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So far The Team has created 421 blog entries.

What can we learn from Sports Brands? #33 – The Brand

As legend has it, a gaggle of players was assembled in the locker room awaiting the start of the NBA All-Star game's three-point shooting contest when Larry Bird walked in. “So,” he said with a broad grin, “who’s playing for second?” Perhaps as much as his basketball acumen–he did indeed go on to win the three-point shooting contest that day– the predicate for Larry the Legend’s iconic brand was his swagger. It was an unlikely swagger: in a world of fast, agile black men who could seemingly jump out of the gym, Bird was a lumbering white guy who might not have been able to clear a shoe box in a single bound. The “Hick from French Lick” [...]

Marketing Memories

Reading  a middle-aged man’s  reminiscence about a high-school classmate who was a gifted athlete raises a question: can memories make for good marketing. Here’s what was written; The first time I saw someone fly I was 18 years old. It was a cloudless, Midwestern, spring afternoon in 1983 and I was among a clutch of teenagers jostling for a rebound on a blacktop basketball court. Suddenly, seemingly out of nowhere, one boy soared above the throng, and with his lithe body framed in amber by the midday sun, slammed the ball through the hoop in one fell swoop, like a cobra plucking a baby bird from its nest. I’ve seen human beings fly many times since then–Sonny Rollins on [...]

By |2020-06-17T05:39:39+00:00May 20th, 2020|Tags: |0 Comments

What can we learn from Sports Brands? The Packers – The Brand

A 2017 survey by the number-crunching website Five Thirty Eight found that the most beloved team in the NFL is not the Dallas Cowboys, or New England Patriots, the San Francisco 49ers or the New York Giants. It is, by a fairly wide margin, the team in the league’s tiniest market:  the Green Bay Packers. With a population of 105,0000–you could actually squeeze the entire city into the University of Michigan football stadium and still have seats left over– Green Bay clearly punches above its weight when it comes to its fan base. Is it the Green and Gold colors, or the 13 NFL championships dating back to 1929, or its legendary tough-as-nails coach, Vince Lombardi, who seemed sent [...]

By |2020-06-17T03:45:13+00:00May 6th, 2020|Tags: , , , |0 Comments

The Story of Content

Had you asked the average Minnesotan in early 1991 to handicap that year’s U.S. Senate race, the vast majority would’ve no doubt told you that the chances of an obscure political science professor defeating a millionaire incumbent businessman were approximately the same as the proverbial snowball’s in hell. The problem, as is often the case, was money, or lack thereof. For every dollar that the challenger, Paul Wellstone, had in his campaign war chest, the incumbent, Rudy Boschwitz had 7. As it turns out, Wellstone had him right where he wanted him.  He would manage to squeeze by Boschwitz in one of the biggest upsets in American electoral history. Wellstone’s secret weapon? Storytelling. Coming two years after the breakout [...]

What can we learn from Sports Brands? #23 – The Brand

When LeBron James played for the Miami Heat, a man walked into a San Francisco bar one afternoon to catch an NBA game, sidling up next to a woman who appeared to be in her 60s. Miami was losing and the woman mentioned that she was from Cleveland, but there was something in the way she said it that left the man with the distinct impression that she was among the Cleveland fans left embittered by the “King’s” move from Ohio to South Beach. As the Heat mounted a comeback,  however, the woman became increasingly animated, raising her fists triumphantly in the air and exclaiming “Yes!” when LeBron hit a clutch shot.  Amused, the man asked the woman: “I [...]

When ‘Just the Facts’ Just isn’t Enough

As a friend tells the story,  he was watching a television reporter interview the pilot of a commercial jet that had had a close call nearly 2 years ago. It was pretty standard morning television: the stoic pilot with a crew cut and a military mien, dispassionately describing his maneuvers in the cockpit as though he were auditioning for the role of Joe Friday in a Dragnet sequel. And then the reporter asked the pilot what he was thinking at the critical moment when his survival, and that of his passengers, was very much in doubt. The pilot paused for what must’ve been three or four seconds, and his eyes began to nervously scan the middle distance. Finally, he [...]

By |2020-06-17T03:49:28+00:00March 25th, 2020|Tags: , |0 Comments

What can we learn from Sports Brands? #3 – The Brand

“Practice?” begins perhaps the most famous rant in history. “We're sitting here … I'm supposed to be the franchise player, and we're in here talking about practice. I mean, listen, we're talking about practice. Not a game. Not a game. Not a game. We're talking about practice. Not a game. Not the game that I go out there and die for and play every game like it's my last. Not the game. We're talking about practice, man.” The retired professional basketball player Allen Iverson may have been the most unique brand in marketing history. With his slight build, cornrows, ubiquitous tattoos, and rakish charm, Iverson’s uniquely authentic brand is equal parts Tupac and Peter Pan. He would neither give [...]

Branding Bible

Good brand marketing is a little bit like a good church. The pastor’s sermon represents the content, the parishioners in the pews are the audience, and the church is your online platform. But, do you have a Bible? The Bible for marketers is a documented content strategy which, like scripture, can be referenced for inspiration, guidance, continuity, and, ensures that your content team is all working from the same page. A documented content strategy, like the Bible, leaves nothing to chance and reduces the chances of misinterpretation. Studies show that marketers who have a documented strategy are more effective and more productive in almost every phase of the process when compared with their peers who have only a verbal [...]

What can we learn from Sports Brands? #5 – The Brand

Where have you gone Joe DiMaggio, Our nation turns its lonely eyes to you, With his bantamweight’s physique, and graceful gait,  Giuseppe Paolo DiMaggio–better known as a Joltin’ Joe–was the New York Yankees center fielder between 1936 and 1951. The son of an immigrant San Francisco fisherman, and Marilyn Monroe’s second husband, the Hall of Famer was also a symbol of America’s halcyon days before the country erupted in tribal clashes and civil unrest in the 1960s. That iconic quality made DiMaggio not just a lyrical touchstone for Simon and Garfinkel’s soundtrack for the movie, The Graduate, but also a uniquely successful brand in American marketing history. He hawked a New York bank, Bowery Savings and Loan, Wheaties, and [...]

Content that Kills

The prosecutors thought the case was a slam dunk: their evidence included the murder weapon, DNA, and witnesses who testified that the defendant was alone in a room with the victim when he was fatally shot. The only missing link in this murder trial nearly 25 years ago in suburban Washington DC was motive. Prosecutors had no earthly idea why the defendant murdered a friend of many years. Still, they were stunned when the jury came back with their verdict: Not Guilty. Whether we are conscious of it or not, people need stories, or linear narratives with colorful characters, a coherent plot and a beginning, a middle, and an end. Jurors didn’t buy the prosecution’s story because they needed [...]