Adidas Ditches TV Ads in Favor of Mobile to Better Reach Generation Z


In a bold move that coincides with their “Creating the New” worldwide campaign, Adidas has decided to stop advertising on television and focus solely on advertising for mobile devices. You may be thinking this is a risky move, but in actuality Adidas knows exactly who they’re targeting: Generation Z. The concept comes on the heels of a study by IBM for the National Retail Federation which found that although Gen Zers (born 1995-2014) interact with their world predominantly through their devices, they prefer to do their shopping inside actual stores. In a study of 15,000 consumers aged 13-21 across 16 countries, IBM found  that 67 percent of Gen Zers shop in a bricks-and-mortar store most of the time, with another 31 percent shopping in-store sometimes, indicating 98 percent of Gen Zers shop in store.

These findings, along with a study by Euclid Analytics , came to a similar conclusion –  the general conception that these consumers are moving away from brick-and-mortar retail stores is getting turned on its head.

Reaching out to the digital natives

While companies like Walmart are killing themselves finding smart e-tail technologies to draw consumers back into their stores it seems like Adidas is reaching out to a generation of consumers that live on their devices and trusting them to spend their money in brick-and-mortar stores like they are wont to do anyway. According to Fung Global and Retail Tech, in 2013 Gen Z’s direct spending power was estimated to be at $44 billion, based on US kids and teens receiving an average $16.90 weekly allowance.

Numbers like this illustrate the power that Gen Z is going to have over the next decade. One of the most obvious trends among Gen Zers is to expect higher quality experiences, more frequently, and with immediate gratification. This demographic is also more likely to change brand loyalty based on poor technology integration, an uninspiring experience, or bad social media. To put it concisely, this generation is incredibly tech savvy, expects everyone (including brands) to be tech savvy, and will penalize those that aren’t, all the while controlling a massive share of the direct and indirect buying power in the US consumer market. When 98 percent of Gen Zers shop in-store (67 percent often, 31 percent sometimes) the worry isn’t getting them into the stores, but reaching them in intelligent and exciting ways that appeases their fickle brand loyalty.

As the world becomes more and more digitized, and Gen Zers become a larger portion of the consumer market, companies are going to have to bend to this demographic’s desires. There is a constant ebb and flow of catering to the consumers that are most likely to spend money with your company. Knowing your customer’s needs, AND knowing how to reach them is a powerful tool for ever business. Getting this tool to translate this information into revenue for your business is a whole other battle, but at least if you know who and where your customers are you have a better chance at reaching them. Adidas’ seemingly bold (borderline risky) move to ignore TV advertising shows they are directly targeting the customers they want to sell to. The Gen Zers may not be your target market, but following Adidas’ model of targeting specific consumers and understanding how to reach them will bring you and your business one step closer to turning them into paying clients.

Dante Berardi Jr.

Dante Berardi Jr.

Dante Berardi Jr comes to Hubba from a background in content creation and grant writing for musicians and artists. A writer/musician himself, Dante has a thirst to consume words and the stories they create when pieced together. He sleeps too little, reads too much, lives on coffee and will talk your ear off about vinyl.
Dante Berardi Jr.