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    The WTA Profiles Star Players with Wiki-What?! Features

    The Women's Tennis Association (WTA) recently created a terrific "Wiki-What?!" viral series that provides fans with a unique perspective of their favorite tennis stars. The series features the WTA quizzing tennis greats on a range of information and topics featured on their Wikipedia page.

    The Wiki-What?! feature serves as an extremely easy, yet effective way for teams to produce unique shareable content that strengthens the connection between players and fans and capitalizes on the power of social media.

    Kim Clijsters Feature

    Following Clijsters first Australian Open title in January, the WTA was amazed by the fact that her Wikipedia page was updated within a matter of seconds. As a result, the WTA decided to quiz Kim on how well she knows herself - according to the facts detailed on her Wikipedia page. Check it out below:


    Daniela Hantuchova Feature

    With a multitude of information about Daniela Hantuchova on the Internet, the WTA decided that it would be fun to quiz the Slovak star on herself (based on information posted on her Wikipedia page). Check it out below:


    Red Bull Turns Its Soccer Arena Into a Snowboarder's Dream

    Team marketers looking for new ways to utilize their stadium venues to generate revenues and buzz during the offseason should consider benchmarking a recent tactic implemented by Red Bull. During the MLS offseason, Red Bull turned its venue, Red Bull Arena in Harrison, NJ, into an ultimate playground for several elite snowboarders.

    As part of a Red Bull Weather Warriors initiative, Red Bull allowed snowboarders Hans and Nils Mindnich to host a snowboarding session inside Red Bull Arena and caught all of the action on camera.

    Check it out below:


    ING's "Human Billboard" Campaign Has Sports Implications

    Sports organizations looking for new ways to make a huge splash in the offseason with a nominal marketing budget should consider benchmarking a terrific campaign recently implemented by ING Direct in Italy.

    ING Direct had discovered that word-of-mouth referrals by existing customers served as a key driver for bringing in new business. ING looked to bring this notion to life by teaming up with Leo Burnett Milan to create a "Human Billboard" campaign that featured real customers sitting and standing atop billboards, strapped onto the side of city buses, and positioned on elevated displays in high-traffic areas inside a city setting.

    The campaign proved to be tremendously popular, as consumers passing by the displays interacted with the brand activists, creating banter that was filmed and featured in an effective advertising campaign. 

    The concept of the "Human Billboard" could have a number of implications in the sports space. Minor league teams looking to drive interest and awareness in the local marketplace could leverage season ticket holders and enthusiastic supporters in a similar fan-centric campaign. Marathons, triathlons and other major events could also implement a similar promotional concept to show how "real" participants are. Apparel companies and other manufacturers of products endemic to sports could also consider benchmarking the ING Direct campaign to bring product launches to life, etc.

    Check out the terrific campaign below!



    UFC Unveils Live Broadcast on Facebook and Interactive UFC.TV Viewing Portal

    UFC recently made two groundbreaking announcements that will surely enhance the at-home viewing experience for fans. UFC announced that it will host a landmark broadcast of the Yamamoto vs. Johnson fight at UFC 126 live on Facebook tonight (February 5th) and it also unveiled a new interactive portal that allows UFC fans to have complete control of their viewing experience.

    Check out how UFC is revolutionizing the fan viewing experience below:


    Tonight (February 5th), UFC is set to stream a live broadcast of the Kid Yamamoto vs. Demetrious Johnson fight at UFC 126 live on at 8:25pm EST.


    UFC launched an online interactive portal,, that allows viewers to have complete control of their viewing experience. offers:

    • Six (6) live video feeds
    • Multiple simultaneous feeds through Picture-in-Picture and Quad View
    • Built-in DVR controls (to pause, rewind, and fast-forward fights with a click of a mouse)
    • Live Audio controls (to hear the live broadcast or audio from the coaches corner)
    • Live chat and Twitter integration
    • Interactive scoring module that allows fans to judge the fight live   


    The Making of a University Athletics Team Poster

    Have you ever wondered how Athletics team posters are made? Or how many hours of labor goes into designing an appropriate look and feel that coincides with the team's brand DNA and team slogan?

    Team posters take hours of expertise and a nice creative touch to produce an outstanding product. Geoffrey Rogers of Old Hat Creative recently created an outstanding five (5) minute time lapse that showcases the eight (8) hours of Photoshop expertise that went in to designing the 2011 Stanford Lacrosse Team Poster. Check it out below:


    And here's another video detailing the creation of the 2010 Florida State football team poster:

    Old Hat Creative is on fire right now with their creative services and out-of-the-box marketing tactics. I would encourage you to check out their site and sign up for their newsletter.


    Red Bull F1 Hits the Streets of Dubai

    Red Bull shocked the city of Dubai in November when it featured a Formula One race car soaring along Shaikh Zayed Road during the early morning hours. Red Bull teamed up with city officials to pull off the stunt, which featured an F1 car reaching speeds of over 297 kph, to the surprise of many consumers who were traveling out and about.

