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Just in time for the holiday season, Lego, in partnership with the French advertising agency Brand Station, has started to manufacture soft, padded Lego slippers—saving people from having to be in accidental, sharply-cornered-plastic-block-induced agony ever again.
Well, almost. Unfortunately, according to French blog Piwee, only 1,500 pairs of the slippers are available. That’s certainly not enough to protect against the terrifying 45 billion Lego bricks that are sold each year. And the slippers will be only given away to customers who fill out a Christmas wish list on the company’s French website.
You can wear either slipper on either foot—as Buzzfeed points out, the slippers are helpfully interchangeable “because who cares about such things when you’re in danger”—and they have enough cushioning to protect against the spikiest, most vicious of Lego blocks. Brand Station posted a video on Facebook showing how the slippers were made, describing them as “the ultimate Christmas gift.”
While the slippers are undoubtedly a marketing gimmick meant to bolster Lego’s already-huge-and-still-rising popularity, they’re also an example of holiday branding done right. The same can’t be said of dozens of other companies—the holiday season is always a crucial period for sales and for building up customer loyalty, and you can always count on at least a few major retailers to blow the opportunity on one or both counts.
Lego seems determined not to succumb to such pitfalls. Come December, many consumers without access to Lego slippers will no doubt have their loyalty to the brand tested by the torture involved in stepping on a Lego. But just by simply acknowledging their pain, the Lego company creates a lot of goodwill.