The Ties That Bind: Pro Football HOF Reaches Eight-Year TV Deal With NFL Network
As the Pro Football HOF begins observing its 50th anniversary, a "TV deal for the hall once nearly completed with ESPN has gone instead to NFL Network," according to Terry Lefton in this week's SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL. The result is "an eight-year deal that will give NFL Network viewers a seasonlong view of the Hall of Fame selection process." Also in the works is "a deal with Showtime, where a Hall of Fame segment and a fan-voting program will be featured within the weekly 'Inside the NFL' highlights show." Credit for that "has to go to Insignia, the New York-based sports marketing agency founded last May that has represented the Pro Football Hall of Fame for a year." Insignia President & CEO Peter Murray said, "We’re selling it like it’s a 33rd NFL team, with a content strategy, media extensions and IP sales, and extending the brand with a presence at key times in the NFL calendar." New sponsors include audio manufacturer Harman-Kardon and Kay Jewelers, which will "update the Hall of Fame ring and sell rings at retail." Scientific Games has "a lottery deal, and Parade magazine is a media partner." Pro Football HOF VP/Marketing Dave Motts said, "The idea is to increase fan engagement, not just at Canton, but across platforms with all the content we have, and grow to a national brand" (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, 7/15 issue). In Cleveland, Tom Reed noted the HOF since opening its doors in '63 has "increased in volume, square footage and relevance." Its growth has "mirrored that of the game it glorifies through artifacts, education and outreach." The HOF will "toast the recently completed" $27M renovation project on Aug. 3 at its Golden Anniversary Reunion, and expects "upwards of 130 of its 162 living enshrinees to attend festivities" (CLEVELAND.com, 7/14).