This post was originally published on October 22, 2014. To celebrate their second consecutive trip to the World Series, we are sharing it again!
Let’s go, Royals!
Our Kansas City-based online marketing firm has baseball on the mind for obvious reasons. After an unprecedented
8-game postseason winning streak — no need to talk about Game One — the Royals are representing our home turf as American League champions in this year’s MLB showdown.
As we watch the boys in blue with bated breath, we’re sharing a few of the ways we’ve noticed brands incorporating the World Series into their marketing efforts — and what your takeaways should be for your franchise marketing strategy.
Organically Integrate the World Series (Or Another Sporting Event) in Your Franchise Marketing Efforts
Lee Jeans Uses Local Loyalty
Perhaps the smartest way we’ve seen a brand use the World Series in their marketing plan? KC’s own Lee Jeans is calling for all Royals fans to support the team by donning local blue jeans, rather than denim made by San Francisco-based Levi’s.
Today, Lee Jeans is hosting a Blue Jean Trade-In at their Merriam, KS headquarters, inviting people to drop off used jeans (whether they’re Levi’s or any other brand). The cast-offs will be donated to San Francisco homeless shelters, and to benefit the KC area, the company will be donating an equal amount of Lee Jeans to shelters in the metro area.
Donors get entered to win an $1,000 Visa gift card, and all receive a coupon for 85% off one item at Lee.com, an homage to the Royals’ 1985 World Series win.
Your Franchise Marketing Takeaway?
Sure, everything aligned almost cosmically — the fact that Levi’s is based in San Francisco, home of the Giants, makes the Lee vs. Levi’s rivalry a perfect parallel for the KC vs. SF World Series — but your franchise marketing department can still take a few cues from this campaign even if the dots are a little harder to connect.
The Lee’s marketing team did a great job of cheekily appealing to their hometown fanbase with nods to the Royals’ last Series win — 1985 echoed in the 85% discount — and capitalizing on the call to action of supporting the boys in blue by wearing KC’s own blue jeans. Throw in some charitable donations in two cities and an $1,000 giveaway, and — forgive us, we have to — Lee’s campaign is a home run.
One easy way to include any sporting event in your franchise marketing? Individual franchise locations can offer a victory discount to fans. Whether you opt for the Papa John’s route and provide an online discount the day following the win or ask consumers to stop in wearing their team gear to receive reduced rates in person, this promotion is easy to implement for almost any event, and can be customized region to region, making it ideal for franchises.
But what if your franchise has no direct connection to the World Series, no fanbase to nod to? You shouldn’t bench yourself just because your campaign won’t be as resonant. One reliable way to capitalize on any mainstream event that local customers will be watching is offering contingent discounts or giveaways. A classic example is Taco Bell’s giveaway, which they’ve done sporadically over the past few years, most recently offering a free Doritos Locos taco to all guests if a base was stolen during the World Series. Contigent giveaways and discounts like these work regardless of who’s playing. You’ll just want to be sure that the product or service you’re discounting isn’t something that will cost your franchise much.
Ticket giveaways are the ageless classic: a way to drive traffic to a website or social platform as the masses are motivated to win big. Franchise marketers should take note, though, that the big boost in social followers or web traffic shouldn’t be squandered. Make sure you have a plan in place to appeal to contest entrants so that they’ll stick around to hear your marketing messages even after the World Series concludes. Fair weather fans aren’t only in baseball, after all.
Forge a Winning Franchise Marketing Strategy
The team at Franchise Marketing Group features an all-star line-up of social media strategists, major email marketing maniacs, champion content creators, and more, all of whom can’t wait to help you create a franchise marketing strategy that leverages current public events and trends while providing long-lasting results.