PDA

View Full Version : Reds Brand/Business Model?



Ltlabner
08-12-2008, 07:41 PM
Not only does the direction of the franchise on the field seem adrift, I'm really lost as to what the current FO is doing in terms of business model and branding. What is it they are trying to sell us? Obviously it's not winning baseball. But the messages they attempt to sell are all over the map.

They've tried to draw fans to the stadium based on identities: Larkin, Griffey, Kearns, Bailey Cordero, etc. Sign a big name or hype a prospect such that the fanbase gets excited. The fanbase is conditioned to look for the next "silver bullet" player.

They've tried to draw fans based on a new stadium.

They've tried to draw fans by harkening back to days of yore. Whether it be getting scraptastic players (Sabo, Hatcher, Freel) or trotting out the next old Big Reds Machine member it seems like a lot of energy has gone into trying to sell the message that fans should come to the stadium because of a team 35 years ago.

They've certinally relied heavily on $1 dogs and crappy give-a-ways. Bobble-head nights seem to draw well, but did the BBQ aprons really do much to boost gate attendence or attract new fans?

They've tried targeting different groups. You've got the family sections, all you can eat sections and party decks. Yet, none of those seem to blend together around a common theme (you'd think it would be baseball).

Last Saturday night it really struck me how completley disjointed all of the pregame activies are. First, you have complete faux excitement. You've got people lining up for the 3 or 4 cerimonial first pitches, the MDX crew trying to catch rings on their head, Gapper running around feeling up attractive moms, players milling around and the cheerleaders off to the side doing a dance number. Serriously, it's total trainwreck that's topped off by a retrospective video of great Reds past. Is that mess really what somone in the business department really thinks fans want?

Now they have three mascotts. Three.

I just can't get a read on what business model they are trying to set up. Are they trying to be low cost entertainment? A place for young hipsters? A place to see and be seen? A team soaked in history? An alternative to movies and paintball? All of the above? None of the above?

They have zero brand identity, zero brand excitement and zero brand draw.

The answer is obvious, win stinking baseball games, and the branding stuff will come. You would think that'd be a no brainer. But the FO seems to be working overtime trying to come up with different messages without any of them building around a theme or seemingly aimed at anything more than random targets. (I understand that it's not an easy task with such a horrable product).

They remind me of the well-meaning parents who half-heartedly disciplined their child, and went on lots of vacations but can't figure out why she's a crack addict porn star.

RedsManRick
08-12-2008, 07:46 PM
The answer is obvious, win stinking baseball games, and the branding stuff will come. You would think that'd be a no brainer. But the FO seems to be working overtime trying to come up with different messages without any of them building around a theme or seemingly aimed at anything more than random targets. (I understand that it's not an easy task with such a horrable product).

Yup, fans go to baseball games to watch their team win the baseball game. Who would've thunk it would be so simple.

wolfboy
08-12-2008, 07:48 PM
They remind me of the well-meaning parents who half-heartedly disciplined their child, and went on lots of vacations but can't figure out why she's a crack addict porn star.

You had me until the "crack addict porn star" comment. :confused: But, uh...otherwise I'd agree.

Unassisted
08-12-2008, 07:55 PM
I would guess that the branding decisions are made 100% independently of the baseball decisions. The two trades really gutted the ability to market the squad based on stars and HRs. Look for the marketing efforts for the remainder of the season to focus on the appeal of enjoying a night at the ballpark and cheering for the hometown team. It would be foolish to try to do any major repositioning with so few weeks left in the season and so many question marks about the '09 roster.

I don't envy FSN Ohio's or WLW's promotion team. They're really stuck putting lipstick on a pig to get people to sit through these games.

Joseph
08-12-2008, 08:01 PM
Problem is, in terms of the model, you can't use simply one.

Some baseball fans [read:RZ] want a winner first and foremost.

Believe it or not though, some fans go for the atmosphere of the park. The giveaways, the dollar dogs, the music on the concourse. Still other fans see a bad product currently, though they love baseball, so they will come for the history and nostalgia...the BRM and such.

