From Sneaker Love to Influencer: Tobias Platzer and His Bond with
From Sneaker Love to Influencer: Tobias Platzer and His Bond with adidas - Immortalised in a Tattoo

From Sneaker Love to Influencer: Tobias Platzer and His Bond with adidas - Immortalised in a Tattoo

Sneakers have long been more than just shoes - for many they are a passion, even a lifestyle. This is also the case for our interview partner today, Tobias Platzer aka @hypetobs, who is known as a sneaker influencer. He owns perhaps the largest adidas sneaker collection in the world and was even allowed to visit the adidas archives. But how did he get there and what connects him so strongly with the adidas brand? In this interview, he talks about his journey through the world of sneakers and how an idea even became a tattoo for eternity.

Hey Tobias, please introduce yourself to the readers and give us a little insight into your life.
Hello everyone! I'm Tobi, 29 years old and a web developer from near Munich. I discovered my passion for sneakers in 2015 and combined it with my hobby, photography, to start my Instagram account @hypetobs. Every day I find out about the latest trends of various brands, but my heart belongs to the three stripes.

Let's start with perhaps the most important question: Are the three adidas tattoos on your right arm real and how did this great love come about?
Haha, actually I get asked that very very often. Just the other day, my colleague found out after months that it's not a temporary tattoo. Yes, the three logos are real and have been with me since 2019. Even true adidas greats like Till Jagla couldn't believe that I pulled it off. I associate a lot with this brand and I also wanted to immortalise a period in my life with the tattoo.

How did you become a sneaker influencer?
My passion for sneakers developed with the first YEEZY. I had seen the 350 "Oxford Tan" on the internet at the time and really wanted to have it. Of course, I didn't know at the time that it would be an odyssey to even be able to buy the shoe. I read up further and then came across other sneaker models that I also liked. And that led from one to the other. One day, a few packages fluttered into the house, I started collecting, browsing around sneaker forums and then the 350 "Pirate Black" came along. I got it directly from adidas and wanted to show my friends what I had in my hands. So I had the idea of taking the shoe to the office and shooting it in our studio. But since all that didn't fit into my private profile, I created a new account and posted there diligently. Over time, I added a few followers, reposts increased and then I was approached by the first companies, including adidas. My contact at the time, Markus, wrote to me and wanted to know my size. After a while, adidas sent me a package and then it all started. :) 

How do you deal with the responsibility you have as an influencer?
I'm relatively relaxed about it. Of course, you should keep in mind that a lot of people (currently almost 46,400) are watching you and everything you write and post can be read by these people. Everyone has an opinion about it and I also receive a lot of messages from different people. But since I've gotten used to it by now, I actually enjoy getting in touch with these people, exchanging ideas and also discussing things. But I also try to use this outreach on important topics that have nothing to do with sneakers or streetwear. It's the least I can do as a sneaker influencer.

Are you in contact with the older generation of sneaker fans and do you think there is a contrast between older and younger sneakerheads or does it feel like a family?
The sneaker community, especially at adidas, is made up of different generations. It's no secret when I say that Nike currently has a strong hold on the younger generation. Sure, the Samba is interesting again for a broader mass, but that is very limited compared to the Dunk.
I'm in regular contact with my followers and I always see that everything is there, from young to old. But the interests are often different. The young generation celebrates the unusual and bulky sneakers like the YEEZY BOOST 700 or the new Youth of Paris collab with adidas, while the older generation is a bit more simple and sticks to familiar silhouettes like the ZX8000, the Gazelle or now also the UltraBOOST. But all in all, I think there's one big thing in common, and that's sneakers in general. You also notice at sneaker fairs that people like to exchange ideas and support each other.  

We've seen that your sneaker wall is huge, but what are your favourite sneakers and why?
By now there are really many shoes in my possession and I never thought I'd say this, but I'm slowly losing track too, haha! But my favourites are clear:
adidas UltraBOOST Parley 1/50 F&F
I've had a thing for this shoe ever since it was presented by Eric Liedtke. Unfortunately, it was only a prototype at the time. When 50 pairs were distributed to Family & Friends, I was even sadder because I thought I would never hold these shoes in my hands. But then, after years of searching, @twojskicks had cleaned out his shop and also sold this pair. And I immediately bought them and didn't regret a single euro. This shoe is a dream and I will never give it away again. Clear 1st place. 

adidas Futurecraft 4D F&F
I never imagined that I would be able to call this shoe my own one day. Through some connections, I was able to find someone who wanted to sell this shoe and had asked me beforehand if there was any interest. After negotiating the price, I had to buy it. Great shoe and compared to the first 4D pairs, you can see the development and progress that adidas has made.

Pharrell adidas HU NMD Burgundy F&F
My number 3 is also a Family & Friends pair. But this time from Pharrell. The HU NMD Burgundy is a beautiful shoe that was sometimes sold at abnormal prices. I also got this one through some connections. Used, but I had it cleaned and since then it has found a great place in my wall.

What makes a good sneaker design?
That's not so easy to answer. I think that a sneaker should not always be reduced to its design. If you look at big collabs like the Off-White x Nike collection, for example, it wouldn't be very nice without the background knowledge about Virgil's intention. But the story behind it and the thoughts he and his teams have put into it also adds value to the design and thus generates hype (among other things). For me, sneaker designs have to fit the theme and the story. That can be fancy, but also very simple can be convincing. I'm a big fan of great materials like suede and elegant colours like earth tones.

Do you own a pair of Nike shoes?
In the beginning I also collected other brands. Of course, Nike was represented. I once had almost all the pairs from Virgil's "The Ten" collection, but then I sold some of them off piece by piece. The ones I still own are the AJ1 Chicago Off-White, the Mars Yard 2.0, the AF1 Off-White Complexcon and two-three normal pairs. However, I don't wear any of these any more, but they continue to serve as a store of value. 

What are your favourite sneaker releases for 2023?
There will be some good releases from adidas this year. Besides the Consortium Tour pairs that are still being released, the Jerry Lorenzo and adidas collab is finally coming out. Sean will still release his Gazelles and a blank canvas ORKETRO, my KITH Samba should be delivered at the end of the year, Bad Bunny will release one or the other shoe and Pharrell is also working on a few colours of the NMD S1 MAHBS. We can look forward to it!

How do you see the role of social media in sneaker culture?
I believe that social media is here to stay. Especially in sneaker culture. Brands need to show what's new, even (planned) leaks help in marketing and fuel the mood and hype. But it's not just the brands that need all this, we fans do too. We can look forward to releases and great spontaneous events like the current Coachella, but also show what we have ourselves. Social media is especially important in this scene, without social media the sneaker culture would certainly not have grown as much as it currently has.

What tips do you have for sneaker fans who want to build their own social media presence?
Stay true to yourself and get creative. In this day and age, thanks to TikTok and Instagram, it's hard to even get followers with the same approach from 2015. Therefore, post continuously, find your style and show yourself in front of the camera. All while having fun creating content, of course!

Thank you so much for your time and insights, Tobi. I wish you continued success and hope we stay in touch.

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