Long gone are the days when a company or brand could tightly control their image and reputation through their own carefully orchestrated advertising campaigns. Over the past years with the establishment of social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, marketing professionals and brand managers have had to learn that what they say about their brand is not nearly as powerful as what people say about it.
Consumers are in command.
They not only discuss, like or dislike and spread brand content, they also create it. Many brands have learned to come to terms with that whilst a few managed to even leverage and successfully celebrate ‘open-source branding’.
TAKING THINGS TO THE NEXT LEVEL
Now adidas is taking ‘open source’ to the next level giving consumers more influence when it comes to product creation. With a move away from standardisation and into customisation, the vision is to create the ultimate personalised product for every consumer. And we have just made the first step.
SPEEDFACTORY – where the magic happens
In Ansbach, a small town about 45 minutes away from the adidas Group HQ in Herzogenaurach, adidas is setting up a pilot SPEEDFACTORY production facility – featuring revolutionary automated production concepts that not only offer high-performance quality to consumers, but also render unique design to the product. The first half of 2016 will see the inaugural concept shoes comprising 500 pairs of running footwear hit the ground.
SPEEDFACTORY combines the design and development of sporting goods with an automated, decentralised and flexible manufacturing process. This flexibility opens doors for us to be closer to the market and to where our consumer is. Ultimately we are at the forefront of innovating our industry by expanding the boundaries for how, where and when we can manufacture our industry-leading products.
SOME CHATTER AMONGST FACTORIES
With the new SPEEDFACTORY in Ansbach as a pilot, the plan is to step by step set up similar facilities across different global locations while keeping them closely connected. This will enable information exchange between the various SPEEDFACTORIES on areas such as production, trends, product availability, etc. So, at the end of the day, we will have a shared knowledge bank to drive the future of product personalisation and customisation.
The set-up of the first SPEEDFACTORY has kicked off in Ansbach, Germany, to propel a global network of automated production which brings cutting-edge technology to cities around the world. The first 500 pairs of running shoes will help us set the scene for large-scale commercial production so each consumer can locally get what they want, when they want it, faster than ever.
THIS IS JUST THE BEGINNING…
No longer does a consumer need to wait months to jump into the latest trends. With SPEEDFACTORY, production has come to where they are, starting with Germany.
But is this already the ultimate future of production? Not even close… Our vision goes far beyond. The flexibility offered by automation and intelligent manufacturing technology opens doors to a world of possibilities. We want to get even closer to the consumers, directly interact and allow them to become a part of our brand: in-store customisation, co-creation and interactive brand experiences – this is what it takes to truly lose control and gain love.
So stay tuned for more to come!
Open Source is one of the key strategic choices to help the adidas Group in Creating the New. Open Source can take you to places that you couldn’t get to on your own. Simply put, it allows people to create with you.