Written by Matt Welty (@MatthewJWelty)
This Black Friday wasn't just about trying to score a 70-inch TV for under $100. There were more than 20 hyped sneaker releases, and heads had to choose which pair they were going to hunt down, or have a strategic plan on how to obtain everything their sneaker-loving hearts desired.
Among this year's hottest releases: Ronnie Fieg collaborated with New Balance on a pair of 1600s, Jordan dropped an "Oreo" pair of Air Jordan Vs, DJ Clark Kent continued his 112 theme with three pairs of Nike SBs, Frank the Butcher teamed up with Reebok, size? had people going international on two archival pairs of Nike runners, and there were plenty of general releases to whet someone's sneaker thirst.
But was it too much?
Black Friday is a great day to kick back with the family in the suburbs before going back to the rigors of city life. It's also a time to awe at the crazy people at the Apple Store fighting over the last Macbook.
But for sneakerheads, it's become a great tradition of buying an edited selection the year's top releases. Just think how dope it was to cop a pair of Air Jordan "Black Cement" IIIs or DJ Clark Kent-designed Air Force 1s, and have that memorable Black Friday experience.
Having this many releases forces someone to pick and choose what they can get in a short window of time. If five of the year's best releases come out on the same day, it forces everyone to pay resale prices for sneakers that could have been had at retail.
Brands should treat Black Friday like the NBA All-Star Game where only the best sneakers make an appearance.
Flight Club already has a full-size run of the Air Jordan "Oreo" Vs, and eBay is chock-full of Fieg's New Balances—which have a going price of around $300 for the $175 sneaker. Resellers know that people aren't going to be able to buy all of the sneakers at once.
People shouldn't have to wade through a handful of mediocre sneaker releases. Black Friday should be about brands dropping the best sneakers of the year.
There's no room for sneakers that aren't going to sell out that day. Brands should treat Black Friday like the NBA All-Star Game where only the best sneakers make an appearance. If too many sneakers drop on Black Friday, it loses that special nostalgia. The day becomes just like any other Saturday and there are plenty of other weekends to release cool but obtainable sneakers.
The brands, however, are playing things smart. They know that people will miss out on certain sneakers, but are in a buying mentality. If people can't get their hands on a pair of Jordans, they'll likely purchase some Kevin Durants. This way, everyone leaves satisfied: The store made its sale, the brand made money, and the buyer doesn't feel like the brands are making sneakers unattainable.
But certain shoppers don't want to settle. They don't want to go home with a second-place sneaker trophy. But they also don't want to pay 75 percent more than a sneaker's retail price, either.
A hot sneaker doesn't need to be attached to Black Friday in order for it sell. If the sneakers are good, there shouldn't be any trepidation to sell them all on one day.
What's wrong with dropping them on Saturday after Thanksgiving, so everyone has the chance to bug out at their local Best Buy and purchase an Xbox? Choosing a day when people are full with turkey, stuffing, and are hungover makes it hard for heads to consciously think about retail decisions. Especially something as important as which hyped sneakers to buy.