Archive for the ‘MKTG’ Category

Who is Your Favorite Past Celebrity Endorser?

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MKTG members Kyle Goncalves, Geoff Biss, Marlie McLaughlin and Katherine Allen get together and discuss their favorite past sponsorship deals, why it appeals to them and how it has made an impact within the industry.

“Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater video game series was a trailblazer in bringing skateboarding into mainstream and sponsorship culture.” — Kyle

KYLE:

Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater shaped the world of skateboarding – it was more than just a video game. This popular series was one of the first and leading platforms, catapulting the sport into mainstream culture. To some, skateboarding was seen as a rebellious activity, but I believe that has shifted due to the work and talent of Tony Hawk as the series brand ambassador. In the late 90s and early 2000s, Activision (video game publisher) leveraged one of the best skaters of all time (Tony Hawk), and created a sense of credibility on a fun platform that allowed room for consumers to truly engage in skateboarding culture. The series and work of Tony allowed the industry to embrace the sport which created a new world for a variety of sponsors to dive into.

Whether you skateboarded or not – you knew the name and importance of Tony Hawk. Tony Hawk as a face for the series was a perfect choice due to his high performance and demeanor. He elevated the sport which opened the door for sponsors to consider skateboarders as marketable athletes – he definitely paved the way.

KATHERINE:

“Peyton Manning’s persona is strategically highlighted in MasterCard’s Priceless campaign” — Geoff

 

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Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

October 9th, 2017 at 6:47 pm

MKTG Westport: Toiletries for Troops Initiative

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All year long the MKTGers of Westport, CT collect toiletries from our business trips, homes, and dollar stores to donate to A Project from the Heart, a local organization in Fairfield, CT that sends packages to our troops overseas. Our troops are always in need of these small items while living away from home. We feel it is important to give back to the troops to say thank you for all they do. Below are letters that A Project from the Heart has received from troops expressing their gratitude for the packages. This definitely makes us smile!


 

 

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Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

October 9th, 2017 at 10:59 am

Head of US Digital, Gavin Blawie, Speaks at Advertising Week New York

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Yesterday, on the final day of a very busy Advertising Week in New York City, our very own Gavin Blawie (Head of US Digital) participated in a panel entitled, The Power of the Fan: How to Win Them (& Their Friends).  In front of a packed audience at the Liberty Theatre in Times Square, Gavin joined Nicholas Carlson (Editor in Chief at Business Insider’s popular channel: Insider), Jeff Gregor (CMO and Chief Catalyst Officer at TNT & tbs), Walker Jacobs (Chief Operating Officer at FANDOM), and Christopher Vollmer (Global Entertainment and Media Advisory Leader at PwC) in a discussion about how to engage sports fans in a true, honest way.

Gavin shared with us his three takeaways from the panel including:

“In a social era, fans are the cornerstone of every modern marketing effort, for they converse and share in communities self organized around what they care about most. 

“Whether it’s lifestyle or digital, all smart brand marketers connect and amplify on social through fans. It works because people believe people, and a fan can help convert non-fans faster and cheaper than brands can.”

“Smart marketers need to build on organic fan conversations, and complement them through the lens of making the fan experience better, richer, and more sharable”

Gavin received great feedback including this from the organizer: “Gavin, you added a ton to the conversation. I know Nicholas was really grateful!” For those of us in the audience, we can surely vouch for that! If you’d like to view the entire panel, it’s been posted here.

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Written by Mary Kate Pleggenkuhle
Mary Kate Pleggenkuhle

October 2nd, 2017 at 9:27 am

3 Key Trends in NBA Jersey Patch Sponsorship

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The NBA has become the first North American major professional sports league to allow ads on jerseys. During the 2017-2018 season, players in the NBA will sport corporate logos on their team uniforms. The ad space will be sold as part of a three-year pilot program where each team will have the right to sell its own ad space to sponsors. In consideration of the foregoing, MKTG has outlined the state of jersey sponsorship in the NBA, common activation strategies around the patch and potential implications for the league.