I agree though that the pregame festivities at the game are disjointed at best. I don't think you need to intro all those groups. Just have the cheerleaders there. Just have the Pepsi Crew there. Don't intro them and make a big deal of it....although thats sponsorship supported and the Reds likely have to do it. Maybe they should do it between innings or something.

Blimpie
08-12-2008, 08:08 PM
I couldn't agree more with what has been posted. The absence of any sort of consistent branding message has long been one of my biggest frustrations with the team management.

Ever since the end of the BRM, there has been a clear lack of any sort of grassroots promotion for the Reds out side of--say--Hamilton County. Just look at the weapons that they now have at their disposal: 100,000 watts of radio coverage, a regional Fox affiliate, the Internet, and various MLB packages--the ROI for expanding the reach of your branding messages have never been more affordable. Of course, if they spend money so foolishly on the actual talent, it only stands to reason that they will also mismanage the marketing/PR budget as well.

My son is nearly ten years old and is an ardent Reds fan. Sometimes, I try to glimpse the state of the Reds "nation" through his eyes. The last two weeks have been especially tough on him BECAUSE of the way the PR folks have tried to enhance the visibility of Dunn and Griffey in recent years. Of course, they were doing the same with Kearns in 2005, as well....

Today's youth is tommorrow's sought-after demographic. To the best of my knowledge, my son is a Reds fan because his dad is a Reds fan. He has achieved no "buy-in whatsoever with the team, because the Reds have prioritized their stars over the team. This myopic strategy reeks of desperation and will eventually cause young fans to stray to the Yankees, Red Sox, or whomever is the flavor of the month on Baseball Tonight.

top6
08-12-2008, 10:49 PM
Everyone says "just win," but go back and look at the 1999 attendance figures.

edabbs44
08-12-2008, 10:57 PM
Everyone says "just win," but go back and look at the 1999 attendance figures.

There's always an excuse. If they are "winning", then maybe they aren't in the pennant race. If they are in the race and winning, then maybe it isn't late enough since fans don't come out until the summer. If it is late enough, then maybe they aren't trusted enough.

Ltlabner
08-12-2008, 11:05 PM
Everyone says "just win," but go back and look at the 1999 attendance figures.

Takes more than one winning season surrounded by years of crap to drive up attendence numbers.


There's always an excuse. If they are "winning", then maybe they aren't in the pennant race. If they are in the race and winning, then maybe it isn't late enough since fans don't come out until the summer. If it is late enough, then maybe they aren't trusted enough.

So you are arguing against the idea that winning leads to increased attendence?

So what is the key then? More mascots?

nate
08-12-2008, 11:05 PM
So what is the key then? More mascots?

More catchers.

vaticanplum
08-12-2008, 11:10 PM
I firmly believe that it would behoove the Reds to bring in marketing people from outside of baseball and pay them well enough to stay long-term and build something fresh and consistent. If they do have non-baseball folks in there already, then they're not serving the purpose such people should serve, and regardless I'm pretty sure it's not a collection of well-paid jobs.

Ltlabner
08-12-2008, 11:14 PM
I firmly believe that it would behoove the Reds to bring in marketing people from outside of baseball and pay them well enough to stay long-term and build something fresh and consistent. If they do have non-baseball folks in there already, then they're not serving the purpose such people should serve, and regardless I'm pretty sure it's not a collection of well-paid jobs.

Agree 100%.

They do some nice things but it's all a mish-mash. They are trying the shotgun method and it's not working IMO. Like you said, consistency of message is key.

Some nights I've been at GABP and I've got one guy stuffing a Ohio lotto bingo card in one hand and a Dusty Baker beach towel in the other as I walk in the gate. Eagles swoop down to home plate before the first pitch. Anouncements for the Build-A-Bear booth are blaring. Oh look over there, its some patio tables and a wall of TV's :confused:

It's a trainwreck.

BuckeyeRedleg
08-12-2008, 11:41 PM
Agree 100%.

They do some nice things but it's all a mish-mash. They are trying the shotgun method and it's not working IMO. Like you said, consistency of message is key.

Some nights I've been at GABP and I've got one guy stuffing a Ohio lotto bingo card in one hand and a Dusty Baker beach towel in the other as I walk in the gate. Eagles swoop down to home plate before the first pitch. Anouncements for the Build-A-Bear booth are blaring. Oh look over there, its some patio tables and a wall of TV's :confused:

It's a trainwreck.