    The PR stunt served as a terrific way for Red Bull to drive buzz in the city of Dubai prior to the Grand Prix at the Yas Marina Circuit. F1 driver Neel Jani put on quite a show for one of the world's fastest growing cities. Check it out below: 


    Old Hat Creative Delivers a Terrific Recap of the Big Chill at the Big House

    Sports properties looking to give their marketing materials, recaps, and videoboard vignettes some flair should take a close look at some of the work that Old Hat Creative is doing on behalf of their partners.

    Old Hat did a tremendous job creating a collection of marketing materials for The Big Chill at the Big House, an outdoor hockey game between the University of Michigan and Michigan State that was played in front of an announced crowd of 104,000+ at Michigan Stadium in December.

    To drive buzz around the event, Old Hat developed:

    • The Big Chill at the Big House Microsite
    • An Intro Video - Click Here to View               
    • A Historical Tribute - Click Here to View
    • A "Pump Up" Video - Click Here to View
    • A Prelude - Click Here to View
    • A Michigan 3D Video - Click Here to View

    But Old Hat's finest work was their recap of The Big Chill at the Big House, which is one of the most original recaps that we have seen in some time! Check it out below:


    NBA Teams Get Creative With Their All-Star Game Campaigns

    The 2011 NBA All-Star Game is right around the corner and NBA teams are doing everything in their power to persuade fans to vote for their star players. As seen in past years, NBA teams have begun to take a very creative approach to their campaigns, as demonstrated with the two "best in class" examples featured below:

    New York Knicks - "#1 Reason to Vote Knicks" Remix

    The Knicks took a creative approach with their All-Star campaign, putting their celebrity fans in control.

    The spot features Donald Trump, Tracy Morgan, cast members from the Jersey Shore, Fabolous, The Miz, Drake, Entourage cast members, Whoopi Goldberg, and fans among others encouraging viewers to get out and vote for Amar'e Stoudemire, Raymond Felton, and Danilo Gallinari into the 2011 NBA All-Star Game. Check out the terrific clip, which has generated 46K+ views, below:

    Memphis Grizzlies - "The Most Interesting Man in the NBA"

    The Memphis Grizzlies created a spoof of Dos Equis' ever-popular commercial campaign featuring "The Most Interesting Man in the World" in an effort to tout Rudy Gay as a deserving candidate for a 2011 NBA All-Star Game nomination. The humorous clip, which includes the tagline "Keep Voting, my friends", uses creativity to effectively escape the clutter of standard All-Star Game campaigns, giving casual basketball fans a reason to vote. Check it out below (30K+ views thus far):

    Look for more creative NBA All-Star campaigns to come!


    Nike Uses Laser Projections to Support Oregon in BCS Title Game

    Nike created a splash on the eve of the 2011 BCS National Championship game by projecting a laser image of the University of Oregon logo onto the side of Camelback Mountain in Scottsdale, Arizona.

    Nike teamed up with Wieden + Kennedy, SportsOne, Inc., Lightwave International, and MacDonald Media to project a giant Oregon logo and the slogan "Just Do It" onto the side of Camelback Mountain for approximately five (5) hours on Sunday night. On the day of the game, Nike was planning on projecting the laser image on the Arena, located across the street from the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale.

    Interesting enough, the distance between the light projection (located at the Bud Light Fiesta Grounds in Scottsdale) and the mountain was a full two (2) miles. The direct diode lasers used were four (4) times the power of typical lasers seen at concerts and large events and were considered the most powerful lasers that Lightwave International had ever projected to date.

    Check out a video detailing the amazing visual illustration below:

    Source: The Oregonian


    Leverage Spin & Win Animations to Engage Sections of Fans

    Sports organizations looking to create new scoreboard entertainment features should take a close look at the "Spin & Win" slot machine animation created by the Austin Toros of the NBA D-League.

    Teams can create similar, engaging animations to serve several purposes:

    • Create a "chance to win" / "scoreboard surprise" moment in-game that (from a perception standpoint) fairly selects and rewards one (1) lucky section in arena 
    • Effectively leverage a casino partner (in countries/markets where gambling activity can be actively promoted in-arena) with an engaging scoreboard promotion that serves as a great engagement and affiliation awareness play
    • Promote a team/corporate partner donation to a select charity on behalf of a designated section
    • Actively promote a section in the stadium/arena receiving a special discount on concessions during the game (or a select period of time during the game)

    Check it out below:


    "Must-See" Site of the Day:

    A few days ago, the New York Knicks officially launched an innovative social media oriented site that has become a hot topic of conversation in the digital sports space. The site,, is a team-operated community that provides real-time social media insights and nuggets of information in a concise, digestible format. offers a tremendous amount of high-quality content in a simple format - two aspects of digital media that fans are looking for. The site features a plethora of videos, high-res images, post-game interviews, blog posts, relevant tweets, live Facebook integration, content sharing features, headlines, quotes, daily photo uploads, and caption contests. Fans can feature @thenyknicks in their Tweets throughout Knicks games for the chance to be featured on

    Per Howard Jacobs, EVP of Marketing and Sales for MSG Sports, " is the next digital step in our total fan engagement strategy. It's the ultimate destination for our most passionate and loyal fans to access exclusive, behind-the-scenes content on the team and fully engage with other Knicks fans and our players in the dynamic, ever-changing conversation that's taking place across the social media landscape."

