SBJ/July 23-29, 2012/Leagues and Governing Bodies

PBA taps Shamrock for 'team bowling' sales, marketing

With the Professional Bowlers Association looking to adopt more of a team-oriented, motorsports model of competition, Shamrock Sports and Entertainment, an agency founded by former NASCAR marketer Brian Corcoran, has been named the PBA’s new sales and marketing agency.

The PBA has revamped its model to include a team competition.
Photo by: PBA
Geoff Reiss, who joined the PBA as vice chairman in March 2011 and was named CEO last November, described the new model of competition as one in which different teams would compete, similar to NASCAR, and those team competitions would share the stage with the traditional, individual bowling competition. Each team would be backed by an individual sponsor and would feature one top-tier “franchise bowler.” Reiss added that the amount of branding and product integration will likely exceed NASCAR’s.

“Our value proposition for non-endemic sponsors has been as just another media buy,” Reiss said. “No sports league can hope to be successful without a sponsorship offering that cuts across media, produces for a lot of activation and helps build more of a crossover audience.”

The “team bowling” packages are just getting to market, Reiss said. He hopes to have six to eight of the team competitions mixed with individual competitions, with the first one starting in January.

The PBA is in the last year of its TV deal with ESPN, and Reiss is looking to add some buzz to bowling, cognizant of the changes in the TV sports rights landscape added by the development of NBC Sports Network and CBS Sports Network.
Van Wagner Sports was the last agency of record for the PBA.


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