When marketers generally think of "fan tailgating" they often conjure images of fans grilling, tossing the football, throwing back some beers, and relaxing with friends outside their car in the parking lot.
Well let me introduce you to the new wave of fan tailgating... SBGTMS.
John Canaday, Jeff Handler, and Justin Compton have taken fan tailgating to a whole new level in Charlotte, NC by creating SBGTMS (Super Bowl Goes Through Morehead St.), a tailgating club for Carolina Panthers fans, Charlotte enthusiasts, and persons looking to just have a great time. The trio has developed an innovative membership platform that integrates local corporate partners and has evolved into an event that is as big as the Carolina Panthers games come gameday.
The three (3) SBGTMS founders formed local trade deals with Chipotle, Owen's Bagel and Deli, Quiznos, and Rudino's Pizza & Grinders to drive membership benefits and the scene of events for each of the Panthers' ten (10) home games and related events. In 2008, the group offered watch parties while the team was on the road at local establishments (Loft 5321, George Herman's, Alley Cat) and even hosted an end-of-the-year banquet, awarding tailgate attendees for select achievements...
SBGTMS is also unique in the fact that it is actually a residential tailgate, taking place in a neighborhood adjacent to Bank of America Stadium (rather than the usual stadium parking lot). SBGTMS operates as a non-profit, reinvesting all revenues back into the tailgating experience, and counts 120+ persons as official members, with guests traveling in from all across the globe (the farthest traveler in 2007-08 was from Vancouver, BC). The tailgate has attracted the likes of Catman, the official fan of the Carolina Panthers, and received media coverage at its annual banquet.
Canaday, Handler, and Compton have constructed a 19-page Power Point deck that is distributed to members and their friends/family each year come SBGTMS renewal time. Memberships range from Out-of-Towner packages ($39) to Platinum Blue packages ($149). Member benefits include:
- Official SBGTMS t-shirt (personalized with name and number)
- Personalized SBGTMS pint glass
- SBGTMS Membership Rewards Card (provides members with discounts (free combo/% of meal) at SBGTMS' local corporate partners
- All-You-Can Eat and Drink on Gameday (ten (10) gamedays)
- Individual tailgates are sponsored by each of SBGTMS' corporate pillar partners (i.e. SBGTMS powered by Chipotle features a spread of burritos; Quiznos sponsors a tray of subs; Owen's Bagel & Deli sponsors a breakfast bagel spread; Rudino's Pizza & Grinders sponsors a spread of food)
Gameday tailgates feature:
- The Official SBGTMS porch banner
- Supporting banners/materials from local corporate partners
- Quinny, the Tailgate mascot
- "Take Me Out" - the official anthem of SBGTMS
- Performances by U-Phonik, the official band of SBGTMS
- "Burritos for a Year" prize from Chipotle and weekly raffle items
- Eating Competitions
- A Date Auction (with proceeds benefiting the V Foundation)
- Kids Day
- A "Grillmastor", who travels to the tailgates from Asheville, NC
- VIP Driveway Parking / Shuttle Service
- and last but not least... the Panthers Watch Party!