John Hancock Financial has been running a marketing marathon of its own, with the company entering its 27th year as a principal sponsor of the Boston Marathon.
The company's Twitter site @jhboston26 will continue to provide tweets about the 2012 Boston Marathon and related activities to followers and marathon enthusiasts. The site, which launched two years ago, has followers that include Olympians, elite marathoners, and coaches as well as fans of the sport.
Content will continue to include tweets on John Hancock's partnership with the Boston Athletic Association, the John Hancock Elite Athlete Program, Non-Profit and Employee Running and Fundraising Programs, and Marathon community initiatives.
"From sharing news about how the fastest marathon runners in the world are preparing for the Boston Marathon to letting followers know what makes this event so special to non-profit community runners, we hope our feed adds to the unique appeal of the world's preeminent and oldest marathon,” said Rob Friedman, head of sports and event marketing at John Hancock, in a release.
John Hancock provides “substantial financial support” to ensure the ongoing success of the race. Each year, John Hancock recruits and sponsors a world-class, elite athlete field for the race and has provided nearly $14 million in prize and bonus awards.
Company employees volunteer to help with marathon-related tasks and also participate in the race to raise money for local charities. In 2011, more than a thousand John Hancock-0sponsored non-profit runners, including 100 John Hancock and Manulife employees, raised $5.3 million for 90 local charities and Habitat for Humanity-Canada.
During race week, John Hancock provides resources for local school initiatives and provides a wide range of financial support and services to the towns and cities along the marathon route. The company also sponsors the John Hancock Sports & Fitness Expo that draws 200 exhibitors and 80,000 visitors.
The direct and indirect economic value to the community of the Boston Marathon weekend in 2011 was calculated at $132.2 million, according to Greater Boston Convention & Visitor Bureau.