SBD/May 24, 2011/Marketing and Sponsorship

HP Leveraging Byron Nelson Classic Deal By Featuring Products At Tech Zone

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Frank Accettulli has one goal for the HP Byron Nelson Championship: to become the most tech-savvy golf tournament on the PGA Tour. Accettulli, HP’s VP/Corporate Marketing, Sponsorship & Events, has put a renewed focus on that goal with this week’s tournament just outside of Dallas. It starts with the HP Tech Zone near the second hole at TPC Four Seasons. The 3,000-square-foot interactive area, which is designed to look like an upscale country club locker room, will expose fans to many of HP’s products, including nine 42-inch touchscreens where they can view PGA Tour highlights, product videos, Google maps and other content. The latest in HP laptops, Envy notebooks, Palm handhelds, TouchSmart technology personal computers and printers will be featured, as well as charging stations for cell phones inside branded HP phone zones around the course. “We debuted the Tech Zone last year, but this year it’s twice the size and we have a lot more equipment in there,” said Accettulli, who ran the tournament for EDS before the company was acquired by HP in ‘08. “We’re one of the world’s leading tech companies and we need to use this platform to show the world what we’ve got. And it will make the experience better for the fans.” HP handled much of its golf activation in-house, but it did work with The Marketing Arm on an Avatar concept for the TouchSmart screens in the Tech Zone. Fans will have the opportunity to dress their Avatar on the computers and when they print out the Avatar, it will come with an HP coupon. On the HP video boards around the course, a “Twicker” feed -- a compilation of Twitter posts that focus on the tournament -- will scroll across the screens. “The more we can weave social media into our technology, the more we can enhance the experience for the fans,” Accettulli said. The most prolific Twitter posters will be invited to the HP hospitality area at the course. HP also will be distributing 2,500 tickets for its best customers and clients.
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