Knowledge is Empowering and I Plan to Market my knowledge.

After taking this course I am confident that I can identify and define basic marketing concepts such as the marketing mix, situational analysis, branding, positioning, value, marketing research, marketing strategies, ethics, and sustainability as it relates to the sports industry. I am able to analyze and explain the basic marketing concepts used by current and past sport industry professionals and organizations. This course has taught me how to understand what its like to make, start, and continue a successful brand.

I can develop and visually present an effective communication plan to reach specific, well-defined target audiences for a sport organization. In my professional career I plan to market a brand, analyze my target audience, be able to expand a brand successfully, recognize good and bad market strategies, and understand the value of positioning.

Also from this course I have learned how to demonstrate the effectiveness of being interconnected in the marketing word by the marketing plan we made at the end of the course. This class is real world beneficial and it made me comfortable when addressing marketing situations. Not only do I think I benefited from this course but I also enjoyed this course. I will highly recommend this course to anyone in the business field.

 

Nike Winter Commercial

This commercial demonstrates that it doesn’t matter what sport you play you are all athletes and athletes wear Nike. They have every sport and both genders to broaden their sales too. Some external factors used to influence the consumers purchase behaviors are the weather and the sports that these athletes represent. Another external that could affect the purchase behaviors negatively would be price of the product. If someone sees a bunch of professional athletes wearing one brand they can assume that that brand is most likely pricey. Another external factor is the social aspect of the commercial. Professional athletes are cool and amazing athletes! If you wear what they wear you might end up being just as cool as they are and just as much as an athlete as them also!

            Some internal factors of this commercial are the strengths and weaknesses. The strengths are the professional athletes they use to expand their brand. A weakness would be that they only used professional athletes because not everyone can compare.

            A consumer would see this commercial and first think okay I can be an athlete even when it’s snowing outside. Then later on when all the athletes are wearing the same thing while playing in the snow the consumer will realize that if they wanted to play their sport in the snow that they would have to go get the clothes that they are wearing to be able to stay warm and be an athlete!

            The best thing Nike does is show off their brand. I, for example, am someone that buys because of brand and now seeing this commercial I will buy this brand not only for my sport but to be able to be active outside when I didn’t think it was an option.

Oregon Ducks and their SUCCESS

One assignment I had to do earlier this year in my sport marketing class was talk about the Oregon Ducks and their branding success. In 2015, Oregon University has spent some $5 million in a campaign to rebrand itself, and until recently had the intention to spend another $15 million (INSIDE, Woodhouse). Since then, instead of fund-raising for another $15 million as planned to put toward branding the university canceled its existing contract with the marketing firm early and was looking for ways to streamline and centralize its internal marketing programs in an effort to save money (INSIDE, Woodhouse). Kyle Henley, vice president for university communications at Oregon, said the university’s original goal of raising a full $20 million toward branding is “not realistic,” and that many of the objectives for which Oregon planned to use outside firms can be accomplished in-house. This is the reason why I believe that without Nike sponsoring Oregon they would NOT have the impact in branding that they have today.

            Nike has brought Oregon University to life. Starting with the uniforms and facilities of the athletic teams and ending with fan engagement. Without the help of Nike, the Ducks wouldn’t have the reputation they have today. They first thing you think of when thinking of Oregon’s athletics is the football teams uniform. It’s hard to forget a team in an all neon uniform, or a team that doesn’t wear the same uniform twice. Being a college athlete I couldn’t even imagine being that “spoiled.” I think Oregon’s marketing team being so strong is hyped up too much because Nike did all the branding work just by having their sign on all the neon they wear.

            The Oregon Ducks have made a name for themselves whether they win or not but the branding success has in fact helped with their wins! Confidence is always key and there is no way anyone involved in Oregon football is anything other than confident while in those one of a kind uniforms.

NCAA D-II Social Media

  One D-II social media page I’m familiar with because of my time running the WVWC Softball Twitter page is the University of Charleston’s softball Twitter page. While here at WVWC we don’t allow profanity at games or about games on social media, not all schools are like that. I refuse to tweet about wanting to kick somebody’s ass, however the University of Charleston has no problem explaining in detail how much they want to beat somebody.