Agree.

Cincinnati is supposed to be a "baseball town" built on years of tradition. The gimmicks are cheesy and minor league. It's all just noise to me. I miss the days at Riverfront when all you heard was the "Charge" horn, the bland PA announcer, and the planes flying overhead pulling the flag advertisements.

I can't imagine how awesome Crosley must have been.

Why must everything be a circus nowadays? Are we that worried about losing the younger demographic's attention? Give them good baseball with drama and they will be into it.

I'm also for going back to no facial hair and all white uniforms from the early 70's. Maybe it's stale, but baseball and especially Reds baseball is about tradition......and WINNING.

VR
08-13-2008, 12:35 AM
Organizational Competence.

westofyou
08-13-2008, 01:05 AM
Signage.. the key is signage.

Team goal is to Increase exposure and one stop name recognition, that's the goal... the brand is looking for a spokesperson, the marketing team hasn't seen one yet, thus they embrace minutia that stirs nostalgic emotions in hope that in turn creates the need to reaffirm those feelings with your spawn and thus create a new consumer base for future market avenues.

Chip R
08-13-2008, 11:11 AM
I firmly believe that it would behoove the Reds to bring in marketing people from outside of baseball and pay them well enough to stay long-term and build something fresh and consistent. If they do have non-baseball folks in there already, then they're not serving the purpose such people should serve, and regardless I'm pretty sure it's not a collection of well-paid jobs.


I think their marketing has improved by leaps and bounds from where it used to be before Bob took over.

There are going to be a million or so fans who are going to come watch the Reds no matter how poor they do or who's playing for them. You could drag 25 guys off the street and put them in Reds unis and they would come out to watch them play. So they have to do something to get a million more people out to watch them play. So they have bobblehead nights and jersey giveaways and whatnot.

Reds marketing used to be an oxymoron. Right up there with military intelligence and jumbo shrimp. When Jr. came here they put all their eggs in the Jr. basket even though they had plenty of other marketable players out there. After Jr. was hurt they had no backup plan. The Reds were losing and it wasn't pretty. They resorted to simple, cheap measures to draw people to games. When they put billboards up it would be on back streets in OTR instead of on the freeways.

Could the Reds have done more to market Jr. and Dunn? Probably but it's tough selling a product that is the antithesis of what the people want to buy. Especially if they were surrounded by a sub-par company. You can have the best product on the market but if your company and the other products you sell are poorly ran and sub-par, people are going to be hesitant to buy the good stuff. People would rather buy crap from a well run company than good stuff from a poorly run one.

WOY is correct. They can't sell winning and they can't sell Dunn and Jr. so they sell nostalgia. But it seems that every time they try to sell someone they have problems Arroyo was The Man after 2006. He pitches! He sings! He has long hair! When he came back to earth all of a sudden his singing was interferring with his pitching and he was a hippie. The Reds seem to have the Midas touch in reverse.

vaticanplum
08-13-2008, 12:32 PM
I think their marketing has improved by leaps and bounds from where it used to be before Bob took over.

I think the print marketing has improved and I agree that they do an ok job selling the players. Yes, the players keep getting shipped out of town, but that's not the marketing department's fault. They can't get keyed into a trade ahead of time, and even if they could it'd be death to market that way. And I have no problem with promotions. That's par for the course in MLB these days.

But their television and radio advertising is abysmal, they do a fair to poor job communicating with the more devoted fanbase, and the lack of consistent, catchy, creative branding (alliterative or not) hurts them.

You can't blame poor marketing on a poor product alone. That's exactly one of the main points of marketing, to make the bad look better. If the Reds were a fantastic team there'd be a far lesser need for good marketing.

westofyou
08-13-2008, 12:42 PM
But their television and radio advertising is abysmal, they do a fair to poor job communicating with the more devoted fanbase, and the lack of consistent, catchy, creative branding (alliterative or not) hurts them.

Have you noticed the quality of advertisers THEY get for their TV games?

