This week Nike came out with a new product, never before seen! The hijab. Now I’ll admit, I don’t know much about hijabs. But I do know that they don’t come off when playing sports. Weird? Maybe a little….But that’s not what this article is about. This article is about why that’s a smart decision for the company.
Leading up to International Women’s Day, Nike announced a new product that supports a powerful message of inclusivity of women in sports. Starting next spring, Nike will begin selling their Pro Hijab. It’s lightweight, breathable and has long back to prevent the material from becoming untucked mid-activity. And, of course, it features the iconic Nike swoosh.
While Nike is not the first to design and sell an athletic hijab, they are the first major athletic brand to do so. The polyester sports hijab was designed in collaboration with professional and amateur athletes who wear hijabs.
Leading up to the announcement, Nike Middle East released a commercial featuring female athletes from the Middle East and North Africa. The commercial is in Arabic, but CNN offers a translation. “What will they say about you?” the narrator asks as a woman wearing a hijab steps outside to go for a run. The spot features professional and amateur athletes, including parkour trainer, Amal Mourad; figure skater, Zahra Lari; pop singer; Balquees Fathi; fencer, Inès Boubakri; and boxer, Arifa Bseiso.
As a businessman, I think this is great. Business is universal now, and people from all parts of the world are your customers. If they’re is a buying demographic being under-appreciated, invest in a product. That’s how you capture market share. And that’s how you find new customers. You don’t think these girls will want matching kicks? Joy from one product will lead to sales of others. We all love looking good. Well done Nike. Much respect.