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Report Finds Nike has “Most Intimate” Relationship with Consumers

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Nike isn’t just the largest sneaker brand by the numbers, it’s also the one consumers feel the closest with, a new study finds.

In a report by MBLM, a marketing company which measures “brand intimacy”, Nike ranked as the “most intimate” apparel brand, followed by Levi’s and fast-growing rival Under Armour. Rounding out the top 10 were Adidas, Louis Vuitton, H&M, Puma, Express, The North Face and Banana Republic. Among 18-34 year-olds, Nike and Under Armour were the two most intimate apparel brands.

Brand intimacy is defined by MBLM as “an essential relationship between a person and brand that transcends usage, purchase, and loyalty”. According to the report, intimate brands perform better than those that don’t foster close ties with customers.

Apparel as a whole, however, scored poorly in terms of creating “intimate” relationships with consumers, ranking second to last among all industries in MBLM’s annual report. Travel and leisure was the only industry ranking lower.

“Apparel had a weak performance, compared to most of the other industries that we analyzed,” said Mario Natarelli, MBLM managing partner. “This is surprising given the emotional connection people typically have with fashion brands. It appears these brands have a powerful opportunity to build stronger bonds with customers.”

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