CBS Outdoor Delivers a Best-In-Class Billboard Campaign for the Twins

CBS Outdoor recently posted a tremendous video that showcases the work involved with creating a captivating outdoor billboard campaign to promote the grand opening of the Target Field in 2010. The video details all of the work involved with the installation phase of the OOH project, providing viewers with an inside look at all of the elements involved with creating a best-in-class campaign to promote the Twins new home for years to come.

Check out the video below: 

The Brewers Drive Season Ticket Sales By Offering 40 Fantastic Prizes

The Milwaukee Brewers are supporting their 2011 season ticket sales efforts with a "Fantastic 40" initiative that rewards 40 season ticket holders with 40 unique prizes and experiences over the course of 40 days (January 17th - February 15th). The terrific concept rewards all fans who sign up to become season ticket holders with the organization. Once fans' payments are received in full, they are automatically entered in the promotion, which offers some truly incredible prizes and experiences.

The Brewers are promoting the initiative by announcing the daily winners on a digital billboard in Milwaukee and posting an announcement, including a photo of the custom billboard, on their official Facebook page. The live billboard, complemented by a daily Facebook post, serve as a great call-to-action to entice fans and drive buzz in the weeks leading up to the season.

With an offseason of exciting acquisitions, ticket promotions, and fan-friendly incentives, the Brewers organization sold 1 million tickets for the 2011 season by January 19th, matching the earliest date that the club has ever reached that milestone. Season ticket and 9-Pack sales were deemed to be a priority for the club heading into the offseason.The Brewers tremendous "Fantastic 40" prize offerings include:

  1. Sausage for a year delivered by the Klement's Famous Racing Sausages
  2. Your photo on every single Brewers ticket for one game
  3. A game with Brewers legend Gorman Thomas in a club suite
  4. Groundskeeper at Miller Park during a game
  5. Experience a friendly game of catch with a Milwaukee Brewers reliever (10 pitches)
  6. Four (4) games of luxury seating in the Gehl Club, including a gourmet buffet
  7. Autographed bat and jersey from your favorite Brewers player
  8. Take the ultimate slide down Bernie's Slide at Miller Park
  9. $500 in concessions vouchers
  10. A game with nine (9) guests in the owner's suite with Brewers executives
  11. Watch batting practice with five (5) friends in the bullpen
  12. Co-present a jersey to a Brewers All-Star for the 2011 MLB All-Star game
  13. Win a private party in the visitor's clubhouse with (19) guests
  14. Announce the starting lineup over the Miller Park P.A. system
  15. Surprise your sweetheart with roses from the Brewers mascot on Valentines Day
  16. Take a tour and control the Miller Park roof
  17. Sit in the owner's field level seats with (3) friends
  18. Win an exclusive hitting lesson with tips from Brewers legend Dale Sveum
  19. Win a trip to the 2011 MLB Draft, including airfare, hotel, and a spot at the Draft
  20. Win a club suite for (20) with complimentary food
  21. Win pizza for a year from Palermo's
  22. Run the Klement's Sausage Race during a Brewers game
  23. Win a $1,000 private shopping spree at the Brewers team store
  24. A party with Brewers GM Doug Melvin and (9) guests in a club suite
  25. Autographed baseballs signed by each member of the Brewers starting rotation
  26. Opportunity to play video games on the Brewers new scoreboard
  27. A fully catered tailgate for (20) guests, including tickets to a game
  28. A party in the Dew Deck for (19) guests, including food and beverage
  29. An opportunity to manage the Mini Sausage Race for a Sunday game
  30. A chance to sit on a Wrigley Field rooftop with (3) friends for a Brewers/Cubs game
  31. A chance to sit in the owner's box at Wrigley Field (including train fares to the game)
  32. Experience a full broadcast in the Brewers TV booth, including the post-game show
  33. A chance to get a photo taken with the entire Brewers baseball club
  34. A VIP seat at the head table of the Brewers SSH Luncheon
  35. A pre-game dinner and (3) innings of a game in the Brewers press box
  36. A chance to watch a Brewers game live from the control room
  37. Autographed baseballs from each Opening Day starter
  38. A private party in the club level board room
  39. A softball game at Helfaer Field, including food and beverage for (20) guests
  40. A major league contract for a day, including a full uniform plus pay



The Future of Stadium Signage - For Auto Partners

Honda recently teamed up with GT Media, JC Decaux, and Puca to develop an innovative outdoor messaging campaign designed to engage young, male consumers and demonstrate the innovative attributes of its automobiles.

