In today’s mail I received a nice 28 page, full-color brochure from Dick’s Sporting Goods touting their basketball gear. There is one major problem with Dick’s new basketball brochure: not one female is represented on its pages. Oh, there are young men, teenage boys and yes, even younger boys. Sorry, middle-aged and older men, but apparently you don’t play ball either. But, apparently Dick’s Sporting Goods also does not believe that girls and women play basketball. No one on their marketing/communications team has ever heard of the Women’s National Basketball Assocation, either. Oh wait, there are women in the brochure: background crowd in the stand and cheerleaders. That earns them an F for effort.
Female athletes deserve better.
I checked the brochure three times because I wanted to make sure that I was not mistaken. Surely, this is a 2014 brochure and not something from the “olden days.” Surely, the marketing/communication gurus at Dick’s who ask me everything from my zip code to my shopping preferences know who their market is. Surely, they have heard that yes, women do play sports traditionally dominated by men and in many cases, are better athletes.
The kicker on the brochure? It was addressed to me – clearly someone with a female name. And why was that? Not because I am some cool athlete, but because I make these kinds of purchasing decisions. I get the store “discount” card so that we get coupons, discounts on purchases, invites to special events, etc. Oh wait, there was a nod to breast cancer awareness month on the vanity link www.dickssportingoods.com/basketball. I suppose that is what the womenfolk should be grateful for – that this retailer is recognizing our boobs and the fact that we may lose one to breast cancer.
Female athletes deserve better than to be ignored by Dick’s Sporting Goods. If you love a female athlete, let Dick’s know that this is not acceptable.