Picks of the Week: October 22, 2018
Can you think INSIDE the box? - Lockheed Martin’s Challenge Box
Lockheed Martin, a global security and aerospace company, released a video showcasing their latest space themed activation at Virginia Tech, aiming to recruit “the brightest engineer minds.” Although the company has had some controversy going on for being one of the biggest weapon manufacturers and the main defense contractor of the Pentagon, this video focuses on one of their lesser controversial business streams: space.
Potential reasons for this recruitment campaign could be linked to Lockheed Martin’s efforts to a) try to shift public perceptions and add on to the positive brand’s narrative, b) drive awareness and buzz to a different business segment while reaffirming its position as a tech and innovator leader in the space, c) to attract the right candidates using a creative experiential challenge and d) to demonstrate that their marketing is as advanced as the products/services they deliver – all objectives that brands aim to achieve when building their sponsorship and activation strategy.
The “Inside the Box” Challenge is a great example brands can leverage from for creative recruitment processes that can excite potential candidates while also amplifying their brand’s reach with a positive storyline that highlights accomplishments.
Summer 2018 NBA Jersey Patch Review - Look, Strategy and Market Fit of Deals
With the brand amplification success of the NBA jersey patches during the 2017/2018 season, it is not a surprise that six new deals have been penned during the 2018 NBA offseason. Largely the deals can be categorized into three distinct categories, local companies with longstanding team/community partnerships (Frost Bank x Spurs, FedEx x Grizzlies), smaller cap companies looking to connect with the NBA’s large national and global reach to gain significant awareness (Zenni Optical x Bulls, ROKiT x Rockets) and finally companies with a specific geographical targeting strategy (Paypal x Suns, Biofreeze x Trailblazers).
Below is a deeper dive into the Trailblazer x Biofreeze and Zenni Optical x Chicago Bulls deals to provide a deeper analysis of brand strategy and overall goals of each partnership.
1. Trailblazer x Biofreeze
Biofreeze brand is an external pain relief product used by many leading athletes to relieve sore muscle pain. The brand is part of Performance Health, the largest global manufacturer and distributor of products to the rehabilitation and sports medicine markets. Their larger asset package also includes investment in community programs with an emphasis on sports performance, wellness and injury recovery. After signing the jersey patch deal, Biofreeze partnered with Blazers star Damian Lilliard and added him to the brands celebrity ambassador stable (currently includes amongst others WTA player Sloane Stephens and Olympian Shaun White). This partnership seems to be very on brand in terms of their commitment to health with the most interesting factor being the specific targeting of the Pacific Northwest region, a population that over indexes in outdoor activity. Given that the Blazers are the only NBA team in the Pacific Northwest and the team has a dedicated fan base across the region, Biofreeze will have a great opportunity to use this deal to reach the larger community outside of Portland.
2. Zenni Optical x Chicago Bulls
Zenni Optical is a privately held e-commerce site that specializes in cheap direct to consumer prescription glasses. The company began in 2003 and is headquarter in Culver City, CA. Currently, Zenni is the leader in its e-commerce prescription glasses space and has sold more than 20 million pairs of glasses since the company’s initial launch. This is an interesting deal as it allows a Zenni, a successful growing startup, to reach global awareness something that could be difficult through traditional marketing channels. Also, this will allow for their brand to gain significant legitimacy in an increasingly crowded market by having it placed one of sport’s most iconic jerseys. It will be interesting track increase in brand awareness as a response to the deal and whether they can expand to new segments outside of their current customer base.