To generate buzz around the launch of the new Civic R Series in Ireland, Honda displayed a large, interactive billboard in the trendy streets of Dublin that allowed consumers to actually start the car (featured on the billboard) by texting "START" to a designated shortcode (51500). Upon doing so, the call-to-action signalled the lights on the car to light up and smoke to exit from the car's exhaust pipes on the billboard.

Consumers that engaged with the billboard received a bounce back link to a Honda mobile brochure, providing additional details about the car, and also had an opportunity to receive a free ringtone of the car's engine roar if they engaged with the billboard via Bluetooth technology. The four-week campaign ran during June 2010.

Honda's innovative billboard technology serves as a great benchmark for sports organizations looking for new ways to take their signage to the next level, notably in baseball. While a billboard with interactive elements could not be run in-stadium during play, there is plenty of down time during games (between innings, pre-game, post-game, pitching changes, etc.) when brands could engage with fans via SMS technology without having to feature personnel on-site to operate the signage.

Look for a number of sports organizations to begin experimenting with SMS technology to take their stadium signage and brand activation to the next level!

Source: Puca

Reebok Leverages Nicole Scherzinger and Digital Billboards in New Ways

Reebok recently teamed up with M&C Saatchi Sport & Entertainment to launch its new ZigTech trainer in the UK with a magnificent live digital billboard show. Reebok featured Nicole Scherzinger, the popular lead singer of the Pussycat Dolls, on the billboard via a live stream interacting with a crowd of consumers on hand to watch the publicity stunt.

Per, Reebok featured Scherzinger on hand for an open photo session and then escorted her to a private area behind the screen where she interacted with the public via two way cameras that were attached to the digital billboard. The event signaled how brands can utilize digital out-of-home billboards to leverage their athlete/celebrity endorsements in new ways in conjunction with special events, product launches, gameday events, etc.

As the technology becomes more readily adopted, team partners can leverage this to take their retail player appearances to new heights as well as special gameday events for large crowds of fans. The stunt was terrific because Reebok demonstrated how to bring a relatively static medium to life at one of the most notable shopping centers in the United Kingdom.

Check it out below:

Looking for a New Way to Sell Season Tickets?

If your organization is looking to create a new OOH campaign to sell season tickets, consider creating billboards that say, "Looking for a Sign to Buy Season Tickets This Year? Here it Is". Organizations can take this call-to-action to the next level by accompanying it with a special promotional offer (discount on tickets, free premium item giveaway, unique experience, etc.).

Just remember - if you go ahead and use this idea... just remember to tell people where you found it!

Bertucci's Hits a Home Run with Boston Billboard

Small businesses looking for ways to leverage local sports properties without owning rights to marks just need to think creatively to capitalize on fan affinity   

Bertucci's, a Northborough, MA company that runs a chain of Italian restaurants, recently found a unique way to capitalize on it's restaurants proximity to Fenway Park. The company is featuring a giant billboard under the iconic Citgo sign just two blocks behind Fenway Park that says, "Free Dinner for Everyone at the Ballpark If a Homerun Hits This Billboard (If Not, Distinctive Deals Start at Just $9.99)".

While the billboard's claim is outlandish (because a home run would never travel that far), it is an extremely relevant messaging piece to thousands of Red Sox fans passing by the sign to hop on the subway after taking in a game at Fenway. The piece demonstrates how local businesses can capitalize on professional/collegiate sports taking place nearby without owning rights to marks or mentioning affiliated terms (e.g. Red Sox, Fenway, etc.). Check out the creative billboard campaign below:


Whoever is behind Bertucci's outdoor campaigns is a pure marketing genius. In 2007, the chain featured a billboard that mirrored the look of the city's transit signs, subconsciously drawing the eye of consumers passing by. It was an extremely creative tactic that attracted the attention of several media outlets, including


Source: PCE 2210 Flickr Page

Hunky Dory Promotes Rugby in a Whole New Light

Are you looking for new marketing campaign concepts? Are you looking for new ways to target select fan bases?

Hunky Dorys recently launched a new Irish Rugby messaging campaign that has attracted worldwide attention. How did they do it? The chip brand opted to launch a controversial outdoor messaging campaign that features attractive female rugby players in revealing poses.

The campaign, featured in bus shelters and on billboards across Northern Ireland, is drawing a mix of rave reviews and criticisms from parties across the globe. Either way, the campaign has worked - it has driven a significant amount of buzz and attention to the brand.

The only problem? As an Irish Rugby Football Union spokesman recently said, Hunky Dory has no direct affiliation with the Irish Rugby Football Union and Irish Rugby - they are just simply sponsors of the Navan Rugby team.


Looking to Feature New Outfield Signage Elements?

Are you looking to feature new, interactive elements at your games? Are you looking to incorporate 3D signage into the game day experience?