I watch a lot of baseball and without a doubt the ads run during the Reds games are the lowest grade of product and production values out there IMO....Farmers Only, A&E Windows, Alamo Electronics and a processed meat company are the biggest dogs in the house.

Maybe it's not just the Reds and TV/Radio Advertising that is abysmal, but perhaps the bar has already been set so low that they don't feel the need to overspend in that market just yet.

Unassisted
08-13-2008, 12:47 PM
Have you noticed the quality of advertisers THEY get for their TV games?

I watch a lot of baseball and without a doubt the ads run during the Reds games are the lowest grade of product and production values out there IMO....Farmers Only, A&E Windows, Alamo Electronics and a processed meat company are the biggest dogs in the house.

Maybe it's not just the Reds and TV/Radio Advertising that is abysmal, but perhaps the bar has already been set so low that they don't feel the need to overspend in that market just yet.That's a good point. I have a friend who does media buys for a handful of big companies in the midwest. The Reds ad sales force should be courting people like her, rather than the local yokels who buy for JTM and Skyline.

I think a lot of sports franchises and broadcasters are going to be feeling some pain if Anheuser Busch's new European owner tightens up the advertising pursestrings, which is rumored.

Chip R
08-13-2008, 01:35 PM
I think the print marketing has improved and I agree that they do an ok job selling the players. Yes, the players keep getting shipped out of town, but that's not the marketing department's fault. They can't get keyed into a trade ahead of time, and even if they could it'd be death to market that way. And I have no problem with promotions. That's par for the course in MLB these days.

But their television and radio advertising is abysmal, they do a fair to poor job communicating with the more devoted fanbase, and the lack of consistent, catchy, creative branding (alliterative or not) hurts them.

You can't blame poor marketing on a poor product alone. That's exactly one of the main points of marketing, to make the bad look better. If the Reds were a fantastic team there'd be a far lesser need for good marketing.


You've only lived here the last couple of years. Believe me the marketing was much worse back in the early part of the decade. I actually think they do a good job marketing the show on the radio. Did you know they have an hour show on Saturday mornings devoted solely to the Reds? This is also the first year the Reds have owned their own product as far as radio is concerned. I do agree with you that the TV marketing is poor. Many moons ago we had a thread on here where folks came up with some great ideas for TV commercials. It seems the Reds just rely on Fox Sports to do their commercials. I'm guessing that they are the same commercials for every team but they change what the people are wearing when they film for a different team. I don't have Extra Innings so I really can't tell if they are any better or worse than other teams.

You can only do so much with marketing. You can put a dress and lipstick on a pig but it's still a pig. We make fun of Cubs fans who fill up Wrigley Field year after year no matter how bad the Cubs are doing but we criticize our own fans for not showing up to watch a losing team. BuckeyeRedleg and ltlabner lamented that the Reds are using gimmicks to entertain/draw the customers. Others feel the Reds aren't doing enough. I think we can all agree that winning trumps all but it's certainly no guarantee that the fans are going to come out and watch them play.



IMO....Farmers Only, A&E Windows, Alamo Electronics and a processed meat company are the biggest dogs in the house.

City folks just don't get it. ;)

Roy Tucker
08-13-2008, 01:49 PM
I was down in Florida recently and watched some Rays games on Fox Sports Florida (or whatever its called). All the production seemed exactly the same, theme music, graphics, etc.

I agree with what Chip has said. Under Castellini, marketing has gotten better. It still isn't good, but it better than the awful it was before. And it is improving.

I do wish they'd bring back "Star of the Game" on Reds radio after the game.

jmcclain19
08-13-2008, 02:20 PM
Everyone says "just win," but go back and look at the 1999 attendance figures.

Winning rarely helps the current season attendance - you always see the bump up in the following season for teams that suddenly turn into winners overnight.

Detroit - WS in 2006 - bump of 5k per night in 2007
White Sox - WS in 2005 - bump of 10k per night in 2006
Rockies WS in 2007 - bump of 5k per night in 2008

The Reds averaged over 6k more fans a game in 2000 than they did in 1999. I'm sure Junior helped as well but 2000 is the only season in the last 12 where they've pulled in over 30k a game.

