If you’re an avid follower of sneaker culture you will notice that the hype has reached insane levels in the past year. From the birth of the collaboration between Nike and Virgil Abloh to the Winner of the Nike On Air competition, Sean Wotherspoon. It has become increasingly difficult to get your hands on your coveted sneakers. Back in the day, if you wanted it badly enough, a simple overnight camp at a store could guarantee you a pair. However, with demand hugely outweighing supply, tastes becoming more similar across the community, and social media becoming instrumental as a taste-maker, to maintain order, stores are having to change the way they do releases.
Ofcourse we are already used to online and instore raffles from the likes of END and SNS, and let’s be honest we’re no stranger to those ‘L’ emails or “sorry better luck next time”. While other retailers continue to follow suit and run all hyped releases as raffles, because first come first served just doesn’t work anymore; one store has taking this challenging demand as an opportunity to be innovative and bring the sneaker community together.
Offspring, a sneaker store owned by Office, has both standalone and concession stores within Selfridges. Since the start of last year, the store has trialled various ways to make drops more exciting, and we’re here for it! Straying away from the status quo, the brand has used its popular Instagram account to increase interest and keep sneaker lovers on their toes (or fingers) while taking a no-nonsense approach against resellers.
When the Off-white x Nike 10 were released, Offspring opened them up to the community as an event, via Eventbrite. Allowing customers to reserve time slots to come and purchase one of The 10. While this was a hit, there were some points raised that it was not inclusive for those who lived outside of London and offered little notice of the drop. Offspring welcomed this feedback and introduced the Backdoor competition (a play on accusations that kicks were being handed out to people behind closed doors) which it is constantly improving.
The Backdoor competition allows the store to select winners of popular releases by choosing followers who comment under a ‘Backdoor’ post. Winners are then able to collect the shoe from the store within a week’s window. All they ask for is for witty one-liners in relation to the post. Due to its increasing popularity, they have now capped the time which followers have to respond to the initial post, and in recent weeks the store surprised its followers by selecting winners of the un-released 2018 Off-White Nike Presto to individuals who simply commented on an Instagram post.
With these sneakers being limited, undoubtedly there will be disappointment but the integrity and intent of the store cannot be questioned, by selecting individuals who probably never thought they’d be in with a chance, and publicly displaying the winners (unlike other raffles). Some may say all this is done to drive traffic to their page, to which we say, who cares! It’s got sneaker heads talking, it’s got us reading hilarious Instagram comments and most importantly it’s getting kicks into the hands of those who value them.
We look forward to seeing how else this store can be creative with its releases but one thing is for sure, the Wins are just as real as the Losses, but you have to be in it to win it; trust us when we say, it’s worth it (thanks Offspring)! Times have changed and Offspring is evolving with it, as they remain dedicated to bringing heat to the masses.