So, the world went crazy over the Nike Air Yeezy II sneakers released yesterday. I could argue that the release matches if not tops the Nike Mag (Back to the Future Marty McFly) release from last year. The shoe was released in selected stores worldwide as well as few online outlets offering a raffle for one’s chance to win a pair. A raffle was pretty much the only way for the stores to keep control over the insane masses queuing, and camping in front of Nike retailers for up to weeks. Yes, plural. I personally wished to land a pair of the kicks but as the shoes were seemingly not released at my neck of the woods an online raffle was an only choice, but nnah… not with my luck. Nike did make the shoes available through NikeStore, and as a result their servers, site and pretty much everythign else was jammed for hours with everyone reloading the site every other second to make sure they are there when the shoe becomes available online. The online purchase was made available for US citizens only but that does not stop international buyers from checking the site out. People were pretty vocal about their frustration, anticipation and Nike’s website issues resulting in few rather humorous Twitter updates.
I would argue Nike is among the few brands in the world that can turn an ordinary person into a sneaker fiend camping outside a store to land a pair of limited edition kicks. For some the rationale to get the shoe was to sell it for profit on eBay. And I can’t blame anyone for that as the shoes were apparently fetching up to 90k USD prior to launch. And the last shoe to hit eBay in limited numbers (Nike Air Mag) fetched 5 figures as well. But for some the shoe is still a collector’s piece and for some a nice looking shoe to be worn with the right attire. For me it would have been the latter. It is a unique pair of shoes and I really liked the Black-Solar Red color way. But perhaps I can use this 300 USD for something else, like a new belt.
My wife asked me yesterday what’s so special about the shoes. The interesting thing is that it took me few moments to think what it is that makes this shoe so special? Limited production… Exclusivity is the key with every coveted product. The mix of throwback style and modern sneaker technology. That’s pretty important, but I would argue that many people that bought the shoe don’t either know or care about this. Design by Kanye West… It is Air Yeezy after all. But the shoe release is just one of those things that makes everybody talk. The hype created through word of mouth and clever marketing combining online and offline efforts, celebrity endorsement (naturally) and naturally a hint of mystery (price, availability etc.). A well played campaign by Nike.
Any summarizing arguments… Yes, I would still like to score a pair, so if you have a pair hanging around in size 13 US that you just don’t need. Feel free to contact me. I’ll take either colorway. Thanks!