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    Wieden + Kennedy Launch Melo's New M8 Shoe in Epic Fashion

    The Jordan Brand recently teamed up with Wieden + Kennedy to launch Carmelo Anthony's new shoe in spectacular fashion along the Hudson River in New York City. The two parties collaborated to put on an M8 NYC Flight Event at Pier 54 that was highlighted by an unannounced projection show alongside a 3-story building that featuring an animated Carmelo Anthony dribbling, dunking, and walking on water.

    The Jordan Brand set the stage by having Nas perform a live set for the 2,500 guests in attendance and featured a stuntman jumping out of a helicopter into the Hudson River before Carmelo Anthony's image appeared in spectacular fashion.

    Wieden + Kennedy's use of projection technology demonstrates how brands can leverage iconic locations at night in new ways to launch products, conduct guerrilla marketing activity, or make a memorable splash.

    Check out the amazing product launch display below and click here for more information:



    Bowling Green Unveils Its New Basketball Arena with a Rap Video

    Bowling Green State University recently launched its new basketball facility, the Stroh Center, in a truly viral fashion. The Athletics Department turned to a sophomore student named Mikey "Rosco" Blair, a senior gospel singer named Rachel Willingham, and a company called Madhouse Productions to produce an official music video to unveil the University's new state-of-the-start facility in a truly unconventional fashion.

    The result? The Athletics Department's loose, creative mentality created a sensational viral video that has attracted the attention of ESPN, USA Today,, and more. While the video just surpassed the 25,000 mark, it's well on its way to becoming a hot topic of discussion within all of sports.

    In the video, Rosco pays homage to several of the school's major donors and philanthropists, all-time legends, and new basketball facilities. The high quality video features several viewpoints of the Stroh Center and lyrics that are simple, yet catchy.

    Check out the terrific venue launch video below:



    Go Inside the Huddle to Deliver Unprecedented Access for Fans

    The University of Washington football team gave its fanbase unprecedented access during the team's annual Spring Game by outfitting quarterbacks Keith Price and Nick Montana with a helmet cam and mic.

    The result? The Washington Huskies football team was able to effectively convey to fans what it's like to lead a football team during a game, including:

    • Calling plays in the huddle
    • Taking snaps from center
    • Identifying defensive schemes
    • Scrambling on the run
    • Listening to coaches provide instruction
    • Staring down defenders
    • Throwing passes
    • Motivating teammates
    • Scoring touchdowns

    The insider video, posted by Huskies coach Steve Sarkisian on YouTube, truly serves as a best-in-class execution that should be benchmarked by all sports organizations (either during practice, Spring games, exhibition games, etc.). The video has attracted 44,000+ views. Check it out below:


    Sarkisian recently followed up the Huskies' "Inside the Huddle" access with two (2) terrific Fall Camp 2011 videos, profiling the football team behind-the-scenes. Check them out below:


    A special thanks to Rising Star Mark Gallo of Anheuser-Busch for his insights and contributions to this column!


    Heineken Lets Fans Interact With "The Entrance" on YouTube

    Over the past few months, Heineken's commercial "The Entrance" has universally been embraced by millions of consumers across the world. The commercial, created in tandem with Wieden + Kennedy Amsterdam, has attracted over 1 million views on YouTube and millions of more impressions on television.

    However, while the campaign proved to be very successful in North America, Heineken took the campaign to another level in Taiwan. Heineken launched an interactive YouTube videowhere consumers can engage with various elements of the commercial. By providing consumers with an opportunity to have control of their experience viewing "The Entrance", Heineken can likely generate higher brand/campaign recall and a higher viewer propensity to share. 

    The video's interactivity demonstrates how marketers have only begun to scratch the surface when it comes to fully utilizing YouTube as a messaging and engagement platform - especially in relation to the sports.

    Check out the engaging YouTube campaign below!

    (Please note: You will need to input your date of birth for verification purposes before viewing).


    A special thanks to Cameron North of AdSport for his insights and contributions to this column!


    FC Barcelona Uses Humor to Welcome Cesc Fabregas Back Home

    Over the past few years, teams have certainly become smarter and much more creative when it comes to marketing during free agency. With millions of dollars in merchandise sales, ticket sales, and other concessions at stake, teams are generating fan interest and awareness a number of ways.  

    FC Barcelona recently unveiled one of the most unique approaches when it launched a cartoon vignette to welcome Cesc Fabregas, one of the greatest soccer players in the world, to their organization. The vignette features a mix of humor, pop culture, and creativity to welcome their new star player back home.

    Check it out below and consider how your organization can capitalize on a similar business approach during free agency!


    adidas Turns a Chinese Subway Station Into an Outdoor Gym

    Entities associated with the UFC, boxing, and other sports related to mixed martial arts should take a close look at a branding tactic that adidas recently displayed in a Chinese subway. adidas generated awareness and excitement amongst subway passengers by turning several giant poles in the subway station into giant punching bags. 

