SBD/February 10, 2011/Marketing and Sponsorship

Nets Hire Branding Firm To Help Relocation From Newark To Brooklyn

Nets planning to move from Newark to Barclays Center after the '11-12 season
The Nets have hired N.Y.-based branding firm Translation "to help 'position' the move" from Newark to Brooklyn in '12, according to Rich Thomaselli of AD AGE. The company is "charged with speaking to a variety of constituencies surrounding the Nets' move from New Jersey, including potential new season-ticket holders, current season-ticket holders, longtime fans of the team, local businesses and, perhaps most important, to a vocal though now dwindling group of citizens who have long opposed a new arena in Brooklyn." Nets CEO Brett Yormark said, "Obviously this is a moment we've been waiting for for six years and we only get one shot to get it right. ... They'll help us not only on the Nets brand, but also identifying the Barclays Center." Thomaselli noted part of the "branding struggle is that the Nets have been something of a nomadic franchise ever since coming into existence" in '67. As a result, Translation plans on "appealing to the nostalgia factor that the Nets would be the first major professional sports franchise in Brooklyn since baseball's Dodgers left for Los Angeles in 1958, and pumping up the Barclays Center as a world-class entertainment venue." The firm is likely to "play to a variety of multicultural audiences that reflect the team and the city of Brooklyn, including utilizing" team Owner Mikhail Prokhorov and rapper and Nets investor Jay-Z. Translation President Steve Stoute: "We won't be treating this like a relocated team. We'll be treating this like a team that has a new brand value. Our work is going to be as diverse as Brooklyn itself." Stoute added that Translation's "first work for the Nets is expected to break this spring" (ADAGE.com, 2/9).
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