Recently, Nike released 40 MMPROTO iron sets. A very limited release that sold out in less than a minute. As luck has it, we were number 3 in line. To answer your question right off the bat… No, we did not get any special treatment being we are a golf company. I was just like everyone else, updating the browser hoping to get a shot at getting a set. Their popular Method putter line is one we can not customize due to their use of Polymetal type groves and insert work within the construction of their putter that does not allow us to customize their putters. Simply put the heat and chemicals needed to apply our finishes would compromise the inserts of their putters and all we can do with them is buff and polish. Its a shame because they are really cool putters and a lot of our customers want them in black.
Just like anyone else, we had the browser open and ready at 10am to see if we could get a set. I was on a customer call when the time came, and unfortunately it was 13 mins past the time they indicated the opportunity would open. Just out of chance I refreshed my browser and they requested my phone number. I got through..
The experience for one that got through like myself was awesome. I was on hold for just a few minutes (I was number 3 so it did not take all that long) and the nice and knowledgeable representative from Nike took down my contact info, payment info and laid out the expectations for the rest of the process. For those that did not get through and get a set they were a bit upset (mostly because the opportunity did not open up until about 13 – 14 minuets after the stated time. Others were upset that the quantities were so limited. I am sure Nike knew that it was not going to make everyone happy, but personally I get it. Its a limited release and designed for buzz and a bit of frantic behavior. For those that are not in the online marketing world, this was a really smart campaign. I am sure they got a ton of new followers, built a buzz and had the whole golf equipment junky world fully focused on NIKE even if it is a short period of time. And here we are, writing about it so the prolonged effect is also positive.
The next step was a representative calling to get my specs and requests for the custom build. They had three options, 1. Tigers Specs, 2, Rory’s specs, 3, tell them your specs. I chose the third. KBS Tour X half inch over their standard with New Decade grips – 2 wraps. The representative again let me know what to expect for shipping date and gave me his contact info if I needed any follow up.
I did not choose to do the stamps. Being I have never seen the clubs before and am in a unique position where I have a club shop at my disposal with a lot of cool options I wanted to leave them blank in case my best option was to give them to another person, or sell them.
The clubs came in on the day promised, sent FedEx overnight shipping. They even provided a drop box folder with a couple of pictures of my irons before they left. Smart, probably in the effort for people to share them on social networks and continue the buzz.
Nike MMPROTOTYPE Limited Forged Irons Review
The clubs look great, minimal offset with nice clean lines. I am playing to about a 1 handicap, so this iron fits my eye as a players iron. The cool part of the delivery was a spec sheet with the weights and specs of my clubs. I thought this was really well executed, with heavy stock paper and hand signed documentation of the set.
If I were to criticize anything, I guess I would say I would have liked a follow up with the club builder after they took down my specs. The clubs are pretty darn heavy. I choose my specs based on another set I have played well with, but the swing weights came out to a more traditional D2 – D3 range and this set came out to a D6 range. I realize many players probably don’t care but it would have been nice to know they were going to spec out on the heavier side so I had a choice to change up my shaft option to get my swing weights in a more traditional spec.
I’m not complaining, just in a sake of a review it was something that I would identify as something I might change if I was in their shoes.
The packaging is awesome, it came in a white box that was protected by a more traditional standard cardboard box so the white packaging was not compromised. Smart move, I will certainly keep the box as it was a great part of the experience. The clubs were well protected, spaced very well and in two layers as the pictures show. This was something I have not seen before and was really well done. Packing material is pretty expensive – we have shopped for custom options for ourselves and have decided against it as there was no way we could not pass that price along to our customers – I guess it is just the luxury of being a big brand like Nike – so I tip the cap knowing how expensive this type of packaging is.
The clubs look awesome, I want to play them but I am on the fence. Curiosity is of course in play and I have been watching the eBay listings for the irons that people are selling from this one in forty promotion. I have seen a one set go for over 5K – the seller claiming that it is the number one set. Others have gone for well over 3K.
I have little doubt that this iron will make it in to production. From all indications the consumer consensus is they meet the eye test. I also noticed that a big percentage of Nike athletes have them in the bag including Watney, Henley, and Olesen via GolfWRX.com. Rory also used a 2 iron in the MMPROTO name in his victory at The Open.
It just makes no sense to not put these clubs in to production with staff players gaming them and the R&D / Forging investment to not get it back through consumer sales.
So, the question becomes, do we sell this set knowing I will have a good chance of getting the production model down the line, or play this set knowing it is not feasible for a player with my credentials to get another “OVEN” set? The deliberation is a good one to have, but certainly weighing on my mind.