We recently talked about how Nike is has a history of being ahead of the game on engaging sports fans on mobile, and it looks like they’ve done in again. Last year, Nike launched the Nike NBA Connected Jerseys, which allow fans to leverage NFC technology to tap their smartphone to the jersey to unlock exclusive content. But wait…didn’t Apple just unlock NFC in its new iPhones? Yeah, it did. But Nike saw this trend coming, and worked the NFC-reading tech into their NikeConnect app, creating an experience that’s just as interactive as it is memorable. So it’s warranted that we talk through a few reasons that Nike used used the futuristic tech for a mobile-driven fan experience that works:
When the jersey owner “taps in” to the experience, they’re not getting generic content. They’re getting content that’s totally personalized to the jersey they own. So for example, if you “tap in” with Durant’s jersey, you’re getting exclusive Durant highlight reels, Golden State Warriors schedules and stats, and even a chance to listen to Durant’s game day playlist. It’s a totally connected experience with the physical jersey that you just bought.
We’ve said it before: NFC is the most seamless way to provide personalized mobile experiences. Think about it–in the past, if brands like Nike wanted to connect a cool mobile experience to their products, they would have had to attach a tag to the product that prompted the user to download an app, which would lead them to generic content–not at all personalized to the product they just bought. And if they wanted a personalized experience? They’d have to input their product number manually and create an account to make sure their preferences saved for next time. The ability to tie a unique activation method like an NFC tag to specific products is a game-changer for brands that want to provide personalized mobile, because it makes it as easy as one tap.
Overall, Nike has used mobile tech to provide a really personalized and memorable experience (one that I experienced myself when I bought my Sabonis jersey). And they did it by using technology that was way ahead of its time. It’s definitely an indication of what’s to come now that this NFC technology is accessible without a third party reader.