BuckeyeRedleg
08-13-2008, 02:24 PM
One of the best years for attendance was 2000, the year after they won 96 games and almost made the playoffs. They went from 1.8M in 1998, to 2.1M in 1999, to 2.6M in 2000.

I think since then the ballpark has helped to keep them averaging around 2M-2.2M.

westofyou
08-13-2008, 02:26 PM
Winning is everything for Reds fans... period, they have never drawn well as a middle of the road club.

They are the ONLY team to boast of a all time attendance record that occurred over 30 years ago.

During the BRM... hence why the ghost of that club is all over town still.

durl
08-13-2008, 02:36 PM
Winning fills the stands. There have been odd exceptions in the past (Chicago Cubs) but nothing generates excitement like winning.

While some may ridicule the marketing efforts of the Reds, those efforts would probably not receive criticism in a forum thread if the team were winning. Every team has to do things to get fans into the stands that go beyond the players on the field. Those efforts simply stand out more when the play on the field is less exciting than $1 hot dogs.

And those 3 mascots aren't there for fans that have memorized the OPS numbers of players on both teams, they're there for the kids. 3 mascots can cover more ground than 1, plus you have 3 times the merchandise available to kids.

Chip R
08-13-2008, 02:42 PM
During the BRM... hence why the ghost of that club is all over town still.


That and it's only been 30 some years since. There aren't many franchises that can say their glory days occured sometime in the past 30-35 years. Most of those players are still alive and prominent in either the community or in the game. Kids who were fans then are adults now. You don't see many Dodger fans around pining for the Boys of Summer. Most Cubs fans have no idea who Tinker or Evers or Chance were. While Yankee fans remember their history quite well, they don't pine for the days of Ruth, Gehrig, DiMaggio or Mantle. More than likely because they have been so good recently.

Reds fans are reminded daily of the BRM. Whether it's Pete Rose being spotted at a casino or Joe Morgan on ESPN or Johnny Bench pimping a book or even Ken Griffey, Jr. bringing back memories of Ken Griffey, Sr. George Foster's always around the ballpark and Marty's still calling the games on the radio. It's difficult to just put that in the past and move on since it's in your face all the time.

bucksfan2
08-13-2008, 03:23 PM
The goal is to get fans in the stands. Plain and simple. The easiest way to do that is by winning. But as we all have seen the Reds have spend a decade trying to win games but still haven't figured it out. So the Reds have to resort to different measures in order to fill the stands.

The Reds are probably going to average 2M fans a season regardless. There are very few people who don't enjoy going to a major league game. My wife hates watching baseball on TV but likes going down to the park. A few years ago we went to Wrigley and she didn't like it as much as GABP because there wasn't a jumbotron and she had to pay attention to know what was happening. The Reds will always draw fans like that from the Cincinnati area. The major key for the Reds and the marketing department is to get the casual fan to step into the stadium more than they already are.

The biggest obstical to most is cost. A $10 ticket with $5-$10 parking as well as $10-20 food and drink cost add up real quick. Especially if you are taking a family or more than just yourself. I like to have a beer or two at the game but when you look at it two beers plus a hotdog or hot pretzal and ive dropped $20. I can afford that, especially if I get a free ticket, but there are quite a few people who would rather hold onto their money.

IMO the biggest key for the Reds is to turn a baseball game into an event. The baseball purist don't like it so much but one baseball purist doesn't bring in the revenue that a family of 4 can potentially.

redsmetz
08-13-2008, 04:03 PM
Just taking a quick look at other team's websites, I looked at their promotional schedules for the seasons. I just looked at two, the Cardinals and the Yankees and they're chock full of the same promotions as the Reds have (the Yankees have some cool ones coming up before the season's end - a lunchbox game and a Snoopy Yankees uniform game).

As for ticket prices, the Reds continue to be in the lower echelons of ticket prices overall. And baseball is significantly cheaper than their counterparts in the NFL and NBA.
As for other team's pricing, my daughter just moved to Atlanta for a year as a Jesuit Volunteer, and the office of the non-profit she'll be working at is right across I-75 from Turner Field. As I understand it, they have some tickets for just a buck, available three hours before game time, just a couple of hundred (I think I saw 186 tickets one place). They don't make much on the tickets, but then those folks spend money at the game too.