The Grant Sign Group is a company based out of Canada that has been delivering outdoor advertising experiences for over 35 years. The company is considered an industry leader in a variety of outdoor advertising sectors and is beginning to do more and more in the 3D space.

While the company's offerings primarily cater to businesses looking to promote their products and retail locations, they recently created a signage piece that can directly cater to teams (as shown below). The company created a 3D billboard display for Pattison Outdoor (an outdoor marketing agency) that features a fan's mouth moving up and down.

The signage piece would make for a tremendous, interactive outfield signage piece (if a ball went in the mouth, situated above the outfield wall, one fan would win jackpot or free dentist trips for life) and/or a creative way to drive fan attention to messaging in the concourse level. Check it out below!

Take Your Outdoor Sports Digital Efforts to New Heights

Are you looking for new ways to engage consumers in outdoor settings? Are you looking to capitalize on the growing usage of mobile phones?

Take a quick look at a terrific outdoor digital initiative DDB recently executed on behalf of McDonald's in Stockholm. The outdoor game tasked consumers with taking a picture on their cell phone of menu items that bounced and soared past the screen. Can you say engaging?

Now take a quick moment to think of all the applications this could have in the sports space. A team that prominently features a similar digital display piece on the facade of their stadium/arena could create a similar offering that tasks fans with taking camera pictures of:

  • Dropping tickets - A team could allocate a block of 100 tickets per game discounted at 50% off to fans who take a picture of a dropping ticket on their cell phone and take it to the Will Call counter for purchase
  • Dropping balls - Teams could make this item very hard to catch (fast speeds) and offer autograph merchandise to any fans who are able to take a picture of it on their phone
  • Dropping concessions (hot dogs, popcorn, etc.) - Teams could offer free/discounted concessions items to fans who are able to take pictures of these items on their mobile phone
  • Partner Discounts (dropping movie tickets, free gas vouchers, project starters, etc.)
  • Dropping dollar bills - Teams can offer $5 bills that are redeemable for a $20 purchase in the team store on game day
  • Dropping Mascot - Teams can offer fans, who take a picture of the mascot soaring across the screen, the chance to partake in unique experiences at the ballpark (promotions, video board cameos, behind-the-scenes tours, promotional giveaway opportunities, etc.)

Digital boards located outside stadium venues offering similar digital games could serve as a great way to reward fans who aren't able to make it into the game or come to attend a watch party. Consider this tactic when you are looking for new ways to reward those attending games (pre-game and post-game), not attending games (premier games, watch parties), and are looking for a reason to just stop by and check out the stadium during the week.

Bring Your Out-of-Home Campaigns to Life with Steam!

Are you looking for new ways to leverage team partners? Are you looking for ways to bring the excitement of your games to life for fans during the work week?

McDonald's recently teamed up with Cossette, an advertising agency based out of Vancouver, Canada to create a stimulating out-of-home campaign designed to drive awareness for the chain's coffee offerings. Cossette built a steam machine to fit inside a bus shelter that let off periodic bursts of steam, revealing a hidden message about a McDonald's free coffee promotion.

The creative outdoor campaign, executed to perfection, offers some parallels for sports marketers looking for new ways to stimulate consumer awareness:

  • Teams can promote an upcoming season (and leverage a home improvement/grill partner) by featuring a branded miniature grill giving off steam that reveals the slogan, "It's Time to Kickoff the Season... Are You Ready?"
  • NASCAR (and/or participating teams/sponsors) can feature a visual of a car smoking with a captivating message
  • Teams can feature of a picture of players running out of the tunnel with smoke (e.g. steam) exploding from the visual (think of the Miami Hurricanes running out of the tunnel with the steam)
  • The Miami Heat (and teams with related fire monikers) could feature an outdoor ad with steam to show opponents cooling off
  • Teams can leverage coffee vendors (as seen in the ad) by touting exclusive season-long promotional offers

The Raptors Get Creative With Their OOH Marketing

Are you looking for creative out-of-home marketing ideas? Are you looking for ways to differentiate yourself in the marketplace?

In 2009, the Toronto Raptors created a tremendous out-of-home marketing campaign that drew the attention of many representatives in the industry. The campaign was so well executed by Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment, it was honored by the National Sports Forum (NSF) as the Best Out-of-Home campaign in sports in 2009.

Check out some of the organization's creative OOH marketing tactics below:

Click HERE for a list of some other NSF ADchievement Award Winners.

Celebrate Team History with a Magnetic Billboard

Are you looking for ways to honor your team's history and traditions? Are you looking for new ways to engage fans on gameday?

