SBD/26/Sponsorships Advertising Marketing

PANTHERS KEEP SKATING WITH MARKETING STRATEGY

     The Panthers' second-season marketing strategy will closely
resemble last year's and will continue to be guided by a clear
philosophy:  "Educate those who need to be educated without
insulting those who don't."  Dean Jordan, Panthers' VP for
Business and Marketing:  "We're not going to do much differently
from a marketing standpoint.  We had a good system, and we're
going to just try and expand and build on it."  Program elements
include:  "Panthers' Pocket Guide to Hockey," a John
Vanbiesbrouck instructional video available for rent at
Blockbuster stores, the "Streetcats" street-hockey program for
children.  95% of the team's season-ticket holders renewed for
this year; prices were raised from only in the sold-out lower
bowl, which climbed from $32.50 to $38.00 (Dave Sheinin, MIAMI
HERALD, 9/25).
     COME ONE, COME ALL:  In an effort to give all patrons an
equal chance to purchase Panther Pack seats ($8/ticket), the
Panthers and Ticketmaster announced the implementation of random
number distribution.  Steve Dangerfield, Panthers' Director of
Ticket and Game Day Operations:  "It is the goal of the Panthers
and Ticketmaster to stop overnight camping for safety reasons.
In addition, we hope to deter scalpers or ticket brokers the
ability to hire people to camp out to get the first tickets made
available" (THE DAILY).
     TICKETMASTER REVIEW:  In a separate story in yesterday's
MIAMI HERALD, Alina Matas profiles Ticketmaster, "a $190M-a-year
national giant" that "rules the off-site world of the tix biz"
through its agreements with a wide range of venues for ticket
sales and distribution.  Matas:  "The monies they get are called
'rebates.'  Some call them 'kickbacks.'"  Robert Franklin,
manager of the Miami Arena:  "It's a revenue source for us.  The
service charge is very profitable.  There's virtually no cost
associated with it."  (MIAMI HERALD, 9/25).
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