• Loading stock data...
Saturday, March 2, 2024

How Inclusion, Jen Welter and Quavo Propelled Adidas’ Super Bowl Activations

Photo credit: Adidas

Photo credit: Adidas

Adidas’ Super Bowl Week didn’t start with a party. It didn’t start with a product activation or with a spokesman navigating Radio Row.

Instead, it began at the National Center for Civil and Humans, smack in between Martin Luther King Jr. Day and the start Black History Month.

Adidas helped support two panels at the museum, both hosted by Outsports founder Cyd Zeigler. The first explored how sports organizations, corporations, nonprofits and athletes can build inclusive environments in professional sports and included Adidas North America President Zion Armstrong, Olympic gold medalist Greg Louganis and former NFL player Esera Tuaolo.

The second focused more on the NFL and the LGBTQ community with Falcons Assistant GM Scott Pioli, Vikings Vice President of Legal and Social Karin Nelson, 49ers Assistant Coach Katie Sowers and NBC Sports’ Peter King.

READ MORE: How a New Partnership Involving Tacos Is Kicking Off Hype for Super Bowl LVI

Behind the panelists stood images of civil rights legends Muhammad Ali and Billie Jean King — along with Adidas logos. In the evening, Adidas supported Tuaolo’s second annual inclusion party.

“It’s events like these that help raise awareness, create dialogue and determine action to help our brand, consumers and society to conquer problems that still exist,” says Jeff McGillis, vice president of Adidas U.S. Sports.

These events did not sell Adidas apparel, but instead, during the most scrutinized sports media week of the year, gave Adidas an identity.

In a similar manner, Adidas magnified a group of women consistently overlooked: football players. On Saturday morning, the brand partnered with Jen Welter to host a football camp for girls. Welter made waves in 2015 when she became the first woman to coach in the NFL, serving as a coaching intern for the Arizona Cardinals during training camp and the preseason. This past December, Welter was named as a defensive specialist for the Atlanta Legends in the Alliance of American Football’s inaugural season.

While Welter ran the camp, Adidas also announced a multi-year partnership with Welter. As part of the deal, she will also co-host camps for underprivileged kids in New York, Los Angeles, Boston, Miami and Dallas.

[mc4wp_form id=”8260″]

But it isn’t just about running camps. The partnership with Welter is meant to break new ground. Welter will help “explore new ways to increase access to the sport for young girls, including utilizing the camps to secure digital data from female athletes to help inform the future creation of Adidas women’s products.”

“As a brand, we believe that through sport, we have the opportunity to empower and change the lives of young girls, and together, we want everyone to have equal access to football,” McGillis says. “Our goal is to inspire women and help them perform better on the field while creating a product specifically designed for the elite performance of female athletes. Working with Jen helps achieve that mission.”

Adidas, which launched its “She Breaks Barriers” campaign in December, showed off the hard evidence during Super Bowl Week with a one-of-one custom pair of “Adidas Made for Jen Welter” (AM4JM), the first women’s football cleat digitally created at SPEEDFACTORY USA in Atlanta.

Adidas has already come out with women’s-specific soccer cleat models, and the football equivalent might be on the way. Atlanta makes sense as a setting to launch such a concept as girls flag football took a leap this past year. The Atlanta Falcons and the Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation helped establish an experimental flag football season this year among Gwinnett County Schools. The final two games of the season took place the Thursday night before the Super Bowl inside Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

From an activation perspective, Adidas, as it has in past Super Bowl Weeks, created its own VIP lounge outside of the main hoopla of the Super Bowl Media Center and Radio Row. Adidas football stars such as Aaron Rodgers, Patrick Mahomes, Alvin Kamara, Von Miller, Dak Prescott and JuJu Smith-Schuster were among those who made appearances. But the lounge also hosted Aaron Judge and another notable non-football-playing Adidas partner.

READ MORE: Inside the Revenue Generation and Marketing Frenzy of a Super Bowl

Quavo was a fixture of Adidas’ Super Bowl Week, showing up at events and wearing Adidas gear. He also starred in Adidas’ “Only in Atlanta” digital video series, featuring the rapper and Adidas’ cast of NFL stars. With the Super Bowl in Atlanta, Adidas had arguably the city’s most recognizable modern star on its programming.

“Seeing the looks on the local high school players’ faces at [our] 7v7 football tourney when Quavo and Alvin Kamara walked in was priceless,” McGillis says. “It’s moments like that which really put things in perspective during the lead-up to Super Bowl LIII.”

