Mtn Dew Integrates Brand Into Expanded NBA 3-Point Contest
The NBA is making a change to the Mtn Dew 3-Point Contest at this month’s All-Star Weekend that will see the title sponsor integrate its brand into the actual competition. New this year will be the "Mtn Dew Zone," from which players will shoot a green Mtn Dew-branded ball that will be worth three points, as opposed to the standard one point. There will be two separate spots six feet behind the 3-point line, one before and one after the rack of balls at the top of the key. The specialty balls will rest on branded pedestals on top of Mtn Dew markings on the court. To facilitate the change, the 3-Point Contest is going from 60 to 70 seconds. The evolution of the NBA’s 3-Point Contest comes in Mtn Dew’s second year title sponsoring the event. Mtn Dew title sponsored the Rising Stars Challenge in ’18 and ’19, via its Kickstart and Ice brands, respectively. It was eager to also get involved in the 3-Point Contest, which has had several title sponsors throughout recent years. The brand signed on just a few weeks before the ’19 event and did not have time to make any big changes. However, PepsiCo Head of Sports Marketing & Partnerships Justin Toman said the plan was always to put the Mtn Dew stamp on the contest. “We knew where it was going to go,” he said.
GIVEN THE GREEN LIGHT: NBA Senior VP/Marketing Partnerships Kerry Tatlock said talks about experimenting with the contest began shortly after All-Star Weekend last year. The league was not opposed to adding branding into the actual competition, so long as it was authentic and expanded the competition instead of feeling like a stunt. “Once we had the right concept, the branding overlay followed from there,” Tatlock said. “It’s all very organic to the integration.” Toman added, “It wasn't anything difficult that we had to sell them on. … We've been aligned with the goal of making this thing more exciting from the start.” Mtn Dew Courtside Studios will return for its fourth All-Star Weekend, serving as a fan event in Chicago’s West Loop featuring players from Mtn Dew’s NBA roster like 76ers C Joel Embiid and Pelicans F Zion Williamson. Mtn Dew parent company PepsiCo is in its fifth season as an NBA partner.