In a world where the fashion industry is trying to bring attention to either luxury brands or fast fashion, you could just wear your favorite sneakers and a hoodie that will make you feel comfortable.
And somehow, the sportswear brands are come out on top. They are more relatable, and they’re always trying to connect with their audiences.
A strategy is a key element to this. This is how the brands get closer to their fans, listen to their needs and include them in new projects. And that's how PUMA's social media strategy was born.
PUMA's Social Media Strategy
1. Getting to know the PUMA brand
PUMA is a German company based in Herzogenaurach that designs and manufactures athletic footwear, apparel and accessories. It was founded in 1948, becoming a public company in 1986 when it was listed on the stock.
The brand is all about achieving greatness, being brave, confident, and passionate. And PUMA is definitely a core element in helping people succeed in whatever they put their minds to.
With the help of technology and in a century in which social media is the center of attention, PUMA found the secret to engaging with its audience and pushing the limits in sports and culture.
2. What is PUMA's social media strategy?
For years, PUMA has maintained a strong social media presence and engaged its global audience with a steady drip of quality content.
Their posts exude energy and ambition and through their marketing campaigns, they’ve managed to blend fashion and sports to create powerful, inspiring narratives.
In recent years, they’ve really turned the dial up on their social media efforts, with a clear emphasis on collaborations and influencer marketing.
By teaming up with notorious athletes and fashion stars to either create new lines of product or promote existing collections, they can easily tap into new audiences, bring fresh perspectives into their social strategy and expand their reach.
3. PUMA's social media campaigns
Everybody loves a great campaign. As you can imagine, social media campaigns are a large part the PUMA social media strategy.
Trying to find better ways to connect and collaborate with their communities, the team at PUMA has created some fantastic social media campaigns which do more than just promoting nice sneakers or new clothes.
Abigail Rogers, the current Associate Creative Director Football for Puma, has shared some insights on the hard work that was behind the campaigns created in collaboration with Neymar Jr., who joined PUMA back in 2020.
She Moves Us
Another amazing campaign is She Moves Us. This one is meant to empower women from all over the world. It’s all about confidence, style, and being a force of nature.
According to them, the PUMA Woman inspires the other women around her to get active and get with the movement - and they inspire her right back.
With this campaign, PUMA also wants to promote gender equality in sports. The brand aims to increase the visibility of female athletes in the sports world.
Perhaps one of PUMA's most powerful social media campaigns, “Forever Faster”, was launched back in 2014, featuring fashion and sports icons like Usain Bolt and Rihanna.
The name of this campaign has also become PUMA's mantra (it's even in their Instagram bio!)
Despite being 9 years old at this point, the "Forever Faster" campaign is still going strong.
How do I know this? I checked using Socialinsider's new Instagram Listening tool.
By adding the #foreverfaster hashtag to my project, I was able to unlock a lot of insights about this campaign, including posts evolution, common keywords and interests and a list of top voices in the industry who participated in this campaign.
And of course, a long collection of posts sharing this hashtag.
It became pretty clear to me that this campaign is heavily dominated by influencers, seeing as almost all posts in the last 6 months were shared by this type of content creators.
So I dug deeper to find out who they are and what exactly they're saying.
I was also curious to know what hashtags people have been using in conjuction with the campaign hashtag.
This helped me understand what other niches Puma might be targeting (e.g. trail running, marathon training etc).
4. PUMA and its competitors
In the course of more than 70 years, PUMA has made history with its impressive footwear, apparel, and accessories.
Through innovations and wonderful designs, the brand has become an essential presence in the world of sportswear.
But behind every success, there’s always hard work and a strategy that’s meant to keep the business going.
With 43 million followers across all social media platforms, it’s safe to say that the team has created a powerful marketing strategy.
In order to bring data into the game, I used Socialinsider, a social media analytics, reporting, and benchmarking tool.
With the help of Socialinsider, I discover that although most of the fans are on Facebook, the engagement is not quite as good. That’s why PUMA relies massively on Instagram and TikTok.
As a result, the most engagement comes from this platform which means that the team’s work was well received.
More than that, in order to understand where to place yourself as a brand, it’s important to take a look at what your competitors are doing.
In this case, I added the Instagram profiles of PUMA’s main competitors (Adidas, Nike, ASICS, Reebok, Under Armour) to see exactly the brand’s performance. With the Benchmarks feature, I was able to get in-depth analytics.
As you can see above, PUMA keeps its head in the game.
It’s not always about numbers, but it’s also about engaging with your audience beyond social media: sharing common beliefs and creating a powerful community is one of PUMA’s primary goals.
What’s really awesome is that an analytics tool is able to give you more insights than you might think.
5. PUMA's social media strategy on Instagram
At a quick glance and scroll through PUMA's Instagram feed, we can see it's full of posts that feature famous brand ambassadors and collaborators, such as Rihanna, Neymar Jr. and Dua Lipa.
It's obvious that, in recent years, PUMA has relied heavily on its strategic partnerships and collaborations to expand its reach, brand awareness, engagement and of course, sales.
It makes sense, then, that their most active channel - Instagram - should reflect their current priorities and content direction.
I wanted to take a peak behind the scenes and see how their content is currently performing. Here are some of the most interesting things I found:
Their most engaging hashtags come from their collaborations.
PUMA's top hashtags from the last 12 months (ranked by average engagement) comes from their most popular collaborations with Dua Lipa and Jack Grealish.
They have a 57.3% organic engagement rate per profile.
That means that over 50% of PUMA's Instagram followers interact with the content they share - which is good news for a brand account.
Their most engaging post type is carousel.
Although you're likely to find a lot of Reels on PUMA's Instagram page, the post type that generates the highest amount of engagement for them is actually carousel.
6. PUMA's social media strategy on TikTok
TikTok is PUMA's most engaging platform at the moment. Joining TikTok meant adjusting their content and tone of voice to a (generally) younger audience and tailoring their strategy to match what works on TikTok: fun and authenticity.
They seized the opportunity by highlighting their most famous collaborations (similar to Instagram), but also sharing funny content and behind-the scenes-clips.
As for their performance, here are some interesting insights I found:
Their TikTok engagement is declining, yet it's still the higher than all other channels.
Both their total engagement and engagement rate are declining compared to the previous period (November 2021 - November 2022), but they're still much higher than all of their other platforms.
Posts depicting famous brand ambassadors come out on top.
With time, PUMA has learned that promoting their famous collaborations is a recipe for success (or at least, massive engagement). So they followed this plan on TikTok, and it seems to be working wonders.
PUMA has a creative and well-thought marketing strategy, which indeed brings great results.
Being one of the world’s leading sports brands, the entire team pushes sports and culture forward all over the world.
We all know that the perfect recipe for social media success is the stuff of fairytales, while the real world focuses a lot on keeping up with everything that’s evolving.
Change is good, and when social media is constantly changing, it’s obvious that the next step comes from us.
The big brands know this by heart, so it’s good to know that you can always pay attention to what those around you are doing.
Take a look at PUMA's social media strategy to understand how to be a great creator who puts passion in everything.