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Author Topic: Men's classic gone from vibram's site??  (Read 3286 times)
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Zafur
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« Reply #30 on: July 12, 2012, 12:44:28 PM »

Honestly, I had not heard of any of the authorized retailers listed on this site until... I visited this site. (Perhaps except City Sports?) I was never big on shoes until I heard about VFFs and how a lot of cushion is bad, etcetc. Honestly I just got whatever was cheap, looked decent, and had a large enough toebox at Payless or Footlocker, etc once every two years or so.
(Wide toe splay+ being a girl with slightly masculine tastes at times including aversion to showing off toes/feet... Shoe purchases would take around an hour when I just want to spend maybe 20 minutes. I try to minimize them.)

It appears the closest REI to me is in Manhattan. About a 40 minute transit.
This is probably why I still only have one pair, which was ordered from an online sale lol. No bother going to a store with unknown stock of a niche product.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2012, 03:57:23 PM by Zafur » Logged
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« Reply #30 on: July 12, 2012, 12:44:28 PM »

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armadillo76
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« Reply #31 on: July 12, 2012, 02:55:36 PM »

I think the biggest thing about marketing VFF in any store but especially a big box store is education. The EMS (Eastern Mountain Sports, mostly in NH) I got my first pair of VFF at has shoe gurus and I happened to be fitted by one. He also owned VFF so knew how they go and the break in and fit and that made a huge difference. My second pair was at the same store but the kid didn't really know how they fit and I was educating him.
Now imagine a typical minimum wage kid at a Dick's Sporting Goods? Not a pretty picture. And they have more than just Vibram to sell so they may well poo poo VFF and push some other brand they have a lot of. I would kind of like to see more Vibram shops or maybe they could partner with another store and make a store within a store sort of thing?
Dunno. I have bought more of my 11 pairs (or is it 12?) online for price and convenience but it's nicer to get to try them on first (since different styles can often be different fit).
My 2 cents, AndyB, NH.
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« Reply #32 on: July 12, 2012, 03:18:45 PM »

I tried on KomodoSport LS at an REI store, not with intent to buy but just to determine my proper size  Wink , and the salesperson used all the usual catch phrases and lingo to try to drive home the sale.  Once I offered up how many pair of these that I currently owned, he backed off into his little corner and just checked on me periodically to see if I needed a different size.  He quickly realized I knew more about the shoes than he did and that he was not going to sell me on anything I did not intend to buy.  My point being that you are going to find uneducated salespeople, no matter where you shop.  At my local small town mom and pop shop that carries VFFs, there is one sales guy that wears them and is actually quite knowledgeable about them.  If you get anyone else to assist you, all they say is they are cool and that so and so, the other salesperson, wears them.  Just because you have to be an authorized Vibram retailer does not mean that everyone selling the shoes will be knowledgeable.  
« Last Edit: July 12, 2012, 03:47:21 PM by Mr. Leigh » Logged

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Just never forget to be dexterous and deft. 
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« Reply #33 on: July 12, 2012, 09:47:57 PM »

Good point mr leigh haha, the last time I was in REI I heard the sales lady attempting to explain the differences between the sprint and the trek sport...and he best way of explaining it was that it was "vibrams 4 wheel drive model" and I just shook my head. All most sales people know are the very basics, like with most retail shops.

This is an interesting thread/discussion. I agree that vibram should at least get a few models out to places like dicks and sporting goods. And I also agree that vibram cant cave in too much because they do have to still stick to their brand, which is a higher end higher quality product. But even at places like dicks and sports athourity they have a wall/display of more expensive shoes where the sales guy still actually brings out. Vibram could still stick somewhat closley to their brand if they went that way, and hopefully get more recognission.
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« Reply #33 on: July 12, 2012, 09:47:57 PM »

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JustinB
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« Reply #34 on: July 13, 2012, 09:54:58 AM »

Good point mr leigh haha, the last time I was in REI I heard the sales lady attempting to explain the differences between the sprint and the trek sport...and he best way of explaining it was that it was "vibrams 4 wheel drive model" and I just shook my head. All most sales people know are the very basics, like with most retail shops.

This is an interesting thread/discussion. I agree that vibram should at least get a few models out to places like dicks and sporting goods. And I also agree that vibram cant cave in too much because they do have to still stick to their brand, which is a higher end higher quality product. But even at places like dicks and sports athourity they have a wall/display of more expensive shoes where the sales guy still actually brings out. Vibram could still stick somewhat closley to their brand if they went that way, and hopefully get more recognission.

I think this is it completely.  Take a page out of Nike and Adidas.  You get the basics in the big name retailers, but you have to go to a sports store to get the higher end models, and even more specialized sneaker shops or online to get the ultra elite models.   You could push the TrekSports, new classics, and a bikila LS to shops like Dicks, sports authority, modells.  then keep models like teh KSO trek, classics, sprints, speeds, and spyridons at REI and other bigger shops they are in now.  Then the more rare models and/or full product line would be available at the small outlets, vibram stores, and online.
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« Reply #35 on: July 13, 2012, 03:30:28 PM »

You forgot the KSO! That's the one that needs to be at the mainstream locations!  Tongue

But I do generally agree with you on the strategy. However, part of me worries about these being sold by and to people who know nothing about them. That will lead to injuries, and injuries will lead to a bad reputation for vffs among the people who know the injured users.
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« Reply #36 on: July 13, 2012, 03:45:17 PM »

You forgot the KSO! That's the one that needs to be at the mainstream locations!  Tongue

But I do generally agree with you on the strategy. However, part of me worries about these being sold by and to people who know nothing about them. That will lead to injuries, and injuries will lead to a bad reputation for vffs among the people who know the injured users.

