Jon Wexler of Adidas – Ahead of a Movement

How relationships between brands and major celebrities like Kanye West and Pharrell start (and what  they mean for the future of branding) and why you must be in front of the momentum of the sneaker and street wear industry to succeed…

Jon Wexler, Vice President – Global Entertainment and Influencer Marketing at adidas, shares his story with George Manley (SVP of Sales and Marketing for Souler), along with fashion technology and business development expert Pavan Bahl, for a Souler Speakeasy event in front of a live audience at Chelsea Music Hall in New York City. Presented by Souler.

In this story:

  • The Sneaker industry’s growth from $50 billion in 2017 to an expected $95 billion in 2025, footwear as a whole is valued at $200 billion
  • Brands fear of loyalty, will consumers stay loyal in streetwear, research shows they’re hyper loyal
  • Luxury brands dipping their toes into street wear and looking back at 16 years at Adidas
  • Adidas’ insight to see the differences within their local markets vs their global market
  • Influencer’s power over local markets
  • The growth of adidas over the past few years, and leveling the playing field with Nike
  • Sneaker Tracker, tracking what’s being worn versus what’s being bought
  • Adidas’ focus on influencers starting back as far as 2009
  • The growth of the influencer market
  • Acknowledging the early missteps in the influencer sphere and the ability to course correct and grow
  • Partnerships across verticals
  • Adidas’s innovation on both product and experience
  • Being a market disruptor
  • The shift from brands introducing trends towards brands feeding trends
  • How can you introduce a brand’s point of view while still reflecting that of your consumer’s
  • Nike’s adventure to become a “smaller,” “cooler,” company
  • How Adidas aims to support creators
  • One of the Key Pillars of Adidas, open source mentality
  • Finding innovation in alternative spaces; music, arts, technologists, digital technologists, environmental specialists
  • Adidas’ pledge to stop using plastic has taken 40 tons of plastic out of the marketplace
  • Creating platforms for communities to uplift themselves
  • Making lives better with sport and creativity
  • Adidas’s strategy to look inward versus at what competitor’s are doing. Who do we want to be? What defines us?
  • If you see yourself as something other than your competitor, you’ll never amount to more than that.
  • How to build support teams and family within your work ecosystem
  • Jon’s authenticity as reported by Kanye West, and Kanye’s impact on his life
  • Adidas’s partnerships with Kanye West, Pharrell, Snoop Dogg, Manchester United, Real Madrid, Damian Lillard, Kobe Bryant, Tracy McGrady, amongst others
  • Approaching partnerships with longevity in mind, avoiding flashes in the pan
  • How 3D printing and 4D soles are giving stores independence and customization, feeding the smaller localized markets
  • The emergence of E Sports and its market potential
  • The rabbit holes of the internet, and the partnerships to be had
  • Augmented Reality at ComplexCon, and how to eventize moments and immersive experiences
  • How do you incorporate signed talent without exploiting them
  • America’s new culture of tribalism and “twitterfication”
  • Big brother Josh comes to the stage and we get a view of Jon’s life as a basement DJ
  • How DJing impacted Jon’s life and his ability to learn
  • Adidas’ expansions into London, Paris, Berlin, Shanghai and Tokyo
  • The Rebirth of Adidas Originals and the House Party commercial

Images by Albert Cheung Photography

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