JERSEY PATCH SPONSORS STEM FROM CONSISTENT SOURCES; TECHNOLOGY BRANDS, FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS AND LOCAL EMPLOYERS

There are clear commonalities in the roster of sponsors who have invested in the NBA jersey patch. Firstly, technology brands are leveraging their patch sponsorship to drive mass awareness for their digital initiatives such as Sharecare and the Atlanta Hawks that are teaming up to improve healthcare for Georgia. Secondly, F.I.’s like Flagstar Bank (Pistons) and Western Union (Nuggets) are mass brands that historically have greater permission to invest in signature branding assets that reach mass audiences. Finally, employers with a large presence in the region of their local NBA team (Goodyear in Cleveland, Harley Davidson in Milwaukee) have invested back into properties that can be positioned as supporting local passion points, be a source of pride for employees, and block competitors from gaining traction in an HQ market.

BRANDS OUTLINE THEIR SUPPORTING ACTIVATION PROGRAMS TO COMPLEMENT JERSEY SPONSORSHIPS

In the majority of jersey sponsorships announced to date, brands are clear in their messaging; jersey patches are part of a broader commitment to the property. Brands are showcasing videos that highlight the brand synergies, collaborative tactics and creative activation strategies for teams and sponsor. Both Sharecare and Fitbit are leveraging their partnership to tackle health and wellness through their digital platforms. Sharecare is activating around their jersey sponsorship with their Sharecare Movement in collaboration with the Atlanta Hawks. In contrast, FitBit and the Minnesota Timberwolves are exploring ways to leverage and integrate their technology to improve player’s performance, and assist fans in making healthier choices during games. Jersey patch sponsorship is isolation can be perceived as an awareness-driving media buy. By complementing the asset with an integrated activation, sponsors will resonate deeper with fans.

Read the rest of the article here

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Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

September 25th, 2017 at 11:33 am

MLSE agrees to record arena rights deal with Scotiabank

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Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment has agreed to a landmark 20-year sponsorship agreement with Scotiabank to rename the Air Canada Centre, TSN has learned.

The agreement is worth about $800 million (Canadian), according to three sources familiar with the matter. Under MLSE’s previous agreement with Air Canada, struck in 1999, the airline paid about $4 million per year.

The agreement with Scotiabank, which will see the downtown Toronto arena renamed the Scotiabank Arena next July 1, is believed to be the highest-priced annual building and team sponsorship in North American sports history.

David Hopkinson, MLSE’s chief commercial officer, said in an interview that he received serious offers for the arena naming rights from eight companies.

“To be honest, it wasn’t that difficult to find interested suitors,” Hopkinson said. “This is already firmly established as Canada’s premier entertainment venue… We felt we had a very good sense about what the market would bear and Scotia and ourselves have agreed on what that number should look like.”

Arena naming rights have become a major revenue source for pro sports teams. Financial services companies such as Scotiabank, in pursuit of new young consumers, have become prime buyers.

Click here to read the rest of the article

Article written by Rick Westhead, TSN Senior Correspondent

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Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

September 5th, 2017 at 10:22 am

MKTG INSIGHTS: HOW SPONSORS ACTIVATE AT THE LITTLE LEAGUE WORLD SERIES

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The Little League World Series attracts a large audience both in person and on broadcast. However, the event is unique compared to other sporting events of a similar size due to less emphasis placed on the on-field performance and a greater emphasis on youth sport. Sponsors take advantage of these unique themes at the Little League World Series and leverage them in custom activations.

This past weekend marked the conclusion of the Little League World Series as Tokyo Kitasuna defeated the Lufkin, Texas to win the championship. The Little League World Series has been held every year since 1947 in Williamsport, Pennsylvania where Little League baseball players from around the world compete. The event is highly unique as more than 400,000 people attend every year and the event receives prominent broadcasting from ESPN.

The Little League World Series attracts a significant audience considering it is made up of 11-13-year-olds and not professional athletes. The unique nature of the Little League World Series also allows sponsors to take on the themes of the event and leverage them in promotions and activations.

With the Little League World Series being made up of young athletes, the event has much less emphasis on the on-field performance and a more grass roots feel than other sporting events of a similar size. The event also brings about nostalgia as former Littler Leaguers are reminded of when they participated in youth sports and get to share that experience with their family. With the Little League World Series unique attributes and high reach through broadcast and on-site attendees, sponsors look to activate in ways to play off the high family population and look to promote products or services that would highly resonate with families.

