I fell in love with Shaquille O’Neal years ago. He signed a deal to have a sneaker named after him that would be less than 50.00. At the time, Jordans were running for at least twice that. The Shaq shoe wasn’t the most popular. And the fact that they were sold in Kmart and Walmart didn’t help matters.
But plenty of young children with little money were able to connect to a popular basketball player by wearing his shoe. I loved Shaq for that.
The urban fashion world desperately needs someone like Shaquille right now. And it won’t be Lebron James.
It was announced this week that Lebron’s namesake sneaker is crossing the $300.00 barrier. The kicks will cost a whopping $315.00. I think Lebron has a personal responsibility to keep the price of his shoe realistic. I know it’s a free market society and money talks. But is there ever an end?
The thing is, the sneakers will sell. And as long as their selling at 315.00, Nike will have reason to sell them for that price. If the price goes up to 500.00 and people stop buying them, then they will have surpassed their threshold and they’ll bring the price down. It’s all about supply and demand.
Even thought we live in a capitalist society, I still think there should be some thought given to your target audience. Many of the young people who will salivate over this shoe will simply not be able to afford them. Some would argue that there are a lot of things that are aspirational and this is just part of life. This is true. But not many of those things is endorsed by a public figure with a very public persona.
Maybe I’m just getting old. When I was in high school in the late 80s, the hottest shoe you could rock were a pair of 90.00 Filas. And people got robbed for them all the time.
So maybe this is just a sign of the times. A pair of 90.00 Filas has morphed into a pair of 315.00 sneakers with sensors that tell you how far you leap on the court.
I accept it. But I don’t have to like it.
Dear readers. What’s your price threshold for a pair of shoes? Would you pay this much money for any child in your life to have this shoe? I’d love to hear from you!