The 1997 endorsement deal between “His Airness,” Michael Jordan and Nike created the subsidiary company Air Jordan. Air Jordan has come to be known as one of the most well-known names in athletic shoe and athletic wear. Every release or re-release of a Jordan shoe has “sneaker lovers”, “basketball players” and “MJ fans” alike waiting in massive lines hoping to get their hands on the next perfectly wrapped gift that Air Jordan has to offer. More often than not, customers begin waiting in line 2 days before the newest Air Jordan launch. The hype for the newest sneakers usually starts months in advance with the perfectly timed ‘leak” of a photo and a quote or two from “His Airness” himself. The “sneakerhead bloggers” can’t resist the temptation and the mayhem begins.
Recently the company re released the most popular worn Jordan shoe, the Air Jordan XI Concords; Jordan himself wore a pair for the entire 1995-96 regular season – the 72-win season. When these shoes hit stores just before Christmas of 2011, there was media coverage of people being trampled, arrested and assaulted as they tried to garner a pair of Air Jordan’s latest shoe. In some instances police were asked to escort the new Air Jordan owners to their cars to ensure safety.
For the Air Jordan brand, social media presence is not a strong suit. They only have a following of 1.4 million people through their Facebook, Twitter and YouTube pages combined. But by releasing a news release and leaking photos of the newest shoe, Air Jordan captures the attention of countless “sneaker bloggers” across the nation. These bloggers create the hype that makes Air Jordan’s the hottest craze or the must-have buy for sneaker fanatics. Pricing a pair of sneakers at $180 and only releasing a certain number in different cities, creates an exclusivity that makes people want to stand in line for days on end, to be the first to get a pair.
The marketing team at Air Jordan has a mystical advertising plan as they have cornered a market, in what seems to be, an effortless manner. Although they have created modern social media outlets, the information garnered by the targeted public is through a non-traditional method. By not conforming to current social media processes and still being successful, they are just as legendary as the man whose name adorns the brand.