One Good Lesson From Day 1 @ the U.S. Open
Take note wily ambushers: Powerade's endlessly long Venus Williams Zero Ferry up the east river and wretched bus ride to Flushing Meadows (an hour door to door) just goes to prove that it's not the first sponsor message you see, it's the lasting one. Once we finally got there, plenty of tennis to see. Nevermind that fact, we got a chance to look at all of the U.S. Open activations! Rather than talk about them, we figured we'd just show you what we saw through some pictures and video broken down into four categories: Mobile Activations, Just for Fun, Utility and the Remnants. Did we miss something? Which activation do you like the best? Vote at the end for the first annual SponsorPitch sponsorship activation award.
There's nothing better than a sponsor's product in action, providing a real utility to either fans or the players themselves. Unless one of your major competitors (i.e. Lacoste) has a larger store than you on-site. In this category: Lexus, the official vehicle; Continental Check In to Win; American Express Concierge; Polo, the official clothing; the Heineken Pub, IBM and Citizen Watches.
Finally, you can generally tell the remnant inventory because it's primarily media and some basic activation. That said, Oikos Greek Yogurt and SpongeTech might be laughing all the way to the bank when they break down the spend/media ROI. With that said, how on earth do you make a booth full of sponges sexy?
Takeaway from Day 1: no matter how clever and cost efficient your ambush is, it can never recreate the power and atmosphere of the live experience. Creative, but constrained gorilla marketers will have a hard time ambushing sponsors that look to add value to that.
photo credit via Twitter on Continental Airplane: TJ Cohen