the thrill of the game that goes on in their everyday lives. There is everything in the advertisement from the thrill of working against adversities to motivation for everyone who wants to win. In this way, the Nike ad also motivates its audience and touches their emotions in a manner that no other player does. How does Nike inject emotional appeal in its advertisements? Nike focuses on the emotions that connect millions of sports fans around the world. Every game has intense emotions associated with it and Nike has mastered the art of rekindling the passion in millions of sports loving hearts.

Paula Findley in Nike snowday ad.
Several Prominent female athletes feature in the Nike Snowday ad including Paula Findley.

Logos:

Logos is the logical appeal and a method to build an understanding with your customers. What your customers find logical helps them understand your brand and your customer connection grows stronger with it. Logos or logical appeal in the advertisement comes from its theme. The theme is to win together and work as teams to create bigger wins in life. Reasoning is a technique of persuasion employed to win hearts and minds of your target audience. A good marketer knows well how to employ reasoning or logic in an advertisement to bring the focus of its audience to the brand. How does the Nike ad persuade its audience? Why are there two teams in the game? What is the reason behind including passionate players in an advertisement? All of them together create an intense game and the intensity of the game is what matters for the audience whichever side viewers stand with. There is some aggression in the players, some passion, some friendship but also some rush. All these things are reasonable on the field. Every emotion is logical because you need to play intensely with a pinch of aggression as well as lots of passion and a focus on the goal to win. This is how Nike turns an advertisement into a winner.   

Elena Delle Donne in Snowday ad
Presence of female athletes like Elena Delle Donne ads glamour and beauty to the Nike snowday ad.

Whom does the Nike snow day ad target? Who are its audience?


Nike snow day ad targets mainly young people – both male and female. The presence of female athletes in the advertisement helps Nike connect with its female customers and build trust. Nike is targeting youth aged 16-40 mainly through the advertisement. Nike’s audience is global and audiences from all regions can connect with the theme of the ad. However, the presence of American athletes in the ad shows that it is mainly targeted at the U.S. consumers. U.S. based consumers form the biggest segment of Nike consumers.  In the United States, the number of Nike stores is 384 (2018). Nike also employs in store marketing techniques to reach its consumers. However, video marketing helps it achieve higher conversion and generate more leads. It is why, whenever the company releases a new advertisement, next day its online and physical sales are boosted which signals its heavy returns from video marketing. Growth of online channels has helped brands like Nike reach a larger customer segment and create new channels of sales of revenue. Nike’s own website and YouTube as well as Twitter are among primary marketing channels the company uses to grow its marketing reach and sales.  With YouTube, marketing to a global audience is easier for Nike and its rival players. Nike has targeted male and female shoppers that like to buy trendy and fashionable sports shoes but its main target are the soccer fans in America who are just mad for NFL. Nike captures this madness in most of its advertisements and this is how it has established a stronger connection with sports and sports lovers from everywhere in the world.

Abhijeet Pratap

I am Abhijeet Pratap, editor of notesmatic. I am an MBA with marketing (major). Apart from writing on various topics in business management, marketing and English literature, I like to read and write about technology.