            I believe they can improve their social media by cleaning it up. Instead of allowing nonsense on the page they should work on tweeting about accomplishments and how they will fix their failures. Running a sports team social media is stressful because you need to realize it’s not just your peers that can see what you say. It’s the 14 year old wanting to play college softball, it’s the grandparents wanting to see how their grandchild did today at the plate, or even other schools wondering how a game turned out.

            I recommend they only follow other sports teams and their players to show support and I believe that if they can clean it up then they will see a larger following base and more support at their games. Recognition is good but only if it’s good recognition. A reputation is hard to build and easy to break.

Tampa Bay Rays Partnerships

The Tampa Bay Rays have many partnerships within their corporation but one of the most significant within the ballpark is International Diamond Center. International Diamond Center gets to promote their fine jewelry through in-ballpark signage and interactive fan video board features in an effort to drive fans into their multiple locations in Tampa and Orlando.

In the name of goodwill the International Diamond Center has allowed for one free proposal a season at the Rays stadium! In my honest opinion this is what drives some whole families to ballparks instead of just the dad and kids, moms want to see a proposal! This is one promotional way to get more fans to the ball park.

The Rays also have a dog night at the ball park and T-Mobile sponsors this because they use the “Game Changing Moment” to promote a service dog. However, this would’ve been unrecognizable without my research.

Sponsoring is a money game but the goodwill sponsorships is what bring people to enjoy themselves more at the ballpark. Go Rays!

 

Effort Attracts Effort

After watching this marketing analysis video of the Milwaukee Bucks the largest thing you can take away from it is how they discuss marketing to millennials. Michael Grahl spoke to the students about his position for the Milwaukee Bucks and how his goals are brand building, fan engagement, contact creation, and revenue generation. While proving that he focuses on interactive marketing, mainly with millennials, by making sure that fans are involved with the team. While providing experiences for all peoples reasons for coming to a game or visiting the website he was able to have a 10 percent fan growth online during the year that the Bucks were the worst team in the NBA- that’s impressive. His main priority were controlling the variables he could control. The business side of a sports team cannot control the team’s wins or loses but they can controls someone’s experience

Two takeaways that I got from this discussion that would help a DII program such as WVWC is to focus on grabbing youth, which would be the schools future, and to realize what kind of school you are and to except that and to build from that.

When considering WVWC, looking from a softball point of view, grabbing the youth would be getting the younger high school age and below kids to come and watch the games and for younger girls to participate in the softball camp days hoping to one day want to be a part of the team. Like Mr. Grahl stted while they were there we would have to interact with them if we wanted them to feel appreciated for coming. Effort likes effort.

Another way for us to grow our brand would to be more confident! Being confident doesn’t mean you think you are perfect- it’s knowing your strengths and weaknesses and accepting them and growing from them. You have to know what type of school you are and who your fan base is and make your strengths stronger and your weaknesses not so weak. Weselyan is a small school so when you market a product to the school be specific and detailed with it instead of being broad.

West Virginia Wesleyan College is the perfect scene to make perfect. Decide on your product and your fan base and grow the product to the fan base that feels appreciated. The best thing you can remember when trying to grow a product is the more effort you put in the more effort you will receive because effort attracts effort.

Segmentation in Marketing- Sara

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This ad uses its product to promote winning, something everybody wants, by taking the Gatorade and having it coming in first in a race with other sports drinks. When analyzing this ad through state-of-being segmentation you will reference location, age, income, gender, etc. For this specific ad it applies to all of the different segments without being biased or having a specific audience other than athletes. Athletes can be located anywhere, any age once able to run basically, any economic status, and man or woman. However, state-of-mind segmentation refers to attitudes, values and lifestyles. Based off this picture it is targeting athletes, but more specifically athletes who want to win. If you have a noncompetitive attitude then you wouldn’t buy the Gatorade to win like this picture shows, but rather buy it because it tastes good.

I feel like this ad communicates to its intended audience very well because it’s intended audience is athletes. Athletes, for the most part, want to be the best they can be and by having the Gatorade bottle winning the race compared to the other drinks- that makes the Gatorade more appealing to athletes.

