×

Under Armour: Putting Thoughts Back "Into The Box"

Every time Under Armour announces its earnings, they get pounded for the same thing: high marketing costs.

Wall Street is obsessed with that. Personally, I think it’s overblown. They’re a growing company that’s now going head-to-head with Nike . Couple that with the fact that the marketing costs aren’t necessarily going up as much as they are merely being shifted. The costs were front loaded this year to make way for Under Armour’s biggest initiative yet--getting into the cross training market.

I got my shoes the day before they hit stores and I’ll tell you this. If I’m an investor, I’m more focused on the box strategy that the shoes themselves.

Check out the image of the box.

Under Armour Shoe Box
Under Armour Shoe Box
Under Armour Shoe Box


Check out the image of the box.

Under Armour Shoe Box
Under Armour Shoe Box
Under Armour Shoe Box



You see, despite the impression of these high marketing costs, the folks at Under Armour decided that it was worth it to put the shoes in one of the coolest shoe boxes ever made. It has a see through top so consumers can look at the shoes. When the shoes are taken off the box bottom, consumers will find this great point of purchase display that will try to make the sale to them. Which of the three UA shoes are right for you?

"I said to our creative team, 'In order to go through with this we better love this because of the bottom line cost,’” said Under Armour Senior VP of Brand, Steve Battista. “And everyone was emphatic that this was important to the whole strategic vision that every box would be its own point of purchase display."

This is the great thinking that got Under Armour to where it is today. Many of the stores where shoes are sold are self service. So the folks at Under Armour realized that they needed to work harder to help sell the shoes to the consumers through the box.

Battista wouldn’t disclose the cost of the boxes, but said it would only be for used for the launch of these shoes and roughly costs as much as a week full of Under Armour TV commercials.

It’s amazing to me that a company that has barely been in the shoe market could dream up something like this. It’s a great idea. Now let's see if it works.

FYI: The box was made by Paccess Packaging which has also done work for Nike.

Questions? Comments? SportsBiz@cnbc.com