In “Rhetoric of Branding”, Nike’s clever branding is analyzed piece by piece. I think that as we are about to publish an online magazine, we can learn a lot from Nike’s approach. When designing an online environment, we have to think about the reader as well as the writers/photographers etc. who we choose to publish, as well as find solutions that we as a team feel comfortable with. Yes, not an easy task. But in this analysis of the branding of Nike, several clever and usable ideas are presented.
Firstly, Nike’s logo is brilliant. Why wouldn’t we come up with a logo too? The logo, with or without the word “Din”, could be repeated on all of the pages, sort of keeping it together and this way we could brand us as an online magazine as well. Nike has found a logo that “rhetorically represents success and visually ties into the ancient gods of sport explains its success as a successful, simple and recognizable trademark. This clear logo is a perfect example of mixing rhetorical semiotics (recognizable links to wings of gods and the check of a job well-done) and simplicity (the logo is one swift brush stroke) to create a rhetorically strong brand basis.” Indeed, we rarely think about ancient gods when we see Nike’s logo, but it’s all there. There is really something clever in that logo in my opinion. I would say that many people are not even familiar with this reference to Greek god’s but nevertheless, the logo still conveys a certain message of success and victory with its shape: far from clumsy, awkward or difficult, full of energy, velocity and power. To me, Nike’s logo is a Jedi mind trick. And the logo combined with the message “Just Do It”, is a very effective image in our eyes. As it is said in the article, the actual message behind the words is a lot more: “don’t think, don’t ask, don’t talk about it, don't regret it, just do it!” That’s a whole lot of meaning from three words. Could we use the word distortion as a “slogan” like this, as someone pointed out, “Din” can be drawn out of it: DistortIoN?
Nike is also trying to reach women through the “Real Women” campaign, which I also liked very much: the colors, layouts, design. I would say that women could relate to that. With “Din”, the lesson learned would be aspiring to layout and design that would appeal to both men and women. Not too girly but not too plain or high-tech or whatever men prefer (Call of Duty/Terminator etc...).
Finally, the most important point in my opinion: simplicity. Nobody wants to be lost in an internet page. Clear navigation, colors that are repeated (or that are logical in some other way), finding “a sense of cohesion where everything relates and everything flows together”. It is also said that “the site attempts to tell a story about the different aspects of this brand, essentially saying that there is something for everyone”, which is something important too: it needs to be approachable and reader-friendly: who would like to read something that is too difficult to reach? From the features that do not work on Nike’s website, jargon and occasional difficulty in navigating the site was one point made. Simplicity is the key when dealing with these problems too.