Minor League Baseball delivers some of the finest, unconventional ideas in all of sports. Here are seven (7) great promotional and entertainment ideas that teams from all leagues can consider benchmarking to enhance the game day fan experience at their venue.
I. Durham Bulls "Rock On" Promotion
The Durham Bulls created an entertaining segment where fans seated along the 3rd base line engaged in a singing competition against fans sitting along the first base line. The team played some commonly recognized rock songs that were easily embraced by the crowd. We should see more of this in Major League Baseball and Minor League Baseball! Simple, yet effective.
II. Live Rain Delay Theater Entertainment (Miscellaneous MiLB Teams)
The following clip demonstrates how a series of MiLB teams used a splash of creativity to entertain fans during rain delays and stoppages of play. The performances require some pre-game planning but serve as a great way to demonstrate additional entertainment value for fans.
III. Lake County Captains - "Are You Smarter Than an Umpire?" Promotion Presented by the Ohio Lottery
The Lake County Captains created a promotion replicating the popular show, "Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader" by creating a promotion where fans can test their sports IQ head-to-head against an umpire between innings.
IV. Charlotte Stone Crabs - Closest to the Pin Contest on Golfer's Appreciation Night
The Charlotte Stone Crabs attracted golfers in the local marketplace out to the ballpark by offering a post-game closest to the pin contest that allowed golfers to test their skills hitting a shot from home plate out to a flag in deep center field.
V. Lake County Captains - "The Price is Right" Promotion Presented by BJ's
The Lake County Captains did an excellent job creating a promotion replicating The Price is Right that features three (3) lucky fans being called out of the stands and onto the field to participate for a chance to win prizes.
VI. Lake County Captains - "Build El Burrito" Promotion Presented by Chipotle
The Lake County Captains created a simple on-field promotion where fans have to race to use a series of ingredients to build a burrito. The promotion, presented by Chipotle, served as a great awareness driver that also enhances the fan experience between innings.
VII. Lake County Captains - Michigan International Speedway Tire Race
The Captains teamed up with Michigan International Speedway to create a competition where two (2) contestants had to race head-to-head rolling actual tires used in NASCAR races around the infield for the chance to win ten (10) free tickets to an upcoming race.
Thanks to our friends at the San Francisco Giants, Partnership Activation recently had the chance to attend a game at AT&T Park, one of baseball's most beloved ballparks.
The Giants organization has created a "best in class" ballpark experience for fans at AT&T Park, delivering non-stop entertainment for fans of all ages, social media/technology enhancements, seamless corporate partner integration, and an array of destinations and unique concessions areas for fans to enjoy. Check out a complete gallery of the AT&T Park fan experience here (99 photos).
Enclosed below is a recap of some of the highlights of the fan experience and incorporation of corporate partners at AT&T Park.
Unique Elements at AT&T Park Include:
Interactive Coca-Cola Kids Area in Left Field (Slides, Mini-Ballpark, Giant Glove, Giant Coca-Cola Bottle, Photo Station, etc.)
Variety of Themed Food Kiosks Located Throughout the Concourse
Levi's Landing Splash Zone
Virgin America OF Wall Buildout
Coors Light Silver Bullpen - An OF Destination Where Any Fan Can Watch the Game
Unique Ghirardelli Chocolate Kiosk and Cable Car
Elaborate AT&T Fan Zone Display
Build-a-Bear Workshop in Left Center Field
Clos Du Bois California Wine Bar Concourse Kiosks
Elaborate Use of Text Messaging Campaigns via LED, Concourse Signage
Cable Car Bars Located Throughout AT&T Park
LED Messaging Welcoming Fans of Hispanic Descent to the Ballpark (Bienvenidos)
Dynamic Pricing Deals
Advertising of Upcoming Promotional Giveaways/Team Shop Offers on Television Displays Located Throughout the Concourse
Scoreboard Twitter Integration (Team Trivia Via Twitter)
Chevron Car (Rides Along Warning Track During Select Inning)
Non-Traditional Corporate Partners Include:
Adobe, Salesforce.com, Ghirardelli Chocolate, Sony Playstation, Emerald Snacks, Yahoo!, Charles Schwab, RE/MAX, Genentech, See's Candies, Pop-Secret, Clos Du Bois, Box, FusionStorm, Virgin America, Kettle Chips, Guinness, Camarena
Traditional Partners Include:
MillerCoors (Coors Light), Visa, Safeway, Chipotle, Anheuser-Busch, Bank of America, Coca-Cola, Comcast SportsNet, AT&T, StubHub, United, Corona, Lexus, Chevron, Audi, Toyota, PG&E (Utilities), CHW (Hospital),
Video Board Features Include:
I. "Guess the Actor" Jumbotron Feature Presented by Sports Authority
II. "Share the Love Kiss Cam" Presented by the Monterey Bay Aquarium
III. Fist Pump Cam Jumbotron Feature
IV. McCovey Cove Boat Race Jumbotron Feature
From a social media standpoint, Bryan Srabian of the San Francisco Giants recently sat down with the Row Show and shared some unique insights. Check out his special feature here.
With the 2010 MLB regular season winding down, we would love to get your take on what is the best in-venue destination in baseball. Please vote below or feel free to leave your thoughts/suggestions for other in-venue destinations in the Comments section below.
All suggestions have to be sponsor-driven of course...
Are you looking for new ways to entertain fans between innings?
Best Buy features a very entertaining video board segment in between innings at the new Yankee Stadium that challenges the memory skills of fans. Best Buy features a "Match Game" vignette that tasks one (1) select Yankee fan with memorizing which Yankee player was featured twice behind a series of tiles that resembles the Brady Bunch.
The feature would serve as a terrific way for teams to promote:
Dating Services (feature different singles behind the blocks)
New Team Apparel/Equipment/Hats
Automobile Companies (looking to showcase a new model)
Sponsors Looking to Drive Team Affiliation (as shown above with Best Buy)
Consider new ways that you can bring your events to life for fans outside the lines!
Partnership Activation is an industry-leading resource showcasing sports marketing and sponsorship trends, insights, and best practices.
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