Sports organizations looking to honor their team history in an engaging manner should consider benchmarking a recent tactic Saatchi & Saatchi Tel Aviv created for the HOT cable TV network in Israel. In an effort to position HOT as the network with the hottest celebrities and shows on television, Saatchi & Saatchi created a 140 meter long billboard in a suburban neighborhood that featured 6,000+ magnetic cutouts of entertainment celebrities.

Consumers walking by the billboard were encouraged to peel off the magnetic celebrity cutouts - a tactic that was very well received. According to records, the magnetic billboard was stripped bare by consumers after just two (2) hours (a process that reoccured several times). The innovative billboard campaign drew the attention of major media channels across the globe.

How can this idea translate in the sports space?

Sports organizations can consider creating a team history wall that features hundreds of magnetic cutouts of past players, coaches, historic moments, logo/uniform changes, mascots, and fans. Teams can encourage fans to "take home a piece of history" or bring a similar concept to life on their team home page (where fans can select different pictorials on a digital wall that explain the relevance of historic moments, former players and personnel, etc.). Creating an "interactive mural" could serve as a great way to help fans appreciate all of the great moments in team history.

Teams can consider partnering on the initiative with a corporate partner whose mission statement plays off the the terms "family", "tradition", "history" and/or is looking for new ways to engage fans. Teams can incite potential partners by placing brand logos/URL with a call-to-action on each of the magnetic pieces that fans take home or redeem at retail.

Costs for the magnetic billboard project were not disclosed. Check out a video of the billboard below:

Use Billboards to Capitalize on Team Affinity...

Are you looking for new ways to capitalize on team affiliation? Are you looking for creative tactics to promote a partnership in the local marketplace?

Brand managers looking to capitalize on team affinity should consider modeling the Dunkin' Donuts guerrilla billboard strategy detailed below. With more sports organizations turning to outdoor media to promote ticket sales, community initiatives, and re-branding initiatives, sponsors have a unique opportunity to drive affiliation awareness by leveraging neighboring billboards.

By simply using an arrow technique (as pictured below), sponsors and ambush marketers can imply association with sports organizations through outdoor billboards. The trouble is often the planning ahead of time (knowing where and when the team's billboards will go up) but most uncertainty can be limited by analyzing historical placement.

Sponsors can drive home team affiliation using a variety of messaging campaigns:

  • Great Teams (arrow pointing to team logo) Drink Great Beverages (arrow pointing to sponsor logo)
  • Go Big (arrow point to team sponsor logo) or Go Home (pointing to a competitor's logo who was recently eliminated from the playoffs)
  • The "Heavenly" Association
  • Great Team (arrow pointing to team logo), Great Beer
  • Fast Teams (arrow pointing to team logo) Drive Fast Cars (arrow pointing to sponsor logo)

Billboard of the Week - James Ready Beer

Are you looking to create a unique billboard campaign that engages consumers? Are you looking to take your out-of-home messaging campaigns to the next level?

In 2009, the Canadian-based James Ready Beer Company, created a captivating billboard campaign that rewarded consumers for their participation. Priding itself on being a discount lager, the company created a billboard campaign that asked consumers to it save a buck by submitting pictures of what James Ready beer means to them. Here is a quick video that profiles the award-winning campaign:

Universities looking to build their brand in the local marketplace (and engage with their avid fanbase) should consider creating similar campaigns that enable fans to share their passion!

Billboard of the Week - Chick-fil-A

Are you looking for ways to leverage B2B partnerships? Are you looking for new ways to promote your product in a unique way?

Over the past few months, Chick-Fil-A has featured a very creative billboard along I-85 when passing through Atlanta, Georgia. The billboard features two (2) of the company's signature cows finishing a project on an Etch-a-Sketch board that spells out "Beef Iz Sketchy". While Chick-Fil-A likely does not have a partnership with Etch-A-Sketch (it would be interesting to see if they had to acquire rights to marks, etc. for this ad) it does raise the questions:

  • Have you ever considered aligning with a B2B partner to devise a creative billboard campaign?
  • With signage and billboard inventory space often rare (and valuable) outside stadium venues, have you ever thought to team up with one of the organization's other partners on a campaign that would resonate with fans and would benefit both brands?

For example, if both an airline partner and rental car provider were targeting fans traveling in for a game, aren't there synergies that exist where the partners could align to create an interesting (and entertaining) billboard campaign? Or multiple brands that are focused on targeting the same demographics of consumers (e.g. Gillette/National Guard targeting young adults, etc.). 

Have we begun to see partners interested in sharing signage inventory (either buying half the season and selling the other half to another partner if interested or leveraging an actual piece of static signage to push multiple brands?). These tactics are currently taking place in NASCAR today but it is yet to be seen in the traditional sports signage space. Are properties even willing to entertain this?

Consider new ways to collaborate on B2B messaging campaigns that can provide better results for your brand!