Crown Imports’ John Alvarado: “You Need to Be on Every Platform to Reach Young Sports Fans”

What: Portada talked to John Alvarado, Crown Imports Senior Director of Brand Marketing, and a member of Portada’s Sports