Shortnotice, which was part of a Microsoft Ventures‘ accelerator program in the summer of 2014, hasn’t been able to grow past around 3,800 registered users. While Nijhawan assured me the app would get an update in September and that the team had planned an exciting marketing campaign featuring Memphis Grizzlies player and NCAA Champion Russ Smith, the app’s unwieldiness could make user retention and acquisition difficult. Shortnotice is centered on text-based input and a fatigued interface, and as Barillas’ team noted early on, an enticing user experience and visual interaction signage is critical.
Q: You just launched your signature shoe line. Tell us about it? Klay Thompson: It’s exciting. I signed with Anta this fall, and we just released my signature shoe. I’m really excited to work with them—they give me a lot of input on the stuff that I design, so I’m just trying to develop that side of me.
Tom Brady won another Super Bowl. Stephen Curry won an MVP and an NBA title. Jordan Spieth won the Masters and the U.S. Open. Misty Copeland became the first African-American to become a principal dancer at a major ballet company. It has been a big year for Under Armour’s most high-profile spokespeople, and the company this week will start to roll out its first major brand campaign featuring all of them. It’s called “Rule Yourself,” and the idea summons Malcolm Gladwell’s theory that it takes 10,000 hours of practice at something to be the best.
Although direct sales from Brady, Curry, Spieth and Copeland are relatively small in the scheme of things, the momentum is palpable. Five years ago, Nike did 19 times the business Under Armour did. In 2015, that lead is expected to be cut to eight times. Footwear sales, most recently on the back of Curry’s first signature shoe, has grown by 40 percent for each of the past four quarters, while its total golf business has doubled in the past two years.
And Curry’s list of obligations run long: In addition to endorsement deals with Degree and Under Armour, the Golden State Warriors star also has contracts with Express, Muscle Milk, State Farm and JBL.
Curry, meanwhile, is trying his hand at the Bay Area’s biggest industry. He’s currently working to develop a social media app that would facilitate better engagement between sports stars, celebrities, and their fans. “That’s the kind of stuff I’ve started to get my hands into a little more,” says Curry, who feels that current social networks like Facebook and Twitter have limitations when it comes to managing that celebrity-fan relationship. “As an athlete in that space, I think there’s ways to make it better.”