The Reds have made much progress since Castellini has taken over. We've said this before, but the return of the Reds caravan in the off season will continue to help. It was a huge mistake on the Reds part to walk away from that because we absolutely need the four or five state region that was formerly "Reds Country" to be a viable ML franchise. And we need to be sure MLB doesn't take away territories that were as much the Reds as they were the Pirates or the Indians, etc.

Blimpie
08-13-2008, 04:11 PM
Winning fills the stands. There have been odd exceptions in the past (Chicago Cubs) but nothing generates excitement like winning.I would amend your quote to say that "prolonged" winning fills the stands.

There needs a be a perpetual winning culture established; not just making a late-season run and winning the World Series.

Your case study is the Florida Marlins.

Blimpie
08-13-2008, 04:17 PM
Reds fans are reminded daily of the BRM. Whether it's Pete Rose being spotted at a casino or Joe Morgan on ESPN or Johnny Bench pimping a book or even Ken Griffey, Jr. bringing back memories of Ken Griffey, Sr. George Foster's always around the ballpark and Marty's still calling the games on the radio. It's difficult to just put that in the past and move on since it's in your face all the time.IMO, he's part of the branding problem--not the solution. Granted, he is your continuity piece and resident historian for the BRM...

But he is also one of the main reasons that fans could find themselves feeling (a) guilty or (b) ignorant when they decide to cheer for the Reds from in the cars or their living rooms.

Chip R
08-13-2008, 04:33 PM
The goal is to get fans in the stands. Plain and simple. The easiest way to do that is by winning. But as we all have seen the Reds have spend a decade trying to win games but still haven't figured it out. So the Reds have to resort to different measures in order to fill the stands.

The Reds are probably going to average 2M fans a season regardless. There are very few people who don't enjoy going to a major league game. My wife hates watching baseball on TV but likes going down to the park. A few years ago we went to Wrigley and she didn't like it as much as GABP because there wasn't a jumbotron and she had to pay attention to know what was happening. The Reds will always draw fans like that from the Cincinnati area. The major key for the Reds and the marketing department is to get the casual fan to step into the stadium more than they already are.


As much as we hardcore fans like to scoff at the casual fan, their money is as green as ours.


The biggest obstical to most is cost. A $10 ticket with $5-$10 parking as well as $10-20 food and drink cost add up real quick. Especially if you are taking a family or more than just yourself. I like to have a beer or two at the game but when you look at it two beers plus a hotdog or hot pretzal and ive dropped $20. I can afford that, especially if I get a free ticket, but there are quite a few people who would rather hold onto their money.

I'd say cost is more of an excuse than an obstacle. GAB is one of the least expensive places to watch a game for tickets, parking and concessions. However attendance is up in baseball overall. If cost is such an issue, people would be staying home instead of going to the stadium(s). If the Reds record were reversed, they would be drawing 10,000 more a night for sure. Most people aren't going out to watch a game for aesthetic purposes. They want one team or the other to win. If their team wins, they forget about how much it costs to go to the game. So the team either needs to win or the club needs to make it worth your while to come out and watch.


IMO the biggest key for the Reds is to turn a baseball game into an event. The baseball purist don't like it so much but one baseball purist doesn't bring in the revenue that a family of 4 can potentially.


You have to be careful in making it into an event that you don't make it into a circus. I think that's where a lot of purists have problems. They probably don't mind the giveaways as much as they mind the rock music blaring between innings or the stuff that goes on the field between innings or the mascot races on the scoreboard or on the field. There's no simple solution to keep everyone happy. Winning is a solution but it's hardly simple.

BCubb2003
08-13-2008, 04:43 PM
I agree that the marketing is a lot better lately. It's always going to be more like hometown car dealer quality than network quality global Nike coolness. With a few exceptions, baseball is like that.

Here's an alternate history:

After an agonizingly close '99 season, the arrival of Griffey puts the Reds into the postseason. Kearns, Dunn and Griffey make an All Star/Hall of Fame heart of the order. Fans flock to the new ballpark to see Griffey chase Ruth and Aaron, for a string of sell-out seasons that surpasses Cleveland's, plus several trips to the World Series and a championship. People talk about how Mr. Lindner brought winning baseball back to Cincinnati, and of course, the wonderful things he did for sick kids.

