Its not “This boot vs. that boot” its “This boot versus everything else in the market”
With the rise of online retailing and YouTube reviews, information about products is more readily available than at any time before. With only a few button clicks, anyone can find out almost anything about any boot on the market. Along with this, there has naturally been the rise of marketing as well. In a lot of ways this market starts directing people to not just which boots to buy, but how to go about buying them.
This doesn’t mean like teaching someone how to buy online, what I mean is that brands naturally teach us to compare certain boots to other similar boots. A good example of this would be to look at the discourse surrounding the launch of the X Ghosted. The Carbitex insert was consistently compared to the snapback effect on the Vapor Elite. Even in my own review of the boots, I compared the X Ghosted to the Morelia Neo III Beta Japan. But none of these boots exist in a vacuum and viewing the market like this can be limiting.
Part of this may be due to the way we approach buying boots. Because of marketing and the like, we ask ourselves “Which speed boot should I buy?” or “Which control boot should I buy?” instead of being more general and asking instead which boot we should buy in general. By asking the latter question, we open ourselves up to more possibilities.
When we stop limiting ourselves, we may discover boots that are better for us than when we might think we need. I often think about this when buying a boot for personal use, rather than review. I consider what am I really looking for. Of course, there are boots that I am naturally drawn towards because of past experience and that’s great way to go about looking for new boots. However, I always try and keep my mind open. By engaging in other ways of thinking, we can explore more parts of the boot market.
Here’s an illustration of this: A player has in the past always looked for and worn speed boots, but they’re getting tired of having issues with the boots feeling too tight on occasion. Going into a shop or looking online for information, they may be pushed towards getting a Puma Ultra or a New Balance Furon that both have more forgiving fits. However, if they look outside of this, they could consider a boot with a kangaroo leather upper.
Nothing exists alone. There are many examples of players, myself included, who often change what style of boots they wear from one boot to the next. But not everyone can afford to do this. That’s why its important to engage with boots outside of our normal scope of thinking. We need to engage more with what we need and what we really want, rather than letting the market and advertising push us a certain way. I think if more people were to think this way, they would be surprised by the boots they end up with.
What boots have you worn before that were outside of the norm for you? Please share this with your friends and make sure to follow me on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter!