With Black Friday upon us, we thought we would take a quick look at the marketing of soccer products in the United States. Dave Frederick of Concave Sports was kind enough to chat with us about his product and what is involved in marketing a new soccer shoe in the United States. Mr. Frederick is an attorney who has been involved in sales and corporate development for a number of years. He is a lifetime soccer player and has been involved with Concave for three years. At the bottom of this post, check our our review of the new Concave shoe.
Footiebusiness.com: What is unique about the Concave product?
David Frederick: The technology that we have built into the upper of the boot is unlike any other soccer shoe on the market. We have increased the sweet spot of the primary striking area of the boot by 400%, increasing power by 15% and accuracy by 30%. The easiest analogy is that we are doing for soccer what Calloway did for golf by introducing the Big Bertha driver and what Prince did for tennis by introducing the oversize racquets.
FB: What was the impetus for bringing it to market in the United States? The soccer playing population in the US is huge at all age levels. Who is your target market?
DF: We have shoes for almost every age level and player type. Our target audience is players that want to improve their game.
FB: What is your plan for marketing Concave in the U.S.?
DF: We are taking a grass roots approach in our marketing. We are focusing PR on local channels as we open new soccer specialty retail stores. We are running promotional events with our Kicker Tube which allows players to try the boots first hand and have the speed of their shots recorded. We are also active in various social media channels such as Twitter and Face Book. We are going to be very active at soccer trade shows and promotions through soccer clubs and academies.
FB: Do you intend to enter the mainstream retail sporting goods market or soccer specialty stores?
DF: Our primary focus is on soccer specialty stores.
FB: Does Concave have any agreements with MLS teams or MLS players to wear Concave products? Do you anticipate any such arrangements?
DF: Brandon Barklage of DC United and Scott Palguta of the Colorado Rapids both wore Concaves during this past MLS season. We are actively engaged with additional players in the MLS and USL for sponsorships for the coming season. We have several players in England and Scotland wearing the boots, including John O’Shea and Danny Webber, as well as several players in the Championship and First Division.
FB: What does Concave charge for its boots? How did you determine the price point?
DF: Our PT+ model (kangaroo leather uppers) retail $175; PT 1 (calf leather uppers) $120; PT Midi (synthetic uppers) $70; PT Dome (calf leather indoor shoe) $80; PT Mini (synthetic children’s shoe) $50. Each model is targeted to be priced competitively in its category.
Thanks to Dave Fredereick. Now for our thoughts on the boots. They are definitely the best looking soccer cleat we have ever seen; the unique design is certainly quite different than the tyipcal cleat design. The shoes fit well and were very comfortable to wear. Out on the field, they performed quite well, as ball striking was effiicent and powerful. The larger sweet spot certainly adds a confidence factor when shooting from long range while at odd angles. Our only criticism was that the molded shoe seemed to get clogged with dirt a bit quicker than usual, but traction never slipped and performance never suffered.