A Peak Into The Boston Shoe Game
When we think of some of the most popular shoe brands out there today several come to mind: Nike, Adidas, New Balance, Puma, Saucony, Asics and probably a few more depending on your region and preference. But what does brand loyalty actually mean? Does it mean you only wear one brand at a time and stay true to that brand no matter what’s popular, what’s hype, or what’s fashionable? Here in Boston we are fortunate enough to be in an area that is home to several great brands not only “popular” in the city, but headquartered here as well. If you know anything about the shoe game you know where the spots are to cop the latest heat, but far fewer people know that companies like New Balance, Adidas, and even Converse, have major headquarters in Boston and the surrounding area.
As Bostonians, does brand loyalty mean that we should support these brands and wear them over what may be popular in our circles, what may appeal to our own styles, or even more importantly what we can afford? While these things are all open to opinion, what’s most important to recognize is that we live in a free country. While it may not be popular to wear one brand over another, we as consumers have every right to pick and choose what brands we support, what brands we wear, and in general how we want to present ourselves to others.
To get a better sense of what I mean let's look at what's really popular right now in pop culture: Nike and Adidas. These two brands have taken over the market and continue to grow. While Adidas has made some great strides over the last couple of years with the introduction of Boost material, making a major move by luring Kanye West (otherwise known as Yeezy, one of the biggest Icons in music away from Nike to create a sub-brand under Adidas), Nike is still the top dog. With the recent news that Amazon will soon be owned by Nike, the company's market share of the shoe and athletic wear industry will no doubt grow even more. What factors do moves like this play on Brand Loyalty? How does it influence the masses?
Aside from the numerous department stores we're all familiar with, Boston and its surrounding area is home to at least three exclusive shops that can only be found here or in a select few places. Bodega, Concepts, and Niketown Boston are familiar names to those of us versed in the sneaker culture of Boston, and can all be found in the heart of the city. Mind you, Concepts is located in Cambridge which is not a part of Boston, but word on the street is expansion is in the works. Does brand loyalty extend to these shops? Are the collaborations, exclusive merchandise that can be found in these shops, and numerous raffles, events, & apparel apart of what would be considered "Brand Loyalty"?
Styles change as time goes on, new trends pop up, fads fade away, and something new and hot catches the eye of the public. In the end, the only thing that matters is that you wear what you like. Don't let other people tell you what's cool. Do your thing. Whether it's fitting in or standing out, no one can be a better you than you. What are your thoughts on Brand Loyalty? Leave a comment below.
Sir Harry Jr. Signing Off.