Honda Targets Baseball Families with Mini-Van Activation – As a 21-year partner of the Little League World Series, Honda has looked to tailor their activations around the event to appeal to families and the kids participating. Honda leverages the event to promote their Odyssey mini-van, having it appear in custom creative as well as providing shuttles to the event from local hotels. With plenty of families onsite at the event, Honda is promoting their family friendly vehicle and demonstrates its use during a time when parents will need the extra space to bring their kids to baseball.

Canon Provides Tournament Packages for Both Parents and Kids – At this year’s Little League World Series, Canon was promoting their Rebel camera in combination with their printer. Canon showed the two products on-site at this year’s Little League World Series where parents would be highly active in capturing their children’s on-field moments. Also, Canon created a player toolkit that was available for free on their website. The toolkit included scorecards, colouring books, and snack recipes and which was also promoted to be printed off using the Canon printer. Canon’s provided things that both the parents of the Little League Players would make use of during the tournament. Cannon’s approach looks to engage the entire family through their sponsorship.

Dick’s Sporting Goods Promotes their Youth Sports Service – Dick’s Sporting Goods uses the Little League World Series to promote their Team Sports HQ service which is an online portal that organizes youth sports teams, from scheduling to registration. They have created official Little League templates and offer it free to all users. With the high amount of families participating in youth sport attending or watching the Little League World Series, Dick’s has strong opportunity to promote their platform to an audience that will be interested in their product.

The Little League World Series is a unique event which attracts families invested in youth sport from all over. Sponsors recognize this crowd and look to activate at the event with products and strategies targeted to that demographic.

Originally posted by MKTG Canada

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MKTG INSIGHTS: PICKS OF THE WEEK – AUGUST 28

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#1

Beats by Dre Releases new spot ahead of Mayweather McGregor

Beats by Dre has released a new ad featuring UFC fighter Conor McGregor, in advance of his highly anticipated “fight of the century” versus Floyd Mayweather. The ad features a young Irishman hanging out with his friends on their way to a boxing match at a local gym in Ireland. These scenes are interspersed with clips of present-day McGregor getting ready for his training, and entering the ring, and ends with the phrase, “Above the Noise”. McGregor is well-known for his brash attitude, charisma, and willingness to enter into any form of trash talk with his opponent (especially Floyd Mayweather). In his career, McGregor has become “notorious” for making bold predictions, often while being severely doubted by his opponents and the media; however, he has risen to the top of the fighting world by delivering on these predictions. For this reason, McGregor seems like an excellent fit for the brand. In the past Beats has leveraged confident, but often maligned athletes such as LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Draymond Green, and Colin Kaepernick and used their product as a euphemism for the athletes drowning out the naysayers. Leveraging McGregor is also a potentially risky strategy by Beats (now owned by Apple) as he has been willing to cross the line into politically incorrect territory when trash-talking with his opponents. Beats will have to ensure that McGregor does not venture too far off brand for Beats which is always a risk when partnering with outspoken athletes.

#2

Pepsi releases exclusive Snapchat Filters

Pepsi Canada has teamed up with Snap to release 20 exclusive Snapchat Lenses. Each Pepsi Lens can be unlocked via specially designed Snapcodes on select Pepsi products. Pepsi utilized Snap’s creative social platform in order to connect with consumers and enhance the way they share their summer experiences. Lenses will unlock for one hour, with the option to scan and unlock multiple times. Each Snapcode design features an illustration that provides a sneak peek into the Lens. A similar experiential activation concept has been used before by Pepsi’s main competitor, Coke. The Play a Coke campaign involved consumers downloading the Play a Coke app, scanning the bottle, and receiving a select playlist on Spotify. Although the two concepts are similar, Pepsi did a great job at simplifying the process by using an app that most smart phone users already have downloaded and distributing specialized content through this platform. This reduces the risk of consumers not being able to access or engage the content for free. Snap it with Pepsi appears as a great fit for both partners, delivering fresh content to Canadian summer enthusiasts. They have taken the next step in enhancing their abilities to engage audiences through downloadable and experiential material.

