Usually, the only thing that drops at a concert is the beat. Nike changed that last week when a special edition sneaker dropped exclusively for Kendrick Lamar fans attending the TDE Championship Tour at The Forum in Inglewood as part of a push toward interactive show buying.
The shoe hegemon has long been famous for anticipated releases, long lines, and marketing campaigns that turn most other brands green with envy. In conjunction with the SNKRS app, the brand decided to engage with its fans in a way it hadn’t before, to tap into this obsessive culture of sneakerheads, fashion blogs, and brand loyalty. Think of it as Pokemon Go, but for the latest LeBrons: an interactive altered reality experience.
“The whole thinking of what we focus on here is the idea of building emotional experience that build energy in a secret community,” explains Ron Faris the head of s23NYC Digital Studio, named for its spot on 23rd Street in New York.
Standing on a line waiting for Jordans may be a unique experience, but it’s something anyone can do. There’s something performative about it, about saying you had it first, but anyone can “have it first” if they know when the shoe drops and where to buy them.
Faris wanted sneakerheads to have a more personal experience, something more interactive that involved work beyond finding the nearest store.