The New adidas Brand Shrine on Fifth Avenue BOMBS!

Sometimes companies get “just too clever for their own good.” And this is one of these times. Who at adidas could have signed off on this one? And the cost of the real estate? And the concrete construction? And the inflexible steel fixtures? OUCH!

So you look at the windows—no products were on display! They are filled with large backwards and upside down type—why?. (I went to the store to look for Christmas presents!)

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The entrance is a low ceiling (duck!) tunnel to a stadium—all part of adidas’ “stadium retail concept” that is inspired by the tunnel that athletes walk through to enter the playing field. (I’m not feeling like a jock yet—but maybe I’ll catch the feeling soon?)

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Then I burst into a room with a big screen background with—I don’t know what the heck they are? And why are those funny-looking white and black shoes hanging in the air?

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The next thought that comes to mind is…”dull”—I guess the faux locker rooms are the sales areas? Followed by the thought “why did they lower the ceiling in a low-ceiling building?”

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Product display is dismaying—and a step backward—even though there are areas called “The Track” and “The Turf” to test your selected products.

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Of course you’ve got it by now! Enter the stadium—go through narrow places built with industrial materials—line up in guardrails (like ticket lines)—and “let’s throw stadium benches in the mezzanine level” (sales per square foot = $0). All this adds up to DISASTER!

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And it does get worse! Someone read that food was the hot new trend in retail stores—right? Right! So let’s add some food—like nutrition products? OMG! This? In North America’s most sophisticated food city? (Think Eataly!)

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Solution: Dynamite! Then start all over!!

adidas sought to create a brand emotional connection, but missed. On the other hand, in our not too humble opinion, Nike’s new store has hit the target…more to come on this shortly.