It was in a book some guy named Biff showed me once. It might have been a dream. There was a strange car, and the kid from "Family Ties." And the weird guy from "Taxi." Or was it the weird guy from "Seinfeld"? I woke up.

bucksfan2
08-13-2008, 04:52 PM
I'd say cost is more of an excuse than an obstacle. GAB is one of the least expensive places to watch a game for tickets, parking and concessions. However attendance is up in baseball overall. If cost is such an issue, people would be staying home instead of going to the stadium(s). If the Reds record were reversed, they would be drawing 10,000 more a night for sure. Most people aren't going out to watch a game for aesthetic purposes. They want one team or the other to win. If their team wins, they forget about how much it costs to go to the game. So the team either needs to win or the club needs to make it worth your while to come out and watch.


I agree a little here and disagree a little. Cost is an excuse but it also is a problem. I would assume that a casual fan would be more interested in going to a game if they didn't have to buy a ticket versus having to buy a ticket down at the gate. There are ways to get around the cost by bringing a cooler to the game and buying a cheaper ticket. A family of four can go to a game and have ok seats from around $40 if they don't buy any food.

It would be interesting to see what the average amount spent a game by each person in attendance. As someone mentioned above the Braves offering $1 ticket would be a great deal here. If the seats are going to go unsold your are better off getting what you can and banking on people buying food, beer, drinks, etc.


You have to be careful in making it into an event that you don't make it into a circus. I think that's where a lot of purists have problems. They probably don't mind the giveaways as much as they mind the rock music blaring between innings or the stuff that goes on the field between innings or the mascot races on the scoreboard or on the field. There's no simple solution to keep everyone happy. Winning is a solution but it's hardly simple.

I agree that you don't want to make it a circus atmosphere but at the same time you have to attract the casual fan. Give-a-way days and dollar dog days are a great way to get fans to the stadium. The Reds need to play to the causal baseball fan because the hard core fan will always be there. You also want to attract the younger generation. One of the things I used to love about Riverfront was that redlegs race on the scoreboard. You know the race with the old school graphics? That was great, I used to love seing that at a Reds game. That didn't make me a fan but it was something I looked foreward to. I also used to collect each teams soft serve hat. IMO the Reds are at risk of losing a generation. The generation that was too young to remember 90 or even the mid 90's and all they remember is the losing.

If I am a marketing guy I am not going to market towards you, me, or for that matter anyone on Redszone. Although I do think a cheap beer day would be great. I am going to go to the games regardless. I will probably go to 8-10 games a year. If the Reds are in a playoff hunt I may go to more. I am going to do my best to get the casual fan to spend his entertainment dollars with me.

Chip R
08-13-2008, 06:07 PM
I agree a little here and disagree a little. Cost is an excuse but it also is a problem. I would assume that a casual fan would be more interested in going to a game if they didn't have to buy a ticket versus having to buy a ticket down at the gate. There are ways to get around the cost by bringing a cooler to the game and buying a cheaper ticket. A family of four can go to a game and have ok seats from around $40 if they don't buy any food.

The way I see it, the economy isn't any better or worse here than in any other MLB city. Let's use Boston for an example. They won the World Series last year. They had around 7 home playoff games. Playoff games cost a helluva lot more than regular season games plus Boston always has the most expensive tickets plus tickets are usually at a premium there. But they had no problems selling out all their games. Is the economy any better in Boston than here? I doubt it. Are there a huge amount of people in the Boston area with money to burn on Sox tickets? I doubt that either. Colorado had to have a playoff game to get in to the playoffs plus the next two rounds and 2 games in the World Series. I'm sure there were some fans for whom it was too expensive for. But there were fans who justified the cost. If people want something bad enough, they will find a way to afford it. It doesn't matter if it's season tickets, playoff tickets, a new car or a HDTV with a plasma screen. [/quote]



It would be interesting to see what the average amount spent a game by each person in attendance. As someone mentioned above the Braves offering $1 ticket would be a great deal here. If the seats are going to go unsold your are better off getting what you can and banking on people buying food, beer, drinks, etc.

