Great teams train together on a regular basis, sometimes even twice a day ahead of a major event. They need to really know each other’s strengths, weaknesses, style of play and creativity. I’ve recognized this in-person contact is just as important in business, especially in my world as the general manager of Key Cities for adidas in North America. I’m always thinking about how we can connect more closely with consumers and young athletes in the six cities around the world that we know are the most influential: New York, London, Paris, Shanghai, Tokyo and Los Angeles.
Take LA, the second largest city in the U.S. It’s home to some of the best athletes in the world, like basketball’s Candace Parker and Brandon Ingram, football’s Joey Bosa and baseball’s Justin Turner and Chase Utley and is undoubtedly the the world’s biggest cross-section of entertainment, sport and fashion.
Here are three ways adidas is reaching the City of Angels community right now.
1. Know your audience and where they are at
One of the most unique things about Los Angeles is that it’s actually a collection of 88 distinct cities. Each neighborhood has its own vibe. Recently we opened a new adidas Originals store on one of the most vibrant blocks in America – Abbot Kinney Blvd. in Venice, California.
We love that the Venice neighborhood represents creativity and individuality – two things central to who we are as a brand. With this store, we tried to capture that unique spirit and give creators, artists, musicians and trendsetters in the neighborhood a new place to come and be inspired. Every detail of the store was inspired by the eclectic Venice culture. More than just a place to sell shoes, our Abbot Kinney store hosts regular events and installations tailored just for the local community.
2. Create memorable experiences
Virtual sales meetings and online project kick-offs may have a place in your business calendar but nothing beats face-to-face sales meetings and attending the last game of the season for a team you’ve been rooting for all year.
Making memories for LA’s young athletes and consumers around one of the biggest sporting events of the year, the NBA All-Star Game, is what my team is focusing on. We’re creating an unprecedented experience centered around creativity, sport and culture. The two-day festival at 747 Warehouse Street is filled with exclusive product drops, co-creation stations, speaker series, music performances, tournament play and more.
3. Build a legacy
How can you help turn on-the-ground time into a lasting influence? At adidas we believe, through sport, we have the power to change lives and that’s why we’re partnering with 10 of the most underserved high schools in Los Angeles and empowering their athletes to make positive changes in their communities through sport. We’re giving these schools our best basketball gear to compete on the court and, more importantly, we’re equipping them to be successful leaders and change makers in their communities.
We recently invited 300 student-athletes from these schools to co-create innovative solutions to some of the biggest issues in their communities – access to sport, poverty, drugs, and gang violence to name a few. Sport is so much bigger than the game. Communities and culture are built around sport.