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Learn the 7 Marketing Functions Inspired by Nike

Learn the 7 Functions of Marketing, using Nike's incredible journey as a powerful example, and learn how to promote your brand and sell your products!
by Chris Allmer | May 20 2024
Master the 7 Functions of Marketing: Learn How Nike Did it!

Nike is the most popular sports brand globally and is worth billions of dollars.

And believe it or not, it all started with a simple story: a college track runner and his coach. But what transformed this local legend into a global phenomenon? Marketing.

But we’re not here to chat about your average slogans and flashy ads. We’re talking about a strategic symphony that orchestrated Nike’s rise to the top—the 7 Functions of Marketing.

Think of these functions as a symphony, each playing a crucial role. From understanding customer needs to crafting the perfect price and getting your product everywhere.

In this guide, we’ll show you how the right marketing activities transform a simple story into a global icon, and along the way, we’ll equip you with essential resources—guides, podcasts, and book recommendations.

A Look at the 7 Functions of Marketing and how Nike did it

To explain the marketing function in an easy and relatable way, we’ll stick with the Nike example for a moment. Back in the day, Nike was not more than a logo, and now it is a billion-dollar industry.

1. Promotion is all about communicating your brand and its offerings to potential customers.

Nike, for example, leverages iconic TV commercials featuring athletes like Michael Jordan to reach a broad audience and establish a strong brand image. 

Apart from TV commercials, you can also promote your product through:

  • Social Media
  • Email Marketing
  • Print advertising
  • Content marketing
  • Influencer marketing (think TikTok)

And as promised, we have some more insight on this marketing function. Take a look at “Selling the Invisible” by Harry Beckwith, and learn how a business can then be properly advertised and promoted.


2. Selling is how to transform your fans into loyal supporters.

Take Nike, for instance—they’re masters at selling a feeling, not just shoes. It’s all about inspiring greatness and pushing limits. 

So, when you’re selling, you don’t want to come off as pushy or aggressive. Instead, you want to ignite that spark in your customers, making them feel like they need your product in their lives.

And speaking of the marketing function of selling, have you checked out Brian Tracy‘s “The Psychology of Selling”? It’s the ultimate guide on how to sell stuff without feeling like a sleazy car salesman.


3. Product Management includes the development, design, and improvement of your service or product.

Nike focuses on performance and durability in their product management. 

Their “Just Do It” slogan symbolizes their brand identity and resonates with athletes worldwide.

Maybe also check out our curated list of the “Best 29 Product Management Books”. This marketing book collection is packed with the best practices and strategies that can take your product development game to the next level. 

4. Pricing – Finding the Sweet Spot.

It can be challenging to determine a price for your product, but using in-depth market research can help you make an informed decision

And Nike, for example, are pros at this game. They don’t just slap a random price tag on their products; they carefully craft their prices to match their brand image of premium quality and performance.

You should also check out our book summary in “The Strategy and Tactics of Pricing”. This marketing function book is jam-packed with actionable insights to help businesses like yours develop pricing strategies:


5. Marketing Information Management – it’s all About the Data.

When you want to sell your product, it’s important to collect and important data, such as your customer preferences and demographics. 

Why? Because all this data isn’t just numbers on a spreadsheet; it’s the key to keeping your product development, marketing campaigns, and pricing strategies on point.

You want to understand what your customers want and how to give it to them.

6. Financing: If you want to sell your product, you need money.

That’s why it’s essential to secure a marketing budget within your Finances.

Brands like Nike have huge marketing budgets (4 Billion Dollars in 2023) to support their promotional activities, product development, and of course, sponsorships.

Speaking of finances, have you checked out our collection of “Stress-free Finance Tips”? It’s a collection of books for boosting your personal finances without all the stress and headache.

7. Distribution: Getting the Gear to the Finish Line.

This Marketing Strategy focuses on where to sell your product.

You can go old-school and hit up retail stores, or embrace the digital age and sell online. Don’t forget about wholesalers like Walmart—they’re a huge player in the game too. And there are, of course, sales calls, catalogs, magazines—those are all fair game too!

Nike also utilizes a multichannel distribution strategy. You can find their products in their own retail stores, major sporting goods retailers, online platforms—you name it!

The Power of the 7 Functions of Marketing

Nike’s incredible journey from a simple college track dream to a billion-dollar brand is all thanks to the magic of marketing. By mastering the 7 functions of marketing, they’ve not only created killer products, but also forged a deep connection with their fans

Hopefully, this dive into the 7 marketing functions has shown you how they all work together to turn ideas into big-time brands.

But here’s the thing—marketing isn’t a one-and-done deal. As your business grows and changes, your marketing strategies should evolve too. Staying on top of the game is crucial

That’s why we’ve curated a list of The Best 100 Marketing Books just for you. 

And guess what?

You don’t have to read all of them because we’ve already done that for you. Simply read or listen to the short summaries we’ve provided and get the key ideas from the most important marketing books in just a few minutes.

Just do it:

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