With media hype over long lines, campouts, and the occasional riot, Nike and its retail partners have in recent months attempted to become more aware and more mindful of the potential for violence in heavily sought after Air Jordan retro product.
The biggest sneaker retail change pushed all major Nike launch product not just to Midnight as it had been for more than a decade, but to also release no earlier than 8 a.m. on Saturdays, henceforth.
Following up on the distro roll out timing, Swoosh selling doors have still needed to work another strategy to keep crowds from becoming disorderly and generally breaking the peace. One of the current allocation trends on the independent shop level and now exemplified on the largest scale for the first time with Foot Locker stores, is the raffle.
This official rules sheet for the “Foot Locker Jordan 6/7 ‘Gold Medal‘ Pack Sweepstakes” were printed out and spread among these select locations selling the $350 “Golden Moments” double-pack of Jordan Brand shoes on Saturday. It represents Foot Locker’s initial nationwide organized foray into testing out an alternate platform for furnishing shoes aside from the “first come, first served” model which has come under fire and scrutiny again for the aforementioned long lines, campouts, and the occasional riot.
Is this a long term measure? Or first step in a new retail distribution system?
Aside from all the speculation, the other thing I wonder is will the potential lack of transparency in the selection process upset customers in the long term? What measures are in place for store employees not to magically “pick” friends to win the opportunity at desired Jordan product every chance, or stuffing the ticket ballot boxes when no one’s looking?
It’s easy to see a warm body on a cold cement floor sitting in line outside to purchase a pair of shoes. As release strategies go more internal and more digital, that visually verified public process looks like it’s starting to become extinct.