    This marketing stunt would work extremely well to promote premier UFC (and other MMA) events in high-traffic locations and stadiums (wrapping poles in the concourse to promote upcoming events) worldwide.

    Check out adidas' creative execution below:


    Evian Brings Its Roller Babies Commercials Back To Life with a Creative Viral T-Shirt Campaign

    In July 2009, Evian struck gold when it released an Evian Roller Babies commercial that quickly became one of the most successful media campaigns of all-time. The clip, featuring a collection of virtual babies performing a series of stunts on roller skates in conjunction with the brand's tagline "Live Young", attracted nearly 60 million views online and generated a significant amount of buzz for the brand.

    Now, two years after the launch of the Evian Roller Babies, the brand is still capitalizing. Evian launched a "Let's Baby Dance" campaign that enables consumers to film a video of themselves dancing while wearing a virtual baby shirt to become a part of the longest music video ever produced. The microsite includes tabs where consumers can purchase t-shirts and ringtones utilized in the campaign and download an official iPhone application.

    Evian is supporting the campaign with a fully-branded Facebook Page and YouTube page that host a series of entertaining virals. Check out two of the "Baby Inside" virals produced to date:


    Evian even produced a version in support of the 2011 Wimbledon tournament, in which the brand was an official sponsor:


    The campaign is extremely simple yet brilliant because it demonstrates how teams and brands alike can bring commercial campaigns to life online and potentially capitalize on new streams of revenue from apparel/licensing. If a team/league were able to benchmark this effort and generate buzz around an item of apparel online, they could surely create demand and capitalize on licensing.

    Check out some snapshots of the "Lets Baby Dance" microsite below:

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    Use Humor To Engage Fans During the Offseason

    Humor plays a large role in sporting events across the world, on and off the playing field. From the antics of players and coaches to humorous performances by fans on the jumbotron, humor is everywhere on gameday.

    As sports properties look to produce new content to engage fans during the offseason, they should consider creating a viral piece that highlights humorous moments on and off the court throughout the season (or over the course of a tournament/event day). From television broadcasts to video board footage, this could actually be a relatively easy task for many teams to compile and produce.

    Enclosed below a recent clip from an unofficial source that highlights all the hilarious moments from the 2011 Wimbledon tournament. The clip generated 80,000+ views in less than 2 weeks on YouTube, signaling the fact that fans enjoy consuming this type of content.

    Check it out below:


    adidas Drives Store Traffic With Shoe Box Marketing Stunt

    adidas celebrated the grand opening of its flagship store in Melbourne, Australia with a creative marketing stunt designed to drive excitement and foot traffic. adidas erected several giant shoe boxes throughout the mall and gave unsuspecting consumers passing by a left shoe with a voucher attached that they could redeem for a free pair of shoes of that style inside the adidas store. 

    The adidas marketing stunt was creatively executed and served as a great way to generate buzz and excitement at a relatively low cost. Check it out below:

    It would be interesting to see professional sports teams benchmark this marketing/PR stunt to drive awareness and excitement for new merchandise items throughout the season. Teams could set up mystery boxes throughout the concourse (staffed by interns) giving away free apparel and premium giveaways - a tactic designed to drive traffic and sales in the official team shop.


    Red Bull Uses a Unique F1 Event to Support Japan's Tsunami Recovery Efforts 

    Red Bull Racing recently held a tremendous F1 event in Japan in an effort to help re-energize the country following the devastating tsunami events in March 2011.

    On June 4th-5th, Red Bull Racing teamed up with driver Sebastien Buemi to host an unforgettable showcar appearance in the streets of Japan and complemented the event by raising funds for earthquake relief efforts by selling limited edition t-shirts that generated proceeds for devastated areas.

    The unique Red Bull Racing events attracted a crowd of 25,000 spectators and media outlets to the Big Beach Music Festival Makuhari to see Buemi steering his powerful Formula 1 vehicle through a crowded marketplace. The event marked the first time that an F1 vehicle had been driven through the streets of Japan.

    The following day, Sebastien Buemi and the Red Bull Racing team put on a thrilling display at the Yokohama Motomachi Shopping Street, where 11,000 fans witnessed a series of burnouts, turning donuts, and straightline runs first-hand. Red Bull's F1 stunt generated notable coverage throughout the country and was picked up on a number of major media outlets.

    Check out two videos that capture the events below:



    A special thanks to Yuki Suzuki of Japan for her insights and contributions to this column!


    The NBA Strikes Gold with a Mini Movie Series

    In recent years, the National Basketball Association (NBA) has done a remarkable job producing a series of mini movies that truly magnify the league's biggest games and events of the season. Each of the mini movies provide fans with an all-access look that creates an elevated sense of excitement, drama, and star power.

