Sunday, April 18, 2010

Sperm Shoes: A Marketing Misfire

The past two weeks I have been traveling to Florida then straight to Washington, DC then back to Michigan. Well, on my flight from Tampa to DC I found myself not sleeping with my face smashed up against the double paned oval window (which is the norm for me) but instead flipping through the classic and dependable Sky Mall Magazine.

While enjoying my complementary on flight grilled cheese and tomato soup AKA a Cheese Nips snack bag and a V-8, I stumbled across a product in the magazine that subconsciously connected with me on a completely different level than a bug vacuum or a wall size world map.

.............Sperm shoes.

All Pictures from Sky Mall Magazine

They are actually called "Gravity Defyers: spring technology footwear"..."Feel like you're defying gravity... GUARANTEED!". I personally prefer to call them sperm shoes because stuck on the side of each shoe there is a sperm shaped logo, as you can bluntly see in the Ad.

No one left behind

Hmmm.. Uhhhh... Why would a shoe use a sperm shape for a logo? Uhh- I get that it's springy in nature but come on... use a slinky logo or even a picture of a blue Costco trampoline! After reading some reviews for the shoes that I found on, I read many praises about the them being extremely comfortable... then I found this comment from Roberto: "...These shoes have sperm all over them, and I don’t know if they even realize it. You couldn’t pay me $130 to wear them. Lose the sperm, and maybe we’ll talk."  And another from Tom: "What’s up with the sperm image on the side of their shoes???????" The sperm is obviously turning people off... not on.

Futhermore, while I was giggling yet mortified for the actual bifocal dependent consumer who purchased these I noticed that the sperm shoes' sperm logo comes in a pleasent array of colors. They have an American basic but bold range of races colors, equipped with white, red and black sperm logos. So no worries if you are White, Black or Native American (or even just sun-burned) they have you represented.

It is hilarious that they use little sperm "G"s and "D"s to help spell the product name as well (see above)- that makes me want to buy the shoes even more or at least have that printed on the left chest of a golf shirt so people can be terrified yet secretly curious about what I may sell.

I get that they may be going for a tadpole logo. Tadpoles grow into frogs and frogs jump, hibbit hibbit, hop hop... but sperm is funnier and seriously much more obvious. Since marketing is my passion I believe that a strong logo can capture consumer's minds all over the world. You want to choose a strong and proud image/symbol/picture to represent your brand. It is just like a Facebook profile picture. Are you going to choose the embarassing, bad angle, double chin exposing picture to represent yourself to the social networking world? No way! You're going to choose the picture that hides your flaws or insecurities. A picture that makes you confident and presentable to your friends, your network, your target market. Logos are a companies Facebook picture and instead of striving to be adorable, inanely goofy or buff they strive to remind the world they exist and to be recognizable- for example ... Nike=swoosh, Jordan=jump man, Adidas, Kellogg's Tony the Tiger, Pepsi, Coke, a Sperm...I tried to slip that in to see if it would work.. But I don't think so...... ...... Well hey that is pretty memorable- maybe sperm shoes are genius! I guess all they have to do is sell the idea to actual human beings that it is cool to have a sperm on your shoes since it delivers a unique walking experience with this new "spring technology" or catch a break and have Jennifer Lopez or Brad Pitt caught in US Weekly wearing them in public. However, instead of covering her face from the camera I see JLo squatting down and pulling her dress to the ground to cover up those cool kicks. And as for Brad Pitt... Well that would actually make a lot of sense.

In conclusion, the only people that should have a sperm on there shoe is a doctor or nurse at a sperm bank or fertility clinic... For optimistic support or from (You guessed it...) accidentally spilling a sample cup!

Oh and if you're tempted to swim around town with these bad boys on your feet you can buy them for $129.95 to $139.95 at



  1. I love it! I've had a pair of sperm shoes before....not on purpose though. Even hair product...again, not on purpose. Maybe they are on to something...

  2. Wow! Very well written! Sperm shoes? What is the world coming to? haha

  3. they made the sperm logo so people will talk, its genius marketing

  4. Some retailers have opted to no longer carry GD shoes due to its controversial "Seed Of Life" logo:

    And yes, I suspect the pun was intended.

  5. Thank you for writing this. With the downfall of SkyMall this week, I was joking to people how I was sad I'll never get to own a pair of sperm shoes. The looked at me like I had three heads. I knew I wasn't the only one who found this product completely hysterical. RIP Sperm Shoes!!!!