#3

Forever 21 releases new collection with Future’s creative director

Forever 21 has created the Cease x Hendrxx x Forever 21 line and it is spearheaded by musician Future’s creative director Fred Foster, who started the streetwear brand Cease and Desist. The collection will feature athleisure items with Future’s Hendrxx branding and bold type. This partnership gives fans who do not have the time to wait for hours in line for exclusive pop-up shops or the money to afford resell prices, an opportunity to buy an artist’s exclusive line. Forever 21 has come under fire for stealing the likeness of artists without their permission, which has resulted in numerous copyright infringement lawsuits. Partnerships like this alleviate that reputation and are the closest way for Forever 21 to emulate music and streetwear authentically without infringing upon any copyright. With exclusivity being the primary force behind high resell prices on items with high demand and low supply, more artists may look to this strategy as a way to give fans more accessible merchandise.

Picks Of The Week Originally Posted by MKTG Canada

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Written by Mary Kate Pleggenkuhle
Mary Kate Pleggenkuhle

August 29th, 2017 at 11:32 am

Amazon and MKTG: Boost with FBA

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We all shop at Amazon. But did you ever stop to think about how the Amazon Marketplace actually works and who the sellers are that make it all possible?

Those are just a couple of the questions that the team at MKTG aimed to answer for our partner, Amazon.

In 2015, Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA), a division of Amazon related to its Prime sellers, decided it was time to celebrate their sellers in a huge way, and shine a light on a few of their prized products. Our challenge was to provide a forum for Amazon sellers to gather, learn how to optimize their businesses using Amazon, expand their reach, and also get valuable face-time with Amazon experts and of course with each other.

Enter the first- ever 2017 Boost with FBA Seller Summit, a 1,000+ seller attended premier event hosted at Pier 94, right in the heart of New York City. To kick off in proper Big Apple style, all attendees were treated to a welcome reception the night before at Tao, Downtown and a full-day of extra activities. At the main event, Amazon sellers from around the globe attended presentations and participated in over a dozen educational sessions, from Going Global to Inventory Management. They were also able to meet one-on-one with Amazon experts in Office Hours sessions to talk specifically about their businesses, as well as learn from some of the top sellers featured in the seller showcases throughout the venue. (more after the photo album…)

 

This was a highly collaborative effort where MKTG worked closely with our amazing partners at Amazon to curate, design, strategize and produce all creative materials and the events themselves from soup-to-nuts.

The feedback from sellers was overwhelmingly positive and we’re looking forward to working on the next one coming to a US city near you!

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MKTG Insights: WHAT SPONSORS CAN LEARN FROM MODERN ALBUM RELEASES

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With the overly saturated music industry experiencing ever-changing shifts in music consumption, artists must find unique ways to gain traction within the market in order to create successful campaigns. Technological innovations such as digital streaming provided by service giants such as Spotify and Apple Music are truly shaping the industry. There is now a greater accessibility to music than ever before and artists can easily get lost in the clutter. The days where studios and labels put mass advertising behind the release of an album are gone. This has caused musicians to increasingly think like brands; relying on creativity and innovation to drive interest in their upcoming sales. Sponsors and marketers also live in a similar dynamic realm where there are constant technological changes and never ending clutter of branded content. The following are leading examples from the music industry that provide key learnings for marketers in today’s world.

In June 2017, in advance of the release of her “Witness” album, Katy Perry partnered with YouTube to launch a 96-hour live stream of her living day-to-day in a camera filled “Big Brother” style home. The live stream allowed fans to observe Perry in a range of content from average daily activities to more intense moments such as therapy sessions. The broadcast was supported with celebrity guest appearances who interacted with Katy for interviews, cooking, games, challenges, and conversations. The live stream led to a concert where Katy performed songs from the upcoming album. The Katy Perry Witness World Wide Live Stream reached 190 countries and garnered 49 million views.

Katy Perry provided fans with an opportunity to receive unprecedented access to celebrity. The raw, constant transparency that a live stream provides allows consumers to feel an authentic connection by being able to tune into an “unscripted” experience.

For sponsorship marketers, Perry’s stunt is a reminder of key operating principles when developing strategy and planning brand experiences. Perry understood the power of designing a brand experience that would organically drive social chatter. Rather than rely on media appearances on TV and radio to plug the album release like most artists, Perry’s live stream was designed for the digital age. By choosing the correct platform, in this case, YouTube, users were able to connect at any time (mobile, desktop etc.) for real-time interactions. The tactic of live streaming her activity scaled access to Perry in a way that transcended geographic borders and time constraints; sponsors planning physical branded experiences must also find ways to bring the consumer experience to those unable to engage in the precise time and place of the activation.