Not much different than if the average Joe consumer does not do his homework or even bother to learn about minimalist footwear and then buys a pair on line from REI, Citysports, etc.  The only major difference in the two scenarios is that the consumer had to somehow hear bout VFFs in order to seek them out, even if they did not bother to learn what they were all about.  If they were mainstream, you might get a few more uneducated consumers buying them as impulse buys, but in all instances I think Vibram includes enough literature to at least CYA for themselves.
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So be sure when you step.
Step with care and great tact and remember that Life's a Great Balancing Act.
Just never forget to be dexterous and deft. 
And never mix up your right foot and your left.

Oh, the Places You'll Go! by Dr. Suess
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« Reply #37 on: July 13, 2012, 04:21:22 PM »

While I agree on having casual models at the more mainstream stores, I think classics/sprint (at least female) and speeds belong there too. (Don't really know if the original classics are that unappealing in comparison?)The first to because they cater to the sandal market, while the second looks a lot more like a typical sneaker, so it might push sales more easily for people not wanting the water shoe look.
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« Reply #38 on: July 14, 2012, 09:02:51 PM »

It's official: The Classics and Sprints will no loger be sold in the VFF USA site. This was posted on the VFF Facebook page on July 9:

Andrew Harrison
Hey, have you stopped making the Classics for men? Sad
Like   July 8 at 6:52pm near Vancouver, British Columbia
John Sparks likes this.
Bryan Ball They don't sell it on the website but REI and other stores still sell them
July 8 at 7:38pm via mobile Like
Andrew Harrison Thanks Bryan. I will add that Vibram did show them on their site within the past month or even two weeks ago.
July 8 at 7:40pm Like
Jimmy Nguyen The website is more of a storefront for what's in stock. If they're out of a model, it disappears. Which is a shame, because most of us go there looking for information...
July 8 at 10:11pm Like
Vibram FiveFingers Andrew - Thanks for reaching out. We will no longer be carrying the Classic on our US website. Generally speaking if a style is out of stock, it will appear on the site, with sizes greyed out.

If it is something that is either being discontinued, or will no longer be sold on our .com site, the style / colorway will be removed completely. Sorry for any inconvenience and we hope this helps!

July 9 at 9:19am Like
Jimmy Nguyen What about the Sprints? Are those being phased out too?
July 9 at 9:21am Like
Vibram FiveFingers We will not be carrying them for men anymore, and the women's have only one color remaining - on our site. There are plenty still available through authorized retailers and their online platforms.
July 9 at 9:37am Like
Vibram FiveFingers Two colors remaining for women**
July 9 at 9:37am Like
Andrew Harrison I'm not happy about this news, but it is what it is:/ Thanks for the painful truth:)
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CincoDeos
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« Reply #39 on: July 15, 2012, 04:56:49 AM »

The purple one on the bottom right corner looks like something classic to me.

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« Reply #40 on: July 16, 2012, 09:57:54 AM »

Looks like a ballet spin on a sprint.  Maybe a remake to something more designed for casual use.
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« Reply #41 on: July 16, 2012, 12:18:06 PM »

@ Lyonel

I agree with JustinB that it looks like a revamp on the Sprints.  I am sure it will be a women only release, which judging by the looks of it, it should be.  We have already seen a glimpse of what the revamped Classic will look like, and it was nothing like that.  That actually seems truer to the original design, with a new strapping method.
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So be sure when you step.
Step with care and great tact and remember that Life's a Great Balancing Act.
Just never forget to be dexterous and deft. 
And never mix up your right foot and your left.

Oh, the Places You'll Go! by Dr. Suess
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« Reply #42 on: July 16, 2012, 09:55:41 PM »

Maybe slightly off topic, but I don't like the direction they're headed.  Seems like we're losing some simplicity.  I also think they have too many models.  I guess some of the models are starting to feel gimmicky to me.
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« Reply #43 on: July 18, 2012, 05:49:16 AM »

ideal line up would be classics sprints kso bikila komodo flow and seeya i think if they could have that many otherwise drop the komodo and one other
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« Reply #44 on: July 18, 2012, 07:12:27 AM »

ideal line up would be classics sprints kso bikila komodo flow and seeya i think if they could have that many otherwise drop the komodo and one other

For men, Classics arent a big seller hence why they are going - dunno how wel Sprints sell.  I think they need to do something that incorporates the current classic/sprint/kso sole as that seems popular.

Im guessing that the current mix of models and colours is to determine market acceptance thus future product strategy - do they go mainstream ? - if so, with what ? - how do they maintain existing customer base loyalty ?

If the US is their biggest market, Im guessing that soon they have to decide their market strategy, but the two things mainstream wont accept (that Vibram have 'got away' with in the past) is poor product quality and lack of availability.
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