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Volume 24 No. 176
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Brands Figuring Out Best Ways To Reach Consumers As New Mediums Pop Up

Media content has always been an asset for brands, and in recent years the mediums in which media content can be found has changed. Now brands must decipher the most effective way to reach their consumers on these new mediums. Frito-Lay Senior Dir of Marketing Christina Clarke at the '17 Stadium Sports Marketing Symposium said, “Digital for the first time has passed TV spend. So we need to think about where consumers are and how we get there as fast as we can. That is changing our entire media strategy, and content and context are super important.” Eagles Dir of Production Eric Long said, “We’re creating content across every platform that we can get our hands on, whether it be digital, social or even podcasts.” He added, “Wherever our audience is, that is where we want to go. ... Instead of trying to create behavior, we have accepted the fact that we take advantage of the platforms where people already are.” Heineken Brand Dir for Tecate Gustavo Guerra: “It’s a matter of finding that nugget or angles or moments in which we can deliver great content that can be fresh.” Scout Sports & Entertainment Exec VP & Managing Partner Michael Neuman: “The content has to freshen up the experience. It has to be very relevant and it has to be authentic. You have to look at the permission that you have as a sponsor. You have to look at the category you’re in and what the audience thinks of you as a brand entity that coexists in this large ecosystem where you have all these brands that are fighting for a share of the voice. The clutter that we saw at the live environment still exists in the digital space, so for us, content has to support the essence or efficacy of what the brand stands for, and it has to tie back promotionally to what it is we want consumers to do.”

THE MOBILE MOVEMENT: The rise of sports content on mobile devices has caught the attention of the brands. To reach today’s consumer a mobile campaign is becoming more of a necessity. Dunkin’ Brands Dir of Digital & Innovation Justin Unger, whose company recently released a mobile ordering platform, said, “We’re doubling down on mobile.” Clarke: “As we work across all the leagues and teams, it’s kind of a mobile-first type of strategy.” Neuman added, “Once you get to an environment like a live sporting event, everyone knows they are having their head in their mobile. They’re looking for secondary content and hear the roar of the crowd and look up. There’s not an attention span now in sporting events that there was a long time ago. For us, it’s extremely important that we’re using all of the digital avenues at our disposal that are packaged in deals that allow us to educate fans even before they walk into the building. We want them seeking out what it is our clients are executing in that live environment.”

THE HOT TOPIC: The panel briefly went around giving their thoughts on players kneeling during the anthem and what impact that has on brands. Unger, asked whether it is affecting his company’s decisions, said, “No, not directly.” Unger: “We’re winning games, so that helps. It’s hard to really measure it. Obviously, there is a lot of conversation. It’s something we’re aware of it. You just kind of make the most of what you can control.” Neuman: “There is a myriad of reasons why there is this fluctuation.” He added, “You had elections last year with two presidential debates, you have a concussion story that is not going away, you have less young kids playing tackle football and you’re raising a generation of kids that might be somewhat immune to the sport of football.” Clarke said, “You have a lot of different things that are coming in and I think it would be unfair to try and isolate a lot of different pieces.” Clarke: “Across a partnership it always comes back to the fundamentals of how do our assets work together and can we tell a brand narrative in a way that engages consumers. And, at the end of the day, that is the metric we go back to. So, it doesn’t matter the league, the team, the athlete, that’s always going to be the place we’re going to go.”