As consumers move to digital devices, many brands have shifted spend to YouTube and Facebook. However, others continue to focus on traditional TV commercials – raising the question of where video budgets are best allocated.

While TV is still important, L2’s Shifting Budgets report finds that social video spend is also necessary to support a brand’s TV presence and drive engagement. In the past year, Nike stepped up investments in both Facebook and YouTube video ads, while Adidas backed out from both platforms and focused on TV. Nike’s strategy ultimately had greater reach, according to the study’s analysis of data.

Nike vs. Adidas

After decreasing YouTube and Facebook video spending by 37% and 42% respectively, Adidas turned to TV. The brand aired nearly three times as many commercials as Nike, mostly in March and April, during school spring sports seasons and the NCAA March Madness Basketball Tournament. This allowed Adidas to pay 61% less per airing, while Nike paid a premium for Olympics and NFL slots.

However, although Nike garnered fewer TV impressions, the brand gained greater reach by complementing the spots with social video. Nike received five times more interactions per TV dollar spent and scored 4.2 million social actions in total, while Adidas’ digital version of its TV ads generated fewer than 500,000 – suggesting that a traditional strategy may no longer be enough to reach consumers.



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