Mar 31, 2022
In Fashion Forum
Can you catch lightning in a bottle? In fact, it can be a bit difficult to include these fragile glass walls. But that's exactly what sports marketing is all about. This is the moment when a brand (including the values and products it stands for) becomes more than just something people buy. In a way, the message behind the brand becomes more important than the brand itself. That's powerful stuff. By creating a movement, you start something that unites people and becomes a part of their lives. Difficult to grasp. True brand-powered movements are as rare as unicorns, and hard to deconstruct. But if you do it right, you'll have a long-term marketing strategy that not only puts your brand at the forefront of the industry - it might even change the world. What is sports marketing? Let's take a step back and see what sports marketing is. Broadly speaking, it's a brand-driven movement that creates a lasting phenomenon that organically transcends the brand. It connects and engages customers, brands and the larger movement itself. In an increasingly competitive, noisy and chaotic marketplace, sports can help build community and mobilize people. Wharton Lauder Professor Jerry Wind and Wharton Advertising Initiative Executive Director Kathryn Hayes put it well, “All movements, regardless of their origin, address unmet needs, inspire people, and truly Let the people take over." This means that a brand cannot be a movement by itself, but it can help spawn a movement. Often, this happens when brands meet social trends, unmet needs, or untapped passions. action at work TOMS shoes do this well. The industry mailing list for every pair of shoes TOMS sells, another pair goes to someone in need. It has since expanded to provide glasses and water to developing countries, as well as investment and social entrepreneurship programs. While the concept and mission was close to founder Blake Mycoskie's heart, it was the brand's customers who sparked the movement. Then you have WeWork. Their mission is to build a community where people work to live, not earn a living. It is at the forefront of a broader mission where people place personal achievement above the traditional career ladder or making money. WeWork's net worth is now estimated at $20 billion . feature Generally speaking, there are five characteristics that are essential for a strong brand. Only a strong brand can drive a movement. Create emotion: All successful brands inspire and evoke emotion, but when a company or brand creates a grand statement and its customers stand behind it, a movement occurs. Encourage participation: Great sports will provide opportunities for engagement and empowerment for clients and employees. There needs to be a common meeting place where everyone can connect and inspire each other. Build community: Brands can do this through social media (such as Facebook groups) or in real life. WeWork has built a brick-and-mortar community in each office, nurturing it through regular events. It also has a virtual one via Slack groups. Commitment: If people feel like they are part of the movement, they will commit to it long-term. Authenticity: People can smell a fake from a mile away. Only a true brand can successfully create a movement. The movement itself needs to be part of the brand’s bottom line, and a level of accountability means stakeholders will invest in it. major obstacle There are some key barriers to achieving great sports marketing. You can't create movement if you're 100% focused on your return on investment (ROI). If your organization has silos that prevent people from collaborating effectively, your campaign may fail. So slow, rigid, and overburdened companies won't act. Sports marketing also cannot be reverse engineered. A successful brand-pushing campaign cannot be transformed into the brand's DNA. Instead, it needs to be the other way around. With the mission of a company based on it, like TOMS shoes. out of normal range Brand-driven campaigns go beyond ordinary brands: It serves the greater good or some purpose in wider society. It captures what is in the moment. Both 2016 presidential campaigns dug deep into the culture and political attitudes of the time, ultimately creating movements larger than candidates and platforms. There is a strong call to action and a clear role that the brand customer can play. Plus a place where they can meet and share ideas. It drives a change in culture or behavior consistent with a fundamental shift in society's values. For example, WeWork and the movement to work as a way of life. It has a lasting impact - if you can make a documentary about the brand, it's a movement. positive influence Small Business Friday illustrates this perfectly. American Express launched Small Business on Saturday to support small business owners. It meets all the criteria for sports. It has a purpose and a strong emotional component. The call to action builds on local values, personal connections and community support. It called on people to shop locally on the first Saturday after Thanksgiving.