Breaking Records and Marketing Sports
Everybody loves a hero’s journey and, in effect, that’s what breaking records in sports represents, no matter what the record is. It might be attendance records for home games during a season; it might be what the Warriors recently experienced with them winning 25 road games over two seasons before losing hitting their fifth loss over the same time. That was a first for the NBA.
Such moments take a lot of effort. Sometimes a lot of planning and preparation as well. Think of when Hank Aaron broke the home run record, or way back in the “dark ages” of track and field when the first guy hit a four-minute mile. To the participants, they are no less meaningful than the accomplishments of walking on the moon for the first time.
But it’s not just about the accolades and kudos of the moment. Breaking records, setting new highs, winning at something no one has done before… those are something that gets added to resumes. Major marketing campaigns are built upon those moments. A good record-breaking event could significantly increase ticket sales, or an individual athlete’s marketing appeal long after his playing time is over.
Just like the record-breaking moment started with the first step, first win, first person sitting in the stands … many of the PR efforts attached with events start early on. It’s as much about building anticipation as it is about momentum. Creating suspense, because for all the times a record is broken, there were many attempts that fell just short or tied it. It would be a waste not to celebrate those attempts as well.
Sure if it didn’t quite get there, you don’t get to “put a ring on it” or add it to your resume as record-breaking, but the team still did better than almost anyone else. It’s like being the second or third best at something in the world. That may feel like a loss when the medals are handed out, but still… out of all the billions of people in the world, to be the third best at something is an amazing feat.
But when that brass ring is firmly in your grasp, and you’ve been part of breaking a record, it’s not just time to celebrate or even add it to your list of accomplishments. It is also time to start planning for the next record. You’ve just proven to yourself and everyone else that you are able to soar with the eagles and fight with the Warriors.
Make a big show of the victory, market the heck out of it and get all the publicity for your team and you that’s possible and then add more rungs to the victory ladder or start a new one. It’s money in the bank, as they say. No point in leaving it on the playing field.