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Nike quietly files virtual trademark. Is it entering the metaverse?

Nike quietly files virtual trademark. Is it entering the metaverse?

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Nike is reportedly entering the metaverse having filed for several new trademarks this week. According to the US Patent and Trademark Office, Nike filed applications for "Nike" and its iconic slogan "Just Do It" on 27 October. A day later, it did the same for the "Jordan" brand name as well as Air Jordan and Jumpman logos.

In the application, Nike said the trademarks will be used for "downloadable virtual goods" and "entertainment services". These include computer programmes featuring footwear, clothing, headwear, eyewear, as well as non-downloadable virtual footwear, clothing, headwear, and sports equipment.

At the same time, the company is also hiring virtual material designers to create and visualise innovative virtual material concepts using 3D tools. According to the job scope on Nike's website, the role sits in the digital product creation group which is a team focusing on spearheading the digital and virtual revolution at Nike. Nike declined to comment on MARKETING-INTERACTIVE's queries.

Nike is not new to the virtual world. In 2019, the Jordan brand teamed up with Fortnite for a crossover that involved a Fortnite skin featuring the iconic Jumpman logo. The collaboration also allowed characters to don Nike-branded sneakers. The sports brand also tied up with online game platform Roblox to celebrate Air Max Day in 2019.

(Read also: #ExplainIt: Is there a need for a chief metaverse officer?)

Nike also joins other brands that have entered the metaverse, such as Hyundai Motor. The automotive company's collaboration with Roblox aims to allow users to meet and communicate with one another and experience Hyundai Motor’s mobility offerings in the form of avatars. Similarly, Gucci also partnered Roblox to outfit Gen Z players and their characters, taking a leap of faith into the metaverse.

Meanwhile, Meta even invested US$50 million for a XR Programs and Research Fund over two years to build the metaverse responsibly. To further showcase its ambition in this scene, the tech giant also rebranded its parent company from Facebook to Meta, shifting its focus away from social media.

The metaverse erases the notion of borders and physical distance, said a Media.Monks' report titled "Making the Metaverse". As brands expand into this area, they need to consider areas such as business expansion, commercial and revenue generation, advertising and marketing, as well as media and entertainment. This also begs the question as to whether there will be a rise in individuals getting hired as chief metaverse officers.

Industry players MARKETING-INTERACTIVE previously spoke to said while the role of the chief metaverse officer might not be widely available, brands will require dedicated talents who have a deep understanding of the latest development both from the technical side and user behaviour.

Join our Digital Marketing Asia conference happening from 9 November 2021 - 25 November 2021 to learn about the upcoming trends and technologies in the world of digital. Check out the agenda here. 

Photo courtesy: 123RF

Related articles:
Analysis: How in the world do you measure ROI in the metaverse?
Metaverse for marketers: 'Ignoring it now is like ignoring social media 10 years ago'
Opinion: Play-to-earn and the metaverse from the perspective of a 90’s gamer
Facebook attributes ad decline to Apple, makes metaverse 'a major investment'

HK gaming group Animoca Brands bags US$65m funding amidst NFT and metaverse craze
Facebook sets aside US$50m to build metaverse 'responsibly'
Hyundai Motor rides metaverse wave with adventure on Roblox

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