Below is a news summary by Paige Jones, an Entertainment Management student at Missouri State University.
(from Sports Business Journal, April 16, 2012) Mountain Dewand NBC’s Alli Sports have reached a new title sponsorship deal on the Dew Tour to recreate a new experience for their viewers, fans, and athletes. The deal has altered the underlying management principles of the tour by decreasing the number of stop series and events, and allowing sponsors to authorize management decisions.
IMG, Mountain Dew’s Director of Brand Marketing, Ken Strnad, Nike, PepsiCo’s agency, Pepsi Sports Marketing Director, Mark Rooks, and Vermont-based Fuse will be involved in the management decisions.
This year and next, there will only be three-event series with stops at Breckenridge, Colorado, Ocean City, Maryland, and San Francisco, California. Alli Sports executives will have the opportunity to spectate the designs, layouts, and qualities of the events to ensure success. Strnad mentions, “We’re looking to evolve and innovate. We’re looking to make the most impactful broadcast, to make it a must-see and must-attend event.”
Strnad intends on providing a must-see and must-attend event by including concerts in a festival atmosphere and by increasing the hours per stop on television. He has collaborated with NBC Sports Network to air the events for 11 hours each weekend, 12 hours total over the three events, and 12 hours of prime-time programming.
As a result of the new sponsorship deal, the number of sponsors will be cut down to seven or eight, premium tickets will be paid by city sports and visitors commissions, and operating costs will decline in the television production sectors.
Alli Sports President, Wade Martin states, “We thought we could build a momentum from stop-to-stop-to-stop over time, but in the end, that’s not how fans consume action sports. They want great, unique content and athletes to always be progressing and evolving. The fixed model we were in didn’t allow for that.”
The new model does affect how marketers will sell the Dew Tour. They have to attempt to thrive corporate sponsorships into three events in three markets.