    The interactive site could soon become a benchmark for organizations across all sports looking to host their social media initiatives all in one hub. Check out some screen shots of the site below:


    More Sports Marketing Trends to Watch in 2011

    Thomas Janca of Proximity Prague recently posted a terrific Powerpoint presentation on that details emerging trends in the global sports marketing landscape. The presentation featured some great insights that I wanted to share as key discussion points to monitor.

    Ten (10) sports marketing trends highlighted in the deck for 2011 included:

    1. Digital In-Game Experience
      1. YinzCam, FanVision
    2. Social Gaming
      1. adidas' UEFA Champions game, FIFA Superstars, Nike's I AM PLAYR
    3. Content Marketing
      1. Viral videos, digital program ads
    4. Grassroots Marketing
      1. NJ Nets' Hoops and Pancakes, Sigma Olomouc's community efforts
    5. Crowdsourcing
      1. St. Louis Cardinals' fan scouting reports, Boston Globe WC fan perspectives
    6. Local-Based Networking
      1. Washington Redskins and Manchester City's Foursquare efforts
    7. Group Buying
      1. Univ. of Colorado and Washington Wizards Groupon promos
    8. Virtual Goods
      1. The Golf Warehouse's Facebook credits, Virtual appearances by pro players
    9. Ambush Marketing
      1. Bavaria - World Cup, Nike - Berlin Marathon, Hugo Boss - 09 British Open
    10. QR Codes
      1. Detroit Red Wings and Sacramento Kings' QR Code efforts

    Check out Thomas' insightful document below:


    Let Fans Go In-Depth with Facebook Spotlight Features

    Sports organizations looking for ways to promote their players (e.g. rookies, free agent signees, veterans) and give fans new, in-depth insights should consider creating a series of Facebook Spotlight Features.

    The NBA Summer League did a tremendous job sitting down with NBA prospects Eric Bledsoe and Wesley Johnson to give fans a personal tour of their Facebook accounts and personal life. The video series allowed fans to learn more about their personal experiences and relationships off the court. The players talked about their Draft Day experiences, their birthdays, friends, graduation day, and family. The excercise may be fun to also do with the dance team, mascot, coaches, and fans.

    Teams interested in the concept (and can find players willing to share their personal Facebook account) should model the Eric Bledsoe feature (1st video enclosed below) that has a nice, clean picture-in-picture format. Check out the NBA Summer League Facebook video tours below:


    Using the Power of Social Media to Drive Merchandise Sales

    Sports organizations looking for new ways to drive merchandise sales should benchmark a recent tactic that major retailers across the nation are adopting. Realizing the success of the Groupon model, Walmart and other retailers are launching special offers that are determined by the number of "likes" they receive via social media.

    Walmart recently unveiled a Crowdsaver app on their Facebook page that unlocks a discount price when enough consumers opt in to "like" a product. The promotional offer encourages consumers to share the deal with their friends, family, and colleagues, in an effort to eventually benefit from purchasing said product at a lower price if enough people "like" it.

    Walmart tested the promotional pricing model by offering a $500 plasma television at a discount rate of 18% if 5,000 consumers "liked" the product on Facebook and the company received an overwhelming response in less than 24 hours.  

    Sports organizations can consider creating a similar application/pricing model on their Facebook pages and team websites to drive merchandise sales, ticket sales (if they are in control of inventory), and concessions items. While the model would need to be tested, teams could offer "Deals of the Day" and "Deals of the Week" and where fans can purchase apparel and other merchandise items at a discount price if "X" number of people "like" the item. This promotional model could serve as a great way to drive repeat traffic to social media sites, new interest in apparel and promotional items, drive group ticket sales, and provide new means of value for consumers.

    Consider implementing a similar "If the deal gets enough likes, the price drops for everyone" model within your organization!


    Miami Heat Fans are Feeling the Team's New Player Intro

    The Miami Heat recently unveiled a new player introduction video for the 2010-11 season that has become an instant hit with fans. The vignette, to the tune of Phil Collins' hit song "In the Air Tonight", showcases the team's players in a new, stylish light off the court. The video is non-traditional, yet directly coincides with the Miami lifestyle and culture.

    Check it out below: