Who Really Drives the Sneaker and Streetwear Industry?

Who Really Drives the Sneaker and Streetwear Industry?


For those not in the know, the sneaker and streetwear industries may seem fairly straightforward, no different to any other clothing industry. Little do they know, that these industries generate billions of dollars and are heavily driven by a booming resell market. Before we get stuck in, allow us to explain just how the streetwear and sneaker industries work in the modern world.

Brands and retailers have identified genius marketing strategies over recent years which has catapulted the industry to new heights. You may have heard the saying ‘supply and demand’, this refers to the amount of goods that are available in contrast to how many people wish to purchase the goods. The streetwear and sneaker industries generate excitement and what we like to call ‘hype’ for upcoming releases to maximise demand. In return they offer very little supply, meaning that the products are incredibly difficult to get your hands on. With so many people wanting the same product, eventually it will lead to individuals reselling the product for a hefty premium above the price they paid at retail. From here on it is a snowball effect, not only do we have individuals wanting to purchase almost every release for their own use, but we have millions of people across the globe seeking to cash in on some profit in the resell market. As a result, brands and retailers not only sell out an almost all products, but have tremendous exposure and demand.


So what makes a product so hyped? Simply put, brands such as Nike and Adidas owe a lot of their success to collaborations with celebrity icons and endorsements. It’s a marketing tool which has been proven for decades, but none revolutionised the game like Nike and Michael Jordan. The success here is evident to see and in recent years we have seen modern day success stories close the gap on Jordan with collaborations with fashion icon’s such as Travis Scott, Kanye West, Virgil Abloh and Jerry Lorenzo. Honourable mentions go out to Ronnie Feig, Pharrell, Sean Weatherspoon, A$AP Rocky, Nigo, Chris Gibbs and more.

The top 4 mentioned above have each produced their own collaborative labels, Cactus Jack, Yeezy, Off-White and Fear of God. These have all gained vast global popularity and success, generating hype for almost anything they touch. Seriously, in a collab with McDonald’s, Travis Scott released a pillow in the shape of a chicken nugget and it sold out instantly with aftermarket resell value! To the untrained eye, it may come across that it’s all a gimmick and that people buy into their products as they are a fan of the given celebrity. Truth be told, all of these ‘hype guys’ are serious creative geniuses and have studied the fashion industry intensively. They have pioneered new waves in street fashion and their innovative products have revolutionised the scene. Truth be told, they have darn right deserved all of the attention and hype surrounding their products. For it is these creative individuals alongside their respective brands that drive the current industries and influence the community in style and fashion.


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