Something as simple as creating a subsite to showcase upcoming releases and then turning that website into an app has been a major reason for the Swoosh’s success and direct acceleration to consumers. As Nike develops their sneakers and develops a ton of kicks that help create a cohesive flow of content about the brand, they provide updates. Some of these updates are coming in the form of sneaker leaks a year after they were released. Nike uses the SNRKS desktop and app to announce upcoming drops and to start discussing the next season to stay in the minds of the consumer.
SNKRS, the app and the launch page on Nike.com allow for a repetitive process that generates a considerable amount of revenue for any site wishing to share information on upcoming Nike / Jordan Brand drops. It doesn’t matter that a date can be pushed back. Nike invites media to upload high quality images from Nike News and SNKRS for sharing. Nike delivers the narrative or story behind the shoe and while this gives media sites an almost cookie-cutter approach to sneaker news, SNKRS becomes the source of the multitude of media and by default these media become an extension of Nike.
Although I call the strategy simple, the reality is that small brands don’t have the capacity to create at the same level. They have a different strategy, but it seems those on the inside can’t quite figure out how to create a cohesive flow of storytelling / content leaving their websites static. Consider Allbirds’ upcoming IPO and the billion dollar valuation. Nike has been around for much longer and the brand can draw on a heritage catalog both in terms of performance and lifestyle. Allbirds is a company with around 18 SKUs in total. These SKUs are redundant in terms of appearance, materials and style. Allbirds has had a couple of surprise collaborations, but these limited editions no longer exist on the site; not even as content which is an error. While Allbirds can’t provide a story for 18 SKUs, there is much more they can do to engage the consumer.
SNKRS, quite interesting on the desktop, only provides pictures and explanations of upcoming versions. The site functions as a funnel to the app with “Notify Me” buttons where the visitor can remember when the sneakers were released. What is interesting about the SNKRS office is that it is a repository of information on previous versions. Nike does not remove the shoes after they have been dropped. The site offers a Feed – In stock – Coming soon menu where you can learn about old sneakers and buy sneakers in inventory and get the release date. adidas is one of the few sites that has followed this simple strategy with its Release Dates page: https://www.adidas.com/us/release-dates
The simple SNKRS strategy is a template for any business, not just sneaker brands. More and more companies are starting to implement the tactic and that’s a good thing.