I agree that you don't want to make it a circus atmosphere but at the same time you have to attract the casual fan. Give-a-way days and dollar dog days are a great way to get fans to the stadium. The Reds need to play to the causal baseball fan because the hard core fan will always be there. You also want to attract the younger generation. One of the things I used to love about Riverfront was that redlegs race on the scoreboard. You know the race with the old school graphics? That was great, I used to love seing that at a Reds game. That didn't make me a fan but it was something I looked foreward to. I also used to collect each teams soft serve hat. IMO the Reds are at risk of losing a generation. The generation that was too young to remember 90 or even the mid 90's and all they remember is the losing.

If I am a marketing guy I am not going to market towards you, me, or for that matter anyone on Redszone. Although I do think a cheap beer day would be great. I am going to go to the games regardless. I will probably go to 8-10 games a year. If the Reds are in a playoff hunt I may go to more. I am going to do my best to get the casual fan to spend his entertainment dollars with me.


The Reds had $5 view level seats last week and it doesn't look like they drew any more than if they would have kept them at the regular price. A few times this year I've offered an extra ticket to someone for free and nobody took me up on it. Now it could be that they have to sit by me but Kitty doesn't seem to mind too much. ;) Just as people will pay what they have to do if they want something bad enough, if they don't want to do it, you can't pay them to go.

It's a fine line you have to walk if you want to appeal to both the casual fan and the traditionalist. You mentioned you loved the scoreboard race back at Riverfront. There were probably some people who thought that was an abomination.

top6
08-13-2008, 06:40 PM
IMO, he's part of the branding problem--not the solution. Granted, he is your continuity piece and resident historian for the BRM...

But he is also one of the main reasons that fans could find themselves feeling (a) guilty or (b) ignorant when they decide to cheer for the Reds from in the cars or their living rooms.

I absolutely agree with this. I actually think the Reds' marketing has been OK, but it's pretty hard to promote a product when the person who most people associate with it is always trashing it. How much harder was it to market Dunn when you had beloved, cherished institution Marty B. deriding him every night?

Ltlabner
08-13-2008, 06:42 PM
You have to be careful in making it into an event that you don't make it into a circus. I think that's where a lot of purists have problems. They probably don't mind the giveaways as much as they mind the rock music blaring between innings or the stuff that goes on the field between innings or the mascot races on the scoreboard or on the field. There's no simple solution to keep everyone happy. Winning is a solution but it's hardly simple.

Wow, thanks. That sums up my thoughts perfectly.

I don't mind the music, and games, and videos, and mascots and such. There are some that are poorly done, but in general, the issue is the individual activty itself, it's just that there seems to be no consistant message. There's nothing binding them together other than they all occur within the confines of GABP.

It's probably an impossible task to be consistant when your only message is that great team 35 years ago. Everything ends up being a shotgun mess o activity instead of a coheriant set of seemingly disperate activities that all reference back to the original message.

And there's nothing wrong with referencing the BRM every 10 minutes. You don't think the Yanks and Red Sox aren't selling the crap out of "history"? But the way they go about it is so....well....cheep. It's more of a plea to come to the stadium soley because Geroge Foster will be there (does he live in the basement or something) instead of it flowing into where we're headed.

I don't know...it's all very "touchy feely". It's like trying to force yourself into loving someone instead of actually being in love. Lots of the same feelings and actions but not quite the same thing.

I'm sure my thoughts are all over the place and I'm not explaining it well. But generally speaking the bolded part of your reply sums it up nicely.

vaticanplum
08-14-2008, 06:37 PM
Chip, I don't argue that they've improved on the whole. I just still think they could do a lot better. There is a real "do just what you have to" feel to a lot of their marketing.

Chip R
08-14-2008, 07:56 PM
Chip, I don't argue that they've improved on the whole. I just still think they could do a lot better. There is a real "do just what you have to" feel to a lot of their marketing.


I agree. But Rome wasn't built in a day.

vaticanplum
08-14-2008, 11:09 PM
I agree. But Rome wasn't built in a day.

Well, yes. You got me there ;)