    The NBA's mini movies have been very well received in the online community. The league's NBA Finals Game 1 mini movie attracted 215K+ views in just two (2) days and the 2011 NBA All-Star Game mini movie attracted nearly 750K impresssions.

    It would be great to see more leagues and major events replicate the NBA's mini movie concept - notably the NCAA. There is so much drama and excitement surrounding March Madness and the BCS Bowl Games that it would be great to see more of the behind-the-scenes happenings first hand.

    Check out a breakdown of some of the NBA's mini movies below:








    Nike Turns to Fans on Twitter to Devise a Slogan for US Soccer

    Nike looked to capitalize on the U.S. Men's National Soccer Team's recent international friendly against a renowned Argentina team at the New Meadowlands Stadium by creating an expansive "Red All Over" campaign.

    A few weeks leading up to the match, Nike turned to soccer fans on Twitter to create a motto that would serve as the focal point of its "Red All Over" campaign. Nike encouraged soccer enthusiasts from across the world to submit their ideas over a five-day period using the hashtag #redallover. The campaign proved to be extremely successful, with thousands of entries pouring each day.

    Ultimately, Nike found their answer for the campaign - a slogan that stood out from all the rest. The slogan, "Indivisible", was submitted by William Bachmann II of Orlando, FL, who uses the Twitter handle @WBachmann2. The slogan came from an unlikely source but proved to be exactly what Nike was looking for with the campaign. The slogan was sewn onto the jerseys of all the U.S. players for the match and soon became a storyline that captured the world's attention.

    Note: As part of the campaign, fans were encouraged to wear red to New Meadowlands Stadium for the game on March 26th in support.

    Check out a video detailing the promotional initiative below:


    The Whitecaps Generate Fan Excitement for their Season Launch with a 30-Day Countdown

    The start of the 2011 Major League Soccer season marked a renewed rivalry series between the Seattle Sounders, Vancouver Whitecaps, and the Portland Timbers. All three (3) soccer clubs have enjoyed 30+ years of history and success but haven't competed against one another since the days of the NASL... 31 years afgo.

    Soccer has been a huge success for Major League Soccer in the Northwest over the past two years since the inception the Seattle Sounders FC. In 2010, the team attracted 36,173 fans on average and generated some of the league's highest television ratings. Soccer fever has surely spread to Portland and Vancouver, where both clubs are experiencing a significant amount of success selling season ticket packages as well as suites.

    The Vancouver Whitecaps in particular embarked on an aggressive "30-Day Countdown" marketing initiative that featured thirty consecutive days of virals introducing the team to the city of Vancouver, decorating landmarks, interviewing celebrities, displaying 3D billboard projections, and more.

    Check out the Whitecaps terrific 30-Day Countdown below ... notably videos #7, #1, $10, and #6!

    ... And here's a great Sounders FC video to get you ready for the 2011 Major League Soccer season!


    Lynx Uses Augmented Reality to Make a Splash at Victoria Station

    Unilever recently teamed up with Bartle Bogle Hegarty (BBH) to create a captivating augmented reality campaign at London's Victoria Station in an effort to drive buzz and awareness for the Lynx brand (an extension of Axe in the UK).

    Unilever created an initiative where consumers could stand on a special floormat within Victoria Station and see themselves interacting with virtual Lynx Angels (models) on a giant video board near by. The augmented reality campaign attracted the attention of thousands of consumers passing through the busy locale and served as a great way for the brand to create a viral piece that has generated plenty of buzz in the digital realm.

    Unilever's campaign is very interesting because it is a tactic that could be replicated by professional sports organizations looking to make a splash in a high-traffic location prior to the season, during key events (All-Star weekend, etc.), or during the offseason. Teams could work with a local agency to create digital footage of players and embed it in an augmented reality campaign that truly engages fans at a moment when they least expect it.

    Check out the Lynx Angels campaign below:


    Vodafone Unveils a New Chassis With the Help From Fans

    Vodafone McLaren Mercedes recently held a ceremony at Berlin's Potsdamer Platz to unveil its new MP4-226 F1 chassis. But instead of hosting a typical ceremonial event, Vodafone incorporated fans into the festivities and captured the entire event on camera.

    Vodafone called on dozens of competition winners, fans, and customers to deliver various parts of the chassis to a prominent stage area where the F1 vehicle was gradually built one component at a time. Fans rolled in tires and carried various F1 car parts to the surprise of hundreds of onlookers taking in all of the action. As various elements were delivered, Vodafone drivers Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button assembled the final parts to reveal the team's new F1 chassis.

    Vodafone captured all of the action and created a 2:31 viral to share the event with the rest of the world. In a matter of weeks, the unique video garnered 199,000+ votes.

    Check it out below: