October 4, 2012 11:00 AM
John Cena said he's proud to have the WWE involved in the fight against breast cancer.
Photo by:Marc Bryan-Brown
Of the WWE’s early years, Cena said: “If you ask me about our product in 2000, it was a college frat party. It really was. And it was geared toward that coveted 18-35-year-old demographic. Nowadays, 40% of our audience is women. And a lot of the 100 million dollars of retail is kids. I’m a star of a kids show. I’m really proud to say that.”
Cena came dressed in his standard uniform, which makes a statement in a fight against breast cancer. He stuck around for a networking reception and had his photo taken with dozens of Sports Marketing Symposium attendees.
October 4, 2012 10:29 AM
What are sports fans looking for these days?
Affordable tickets, exclusive access and, when they watch a game on TV, a little Twitter to keep them company.
Sports Fans Speak Out
Howard Handler, MLS
Andrew Judelson, WWE
Alex Michael, LivingSocial
Mike Stevens, New York Giants
Roger VanDerSnick, IMG College
-- The No. 1 drawback to attending games is ticket prices.
-- They don’t won’t sponsors on athlete jerseys, but could live with it it that drove down prices.
-- They would love to meet athletes, but agreed that the experience just isn’t as authentic if you have to pay for it.
-- They generally have at least three screens up at any given time while watching from home.
-- Twitter is their No. 1 method for getting sports information, and they often use it at work and while attending live games.
-- None of the panelists had ever bought food from their phone, but they said they would if it was an option and they knew how.
Roger VanDerSnick, on fan experience in the venue: “In the college space, it’s taking access and really understanding how valuable and emotional that on-field experience is before the game. That type of access you really can’t put a price on. “
Mike Stevens, on fan engagement ideas for the N.Y. Giants: “I think you always have to get that from the fans. We’re not always going to be the originator of an idea. And a lot of times it comes from the marketplace. But really it has to do with whether you can execute it.”
October 4, 2012 10:26 AM
The way in that sports properties measure brand engagement took center stage during a Wednesday afternoon panel titled, “What Sports Can Do For Brands.”
Here are selected quotes from the session:
What Sports Can Do for Brands
Valerie Camillo, NBA
Kurt Hunzeker, Rawlings Sporting Goods
A.J. Maestas, Navigate Research
Julie Propper, ESPN
Alicia Rankin, NFL
John Turner, Sponsorship Intelligence
Kristin Warfield, Churchill Downs/Kentucky Derby
“There is not an existing social currency we currently use, and we’re not abl to see all of the social data out there,” said ESPN’s Julie Propper. “We’re looking to see how positive and negative Tweets can cause and effect perception in social media. Nobody has come through with a breakthrough way of measuring that data.”
On how measurements and metrics have changed the way properties advertise:
“The Boston Celtics have reconfigured their courtside signage to capture more impressions,” said NBA exec Valerie Camillo. “They did strong analytics to show how a game is shot, they moved away from traditional alignment of a big scorer’s table along the center court, because much of the game takes place in the back court, so you see a portion or none of that table. What if we shorten that center table and take two 10-foot tables and put it in the corners? The media impressions were upped significantly.”
On the value of sports sponsorship on the agency side:
“There is a huge difference,” said John Turner of Sponsorship Intelligence. “Five seconds in an NFL game is worth way more than a NASCAR race. We’re constantly trying to get in a clear environment with our clients so they can stand out so they’re not just logo soup up there.:
On how to use fan feedback to measure engagement:
“Our fan surveys are steady, we know that a 20-minute survey doesn’t work anymore,” said the NFL’s Alicia Rankin. “We don’t offer incentives for our fans to take surveys. You have to be smart in your methodology. You have to make it brief.”
October 4, 2012 09:03 AM
Brands are becoming more judicious in the way that they choose who to endorse, according to panelists in a discussion about athlete endorsements. The fallout from the Tiger Woods scandal, for example, has caused sponsors to think longer and harder about who they sign and about the language they include in their their contracts.
Athlete Endorsements as a
Strategic Marketing Platform
Rob Candelino, Unilever
Cullen Jones, Olympic swimmer
Matt Mirchin, Under Armour
Evan Morgenstein, Premier Management Group
Jim Tanner, Williams & Connolly
Alan Zucker, IMG Talent Marketing Group
U.S Olympic swimmer Cullen Jones said that he thinks of himself as a brand and believes that is what has to happen for athletes to be recognized. When even relatively unknown reality TV stars are competing for deals, agents and brands are focusing more on an organic, authentic match-up and becoming better storytellers.
Jim Tanner, on what drives marketing: “One of the things we always tell new clients is don’t start with branding. Start with performance. That drives 90 percent of marketing.”
Matt Mirchin, on figuring out what reaches your customers: “As a brand you want to associate yourself with something that resonates with your consumer. From our perspective, Under Armour is all about making athletes better. So it’s nice when entertainers or celebrities wear our product. But we’re going to go right to that sweet spot with the athletes because that’s who resonates with us.”
Candelino, on Unilever's athletes representing Dove Men: “Every one of them has told a story or a sentimental moment that has shaped them as men. We think that has been a winning formula because it resonates with our brand. If we started trying to be a sports brand, then we’ve lost the plot. I think far too often nowadays, brands, particularly ones that don’t have both feet firmly entrenched in sports, subcontract their responsibility of brand equity to the athlete. If you do that, you’re done.”
Allan Zucker, on athlete overexposure: “People talk about overexposure all the time. Whether it’s Tiger Woods or Peyton Manning or Danica Patrick, [they say] 'I see them everywhere.’ Yea, they are everywhere, but people keep calling. So obviously they must be doing something right with their brands or people wouldn’t want to work with them anymore.”
Jones, on using Twitter: “Granted, I might have thoughts that I might want to instantly put out there, [but] It’s not smart to do that. I consider myself a brand.”
October 3, 2012 07:53 PM
Among the topics being discussed:
■ Was keynote speaker Tor Myhren on the mark with his talk about marketing to the 'We' generation?
■ How surprising was it that Twitter outpolled Facebook as the place that fans turn to first for news about their teams?
■ And how do athletes compete for endorsements with reality show starts and others who are cheaper and more willing to satisfy marketers' demands?
In our second session on “Marketing from the C-Suite,” Verizon Wireless VP and CMO Tami Erwin sat with SportsBusiness Journal reporter Eric Fisher to talk about new products, measuring ROI and the company’s deal with the NFL. Verizon is the largest single buyer in sports advertising, with approximately $345 million spent in 2011. “Every day I get questions from our COO asking, Is this the right way to spend money?” Erwin said. “We can take the analytics out of aggregated, anonymous information to answer that question: Who am I reaching through those sponsorships?”
On streaming NFL content over the network:
“What we’ve got with the NFL Red Zone is exclusive content, and our customers are valuing that on our network. I don’t know if I can directly say that content has affected [Verizon’s] girth.”
On whether exclusive mobile rights will make Verizon a broadcaster:
“I don’t know if we’re going to be considered a broadcaster, but we understand the importance of delivering content to customers, whether it’s at home or on a tablet or on the phone.”
On which devices she uses every day:
“I swap devices every week. I always have three to four at any time, I have a Samsung S3, an HTC device, which is my wallet, an Apple tablet. I also have a Blackberry at the bottom of my briefcase.”
On how foreign mobile users are ahead of American consumers:
“From a mobile banking standpoint, the Europeans and Asians are ahead of us. We lead in terms of speed and feeds with 4G LTE.”
October 3, 2012 05:01 PM
Beth Hirschhorn with interviewer Terry Lefton.
Photo by:Marc Bryan-Brown
Here are selected quotes from the session:
On the paternalistic and scare messages that take up lots of ad space: “You can’t scare people into buying something. The way we are addressing the clutter is positioning our brand as more empowering than the other guys. So our entire global brand platform is about enabling people to take action.”
On the Metlife stadium naming-rights deal: “Think about the market as a funnel. You’ve got awareness at the top and a whole host of things, whether it be purchase consideration or preference, eventually getting down to more engagement and one-to-one relationships and sales. The thing about this property that is different than all others is it works on all of those levels.”
On fan engagement outside of the stadium: “We’re trying to bring the experience on the field off the field. Democratizing the fan experience through giving people access to things they’ve never had access to before. So if you want to know what it feels like to kick a field goal, meet us this Sunday.”
Hirschorn: "Don't try to hit all home runs. Small things can make a difference.".
Photo by:Enter Name Here
On their foundation donating $50,000 to charities of the MetLife Bowl: “We really always try to build in and incorporate the social responsibility component. You will definitely see that from us with this Super Bowl. I don’t know what it will look like, but we will be doing something good for somebody … lots of somebodies.”
In retrospect…: “Don’t try to hit all home runs. You don’t know what’s going to work and what’s not going to work. So when you get out of the gate, you’d be surprised at what small things can make a difference.”
On the next frontier for the NFL and finding success regionally: “It’s a big world out there, and we would give anything for better expansion outside of the U.S. You go outside of the U.S. … and they just don’t care. It’s a totally different animal, and it is of no interest.”
On social media strategy: “We’ve seen promotions where companies are out there buying fans, and I don’t really think that’s the answer. One of the things that you should know is that our most used or most popular use by consumers of social media with us is from a service sampling. People want their problems solved.”
Tor Myhren opened the conference with a talk about marketing to millenials.
Photo by:Marc Bryan-Brown
On sports still capturing live TV audiences, especially the Super Bowl: “I call it America’s last campfire, because it’s the only day where we all get together and sit around one place and we all experience that story together. It never happens other than that.”
On the importance of creativity: “I hope nobody in this room has ever uttered this phrase, because I work at an ad agency, and I hear it all the time. ‘I am not creative.’ Think about how I started this talk. 1,500 of the top CEOs in America value creativity as the No. 1 leadership competency for the future. So don’t ever say this if you ever want a job.”