Adidas’ most notable Super Bowl activation featured its partnership with Japanese lifestyle brand BAPE (A Bathing Ape). BAPE’s unique camouflage design was repurposed on adidas football footwear, apparel and equipment, providing a streetwear look between the lines. Adidas and BAPE launched the line at an Atlanta pop-up on Feb. 1, with the collection going live online and in stores on Feb. 2, the day before the Super Bowl.

While Adidas bounced around with feel-good stories and product launches in Atlanta, McGillis reiterates the theme many apparel brands keep pushing as of late.

“For us, Super Bowl week was all about creating the unexpected,” he says. “#CreatorsUnite in Atlanta for Adidas. We brought the best in sport and culture together to cement our position as the ‘Creator Brand.’”

Innovation and progress — that was the name of the game for Adidas in Atlanta this year.

Copy Link
Link Copied
Link Copied

What to Read

Sheer Madness: What You Need to Know About MLB’s New Uniform Saga

MLB’s reworked uniforms have become a major source of spring training controversy.
Aug 15, 2019; Baltimore, MD, USA; Chain crew members walk on the field prior to the game between the Green Bay Packers and Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium.

Football Is Finally Getting With the Times, Technologically Speaking

Helmet communications in college and first-down technology in NFL could be coming.

Why New Pac-12 Commissioner Teresa Gould Deserved Better

The first female Power 5 commissioner will inherit her predecessors’ mess.

The Next Women’s Sports Bar Is Inspired by Tennis’s Barrier Breaker

Althea Gibson is the namesake for a bar opening in New York.
podcast thumbnail mobile
Front Office Sports Today

Jenny Cavnar is Breaking Barriers During Oakland’s Strange Season


Featured Today

Oct 5, 2021; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Bob Kendrick, president of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in Kansas City, points to the lettering outside of the museum Tuesday.

How Do You Keep Negro Leagues Baseball History Alive? Put It in a Video Game

Negro Leagues Baseball Museum attracting increased donations, visits from ‘MLB The Show.’
February 26, 2024

The Victor Wembanyama Rookie Card Market Hasn’t Matched His Hype

A cooling market and Fanatics autograph deal leaves big-money collectors waiting.
February 25, 2024

Sham Gods: The Rapidly Growing World of Sports Impersonators on X

Fake Schefters and Wojs, fabricated trade demands, and borrowed profile pictures.
Sep 24, 2023; Oakland, California, USA; A general view of the Oakland Athletics dugout after the game against the Detroit Tigers at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum.
February 24, 2024

Murky Future: Everything You Need to Know About the A’s Move to Las Vegas

Breaking down one of the most drawn-out, multifaceted sagas in sports.


Powered By

Careers in Sports

Looking for a new job? Check out these featured listings and search for openings all over the world.
Multiple - USA Careers
Multiple - USA Careers
Multiple - USA Careers
Drew Brees smiling while wearing hat

Drew Brees, PointsBet Pull Off Elaborate Lightning Publicity Stunt

The video racked up over 2 million views in about 12 hours.
al michaels and kirk hergstreit
September 15, 2022

Amazon’s Advertising Blitz Ahead Of First ‘Thursday Night Football’

‘Thursday Night Football’ has launched massive marketing takeover ahead of Chiefs-Chargers.
September 16, 2022

NBA Legend Scottie Pippen Latest Celebrity To Endorse LIV Golf

The former Chicago Bull is part of LIV’s celebrity marketing campaign.

How LivePass is Redefining Ticketing for the Next Generation of Fans

The next wave of ticketing technology.
June 21, 2022

NBA Finals Broke Records on Social Media

The NBA closed out the season with a bang on social media, eclipsing 2 billion video plays for a 19% increase over last year.
June 21, 2022

Gallo Winery Could Be New Player For Super Bowl Spots

Anheuser-Busch is giving up Super Bowl alcohol exclusivity for first in decades. NFL sponsor E. & J. Gallo Winery might step up with own commercials in the Big Game.
June 13, 2022

NBA’s Latest Floating Court Hits London’s River Thames

Hennessy continued their global initiative with the NBA by creating a floating court in the River Thames.
June 13, 2022

Steph Curry Is NBA’s Social Media King

Steph Curry isn’t only dominating on the court, he’s become the king of the NBA’s social and digital push.