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"Run Your Way" For Brand Success: A New Balance Perspective On Marketing The secret to success is to free brands from a one-dimensional approach to marketing, because, just as there is no one right way to run, there is no singular approach to developing a brand.

By Stuart Henwood

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New Balance

In today's complex market where consumers are bombarded with thousands of messages every day, generating cut through is critical. While the endorsement of a well-chosen ambassador can have a positive brand association, we must not forget about the importance of fostering authentic connections with and contributing real value to the end audience.

While securing celebrity endorsement may drive clicks, prioritizing inclusive brand marketing and long-term thinking that takes into consideration the needs and aspirations of your end audience can help play a key role in helping unlock sustainable brand loyalty, as well as to positively contribute to meaningful conversations. Through this inclusive marketing approach, brands can opt for traditional marketing tactics and earn connections with their customers, rather than merely facilitating transactions.

We exemplified this approach at New Balance, recently with our "Run Your Way" campaign, which created a global conversation celebrating movement of every type, by removing running stereotypes, and promoting a more inclusive and positive view of running. More than a creative campaign, we continue to drive conversations across the Middle East through pop-up experiences with regional ambassadors, influencers, and consumers woven into the narrative.

Related: Four Steps To Build A Successful Digital Marketing Campaign In The UAE

Our recent "Run Your Way" pop-up in Dubai celebrated the launch of our newest running shoes, offering product demonstrations to everyday customers, while also celebrating the inspiring journey of New Balance's global ambassador, Ayah El-Hafez. The week-long experience also honored the community by offering free organized runs with professional trainers. At the end of the day, "Run Your Way" isn't about merely celebrating achieved runners, or exclusively getting beginners into running- it is about celebrating the uniqueness of our customers.

In the world of running, where originality flourishes, brands need to acknowledge and value the distinct traits, preferences, and backgrounds of their customers. In other words, inclusivity goes beyond the product or service provided; rather, it recognizes and values each customer's individuality. That is why our commitment to the MENA region extends far beyond the walls of our stores, brand ambassadors, and partnership agreements. Through our New Balance Run Club (NBRC) community events that foster an inclusive running culture, New Balance aims to play its role within the wider region by working alongside our partners and stakeholders to celebrate physical activity and movement in all its forms.

The secret to success is therefore to free brands from a one-dimensional approach to marketing, because, just as there is no one right way to run, there is no singular approach to developing a brand. Campaigns built around this approach will prove to be vital in a cluttered digital universe, where resonating with customers is becoming more and more vital every day. Just like New Balance celebrates runners of all backgrounds and skill levels, brands can find their essence, celebrate it, and inspire and engage with their customers, rather than only broadcasting at them.

Related: Seven Digital Marketing Mistakes UAE Brands Make (And How To Fix Them)

Stuart Henwood is the Regional General Manager for the Middle East, Africa, and India at New Balance.


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