Player superstitions and rituals are legendary: Michael Jordan allegedly laced up a new pair of shoes before each game, and many current NBA players have established rituals involving peanut butter sandwiches.
Similarly, the fans of those sports have their own rituals and superstitions that they believe affect the outcome of that game. In a new marketing campaign, Ticketmaster likens the fan experience to that of the player.
A new ad running on social outlets features Minnesota Vikings tight end Kyle Rudolph and his team’s fans getting ready in a split-screen format. As Rudolph puts on his dress clothes to head to the stadium, the “professional” sports fans put on their jerseys and get ready to tailgate. At the stadium, Rudolph puts his game face on with music and eye black, while the fans paint their faces. The spot ends with Rudolph heading to the field, just as the fans enter the stadium.
The insights for the campaign were gleaned from a survey Ticketmaster conducted with 1,000 NFL fans in November 2017. The results revealed 90% of NFL fans believe the crowd in the stadium can influence the outcome of the game, and 30% of them believe game-day superstitions and rituals can have an impact.
“All of this speaks to the thrill of enjoying an NFL game in person,” says Ticketmaster’s head of sports, Greg Economou. “And we know that while fans are on the hunt for tickets, scammers are looking to take advantage of them.”
The partnership with Rudolph presents a potential noteworthy opportunity. Should the Vikings triumph against the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday, it would be the first team to ever play a Super Bowl in their its stadium. Should that occur, Economou expects high demand for tickets from local fans.
“As the official ticketing partner for Super Bowl LII, we will continue to work tirelessly until game day to ensure that fans know where they can purchase authentic, verified tickets for the Big Game to see their favorite team in action,” he says. (Regardless, Ticketmaster will have a presence at the NFL Experience in Minneapolis before the game, and will likely include Rudolph in some capacity.)
The approach is meant to position Ticketmaster as the fan’s ally, understanding what fans want out of the game experience and ensuring they get what they pay for, Economou says.
“Our campaign explores some really key questions about fan behaviors,” he tells Marketing Daily. “That’s what our team wanted to celebrate as we continue to work towards educating consumers about the importance and ease of safe ticket buying from Ticketmaster.”