On this week's episode of Full Size Run, the crew sat down with former Nike and Jordan Brand designer Jason Mayden to discuss some of his past projects and the current state of the sneaker industry. Mayden, responsible for shoes like the Air Jordan 2009 and the Air Monarch, didn't shy away from the topic of Adidas' recent move past his former employer in the footwear market.
When asked about Adidas' rise in terms of both financial success and popular perception, Mayden cited a lifestyle shift that occurred long before the 3-Stripes became cool to wear again.
"I think there was a shift in how the generation wanted to be viewed and it happened about 10 years ago," said Mayden. "So, the moment the mobile device became ubiquitous and most people had smart phones, you now leveled the playing field. So, information was no longer a currency. Because remember back when Jordan Brand was really driving the culture, if you didn't know, you didn't know. So, you could control the value because you could control the info."
"Now that the playing field is leveled, enters personalities that are associated with Adidas that now say the creative has the power. You don't have to be an athlete to be important. Like you can be King Bach and have a billion followers. You can just be a Fit Tea model on Instagram and have a billion. And so the kid who's growing up is like 'So, wait, I don't have to have a jumpshot to be well known? Well, cool, I'm just going to be well dressed. I'm going to be creative.'"
Mayden believes that Adidas' ability to recognize this trend and capitalize on it early is paying off for the brand now, hence a 35 percent boost in sales through the first 8 months of the year.
In the rest of the interview, Mayden discusses working one-on-one with Michael Jordan, his hand in delivering the Air Monarch to dads everywhere and his new Super Heroic kids' footwear company. You can catch new, uncut episodes of Full Size Run live on Facebook every Wednesday.