Notable hip-hop stars 2 Chainz and Kendrick Lamar are examples of artists who have utilized powerful physical, in-person brand experiences that coincide with particular promotional announcements. 2 Chainz released his fourth studio album titled “Pretty Girls like Trap Music” in June 2017 which was supported by a unique physical activation. Inspired by the emerging genre of Southern “trap music” that has been taking control of mainstream airways, 2 Chainz leverages “trap” roots by replicating a real life “trap house” in the outskirts of Atlanta, Georgia. The album themed, pink home is decked out with urban artwork and was redesigned to coincide with 2 Chainz branding and larger promotional campaign that matches 2 Chainz album art.

The activation’s main purpose was to be used as a space for listening parties. Supplementary, outside of the home, was a strategically place vintage pink Corvette and stove where visitors were encouraged to take photos and share their “trap experience” on social media. The activation was an enormous tourist and fan attraction, covered by major media outlets that accumulated over 300,000 digital tags.

Similarly, Kendrick Lamar kicked off “THE DAMN. TOUR” by launching retail pop-up shops in select cities that coincide with his tour dates. The pop-up shops sell limited-edition Kendrick branded clothing and accessories. Activations amplify traditional marketing efforts by providing a memorable and engaging consumer experience. Consumers are able to interact on a ground-level and share digitally. This activation style allows for ultimate consumer engagement that is enhanced with wide-spread media coverage.

High-touch activations act as a unique tactic to engage consumers by utilizing multiple touchpoints. These activations allow artists to push branded content online while also providing fans with a real and tangible interaction. Aside from relying solely on social media, high-touch activation experiences allow brands stand out amongst the clutter.

One of the most talked about releases in 2016 was Beyoncé’s sixth studio album, Lemonade. The surprise release was supported by a massive amount of content: a one hour HBO film, an eleven chapter visual album, and the launch of the Formation World Tour. Beyoncé leveraged a combination of art, music, poetry, and politics to create one of 2016’s best-selling albums that had a large impact in a variety of markets that surpassed the category of music.

The element of surprise can be one of the strongest marketing techniques. Brands that execute this type of disruptive promotion cause a change consumer behavior and trigger some of the strongest personal and digital dialogues. Due to the unexpected release, consumer behavior is altered and now brand focused. Fans and consumers erupt in a sense of urgency to dive deep into the branded content. This social eruption causes word-of-mouth marketing, which is seen as one of the top forms of influential advertising. Awareness is built exponentially, consumer emotions are supercharged and a passionate brand engagement is created.

With the recent need for artists to stand out with successful campaigns, the market is seeing a shift in promotional techniques from brands within the industry. Traditional efforts must now be altered and amplified with unique activations, disruptive marketing and brand authentication in order to create more of an impact.  By leveraging these case studies and insights, marketers can truly enhance a variety of brand experiences.

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Written by Stephanie Rudnick
Stephanie Rudnick

July 31st, 2017 at 12:58 pm

Sponsorship Around the World: India Edition

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Sponsorship Around the World highlights sponsorship trends and best practices from various global markets. As a global agency with 32 offices across 19 countries, MKTG Canada tapped into the global MKTG network to gain local expertise from brand experience leaders across the world. To further enhance this edition, MKTG Canada spoke with Brian Tellis, Co-Founder and Group CEO of MKTG Fountainhead Promotions & Events in India.

Home to over 1.3 billion people – making it the second most populated country in the world – India is well known for two of its strongest cultural passion points; cricket and the Bollywood film industry. And while these two areas dominate culture in India, the country’s sport and entertainment offering is diversifying, as emerging property types gain momentum with an expanding consumer base.

Marketers are recognizing this and the sponsorship spend in India has grown substantially. Last year alone, sports sponsorship grew by almost 20% reaching over $1 billion CAD (outpacing advertising growth which increased at 12%).

In a very populated country, with a growing middle class that could become the 5th largest consumer economy by 2025, sponsors are presented with an intriguing opportunity to target this emerging middle class. India’s wages have steadily increased with the daily average wage expected to increase 24% by 2020. As India’s economy continues to grow steadily, consumers are beginning to have more spending power in the country, increasing the opportunity and demand for sponsorships.

 

For the rest of the article, click here

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Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

July 18th, 2017 at 2:29 pm