Twenty-seven million championship game viewers. $11+ million in prize money. Screaming fans. Overflowing arenas.
You did it! You decided to sponsor a team, arena or player in a sport that supports your company's goals, indexes highly in your target market or is simply your CEO's favorite past time. Now what? Most companies fail because they did not think beyond ticket sales, stadium signage, the logos on the jerseys, or the few times a year you get to interact with the player. These are the basics of sponsorship deals. It is the "ticket" to entry.
It's MLB All-Star Tuesday, the unofficial middle of summer. Those figurative "dog days" are before us, and with the NBA and NHL on hiatus, NFL training camps still a few weeks away, MLB's playoff push and a questionably compelling Olympics still a month or so away, the mindset of our sports fan customers may be fertile ground for those who can truly capture attention. But what will it take to resonate, here on the back nine of a year that has certainly been fraught with a barrage of often sensationalistic and negative news from within and outside of sports?
No matter where you spent your holiday weekend, NBA free agency news likely found you. No secluded lake, no backyard barbecue, no camping trip was remote enough to escape the headlines - and massive contracts - generated in the past 72 hours. For those lucky few free agents, it was a payday in the making since at least October 2014.
A new report out this month takes an inside look at the current state of young athletes, participation by youngsters in sports and community athletic programs and the impact of these programs on health and fitness.
In an industry as tight-lipped as gaming, speculating about the up-and-coming trends is like navigating the stock market with tealeaves. Big news is kept under lock and key because even a small leak will end up on the front page of the Internet. Though it's difficult to predict which tech innovation or new entertainment trend will pop up next, I'd wager that if you really know the industry, you'd be able to paint a picture of what lies ahead. Take a look at my painting-Monet or Picasso?
At the risk of being self aggrandizing, I'll submit that as a consultative marketing researcher, I've gotten pretty good at asking probing questions. I've also become a big proponent of loyalty marketing best practices and rewarding best customers. And while I've often espoused that sports marketers shouldn't make the mistake of ascribing their own behaviors, beliefs or experiences to that of their targets, two recent incidents have me questioning one of my fundamental beliefs about loyalty marketing.
By this time next week, competitive sailing will likely have a legion of new fans throughout Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin and Michigan. Thousands of Midwesterners and prospective sailing "nuts" will get their first taste of world class sailing as the America's Cup brings the Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series to Chicago, a historic first on fresh water.
A recent sports marketing development is the decision by the NBA to allow small logos on player jerseys. The Philadelphia 76ers were the first to jump in with a deal with StubHub, the online ticket broker. There was some negative backlash, but not enough to make waves or give them second thoughts. The other major pro leagues (MLB, NFL, NHL) came out and said hey are not following, but it is likely just a matter of time until our beloved pro athletes are covered in logos or at least a logo. At look at why the NBA went this route ...
When the French Open Grand Slam at Roland Garros takes over the tennis world for the next two weeks (May 22 - June 5), it will be without some of the game's biggest names - Roger Federer and Caroline Wozniacki out due to health, Maria Sharapova due to her drug-related suspension - but it will have the biggest draw in the sport: Serena Williams.