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How March Madness can be a Marketing Slam Dunk

March 16, 2018

Check out how these companies are using March Madness to launch new marketing campaigns

With March Madness kicking off this week, this 21-day basketball extravaganza is a great opportunity for brands to reach millions of fans with new ad campaigns. With over 100 million viewers expected to watch these games, March Madness will be broadcast across different TV networks, and available to live stream on March Madness Live, CBS and Turner’s live streaming website and app. In fact, 89 percent of fans admit to live streaming on a second screen- a laptop, mobile phone or tablet- while watching a different game on their TV, according to USA Today. This makes March Madness the perfect opportunity for companies to reach millions of viewers with captivating advertising campaigns throughout the tournament.

Powerade

As the official sports drink of the NCAA, Powerade's marketing campaign, “That’s Some Kind of Power,” is using the tournament as a platform to rebrand. The campaign is made up of a series of 30-second spots that Powerade hopes will “build on Powerade’s deep roots in sports, utilizing hyperbole and humor to give powerful moments even more power.”

The first of six spots in the campaign, ‘Ankles,’ starred a bodega owner thinking about what his life could have been if he had Powerade in his life back when he was playing basketball. Since sporting events gain so many viewers, Powerade will continue this sport’s minded ad campaign on this year at sporting events including the 2018 World Cup.

Pizza Hut

Pizza and sports go hand-in-hand and Pizza Hut is once again rolling out their Pie Tops shoe campaign. With an increased number of people watching hours of college basketball, March Madness is a busy time for Pizza Hut locations across the country. Working with Dominic Chambrone, known as the Shoe Surgeon, Pizza Hut’s campaign debuts the shoe “Pie Tops II,” which will allow sneakerheads the ability to order pizza from a button on one of the shoes and pause the TV with a button on the other shoe. Pizza Hut will produce 250 pairs of Bluetooth-enabled shoes, hoping to sell 50 pairs before bringing and distributing the rest of the shoes to fans attending the Final Four in San Antonio.

While the new shoes will pause any live TV program, only a select amount of fans will actually own them. Therefore, Pizza Hut is using the shoe campaign to remind March Madness watchers how easy it is to order food from them without missing a beat in the game. 

Sammy Shapiro is an Intern at Bond Moroch.