 

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This ad uses one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time to promote drinking milk. Using an athlete like Aaron Rodgers to promote a product is basically saying that if you consume our product you will one day be as great as this athlete. From a state-of-being segmentation standpoint this ad applies to anyone that can afford milk, the male population because they’re the ones that play football, any age, and any location. From a state-of-mind segmentation standpoint this ad will apply to anyone who wants to become a great quarterback! For example maybe an offensive lineman wouldn’t pay too much attention to this ad because he doesn’t look up to a quarterback as much as he would a left tackle. For this ad to be affective you must first be inspired by greatness and if that doesn’t work you would have to be a quarterback.

Based on who the targeted audience is I believe they do a good job at marketing their product. I think using Aaron Rodgers creates a slim target market solely based of fans liking/disliking the packers, but for who they are trying to target they are very affective with it.

 

 

Interpretations and Stereotypes in Sport Marketing

In April 2008 Vogue put a black man on the cover of their magazine. Before this, Richard Gere and George Clooney are the only other men ever to be on the cover (Stewart, March 2008). Vogue does not have a history of embracing African-Americans on its covers. The magazine was founded in 1914 and since then there has only been three African American celebrities to be featured on the cover. On this cover of Vogue you can see where Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James seems to be embodying ugly stereotypes about black men: The wild, savage, white-woman-obsessed beast (Stewart, March 2008). When this issue was published people started referring to LeBron James as King Kong. Perception was all anybody needed for this cover of Vogue to be the biggest controversy about race that any magazine has ever had.

An internal issue that arose from this image was the personal perception of the basketball player. His demeanor is portrayed as someone who would be uncontrollably aggressive. This cover of Vogue didn’t directly affect the team LeBron plays for rather than the NBA as a whole which turns into an external dilemma throughout the league. There was no advertisement within this cover to promote the team or the league but rather to promote how to keep a great body. The problem we face with this image is that it doesn’t promote the “Secrets of the Best Bodies” like it claims to do.

In class we focused on making sure that as a marketer you don’t want to skew away from the product you are trying to advertise to the consumer. This image is the perfect example of how interpretations and stereotypes play a role into what the consumer will think about a product put on the market. Below are other images taken from this photoshoot so you can see all the different options Vogue had to choose from rather than what was published. Also attached is the comparison of LeBron in this cover to King Kong.

 

ME

Here I am currently sitting at my desk in little Buckhannon, West Virginia writing my first blog. If you would’ve asked me three years ago where I thought I would be or what I thought I would be doing I would’ve never been able to come up with the answer of being 1600 miles from home- writing a blog.

Home for me is Naples, Florida. I grew up on water and sand and was able to see the sun all days of the year excluding our hurricane days. Now, home is still Naples but it is also Buckhannon. I transitioned from oceans to rivers, sand to state parks, and hot to cool to freezing. The most frequently asked question I receive is why I would leave the sunshine for snow, well, here’s why. I came to this little, beautiful town with a dream to be a college athlete. Along with growing up on beaches I also grew up on ball fields. I’ve been playing softball since I was nine years old and never looked back. Buckhannon gave me the opportunity to fulfill all of my aspirations I ever had while growing up.

Even though softball is what brought me to West Virginia Wesleyan College it’s the school itself, the people, and the relationships I’ve made that have kept me here. Being away from home is nothing to brag about. You constantly miss something- whether it be a birthday, your dog getting in trouble for something for the one thousandth time, or a simple hug from your dad. However, being far away is something to be proud about. You learn to be independent, you realize your own strength, and your eyes are opened to different ways of living. I’m truly thankful for my college and the beautiful state of West Virginia.

While here at WVWC I major in Sports Business and a minor in Communication. I plan on working in sports for as long as I possibly can. The thing that makes sports so beautiful is that when athletes have to “go to work” they’re excited about it. There’s a sense of accomplishment when they go to work because they have all came so far to get where they are. I look forward to working around athletes who have endless amounts of drive and passion. Sports are so important to so many people. Everything you see nowadays is edited- TV, movies, pictures, songs, etc. but when you watch a game or a match or anything sport related it’s all unedited. It’s real. All of those emotions are real, real life people doing amazing things that the ordinary simply cannot do. Sport is beautiful.

So to sum this post up I’m from Florida, currently at college in West Virginia, miss my dog, and utterly obsessed with sports. If I’ve learned anything from my past three years here at Wesleyan it would be that it doesn’t matter how far you are from family they will always be a phone call away, if you don’t absolutely love what you’re doing then don’t do it, and whatever you do decide to do make sure you do it with passion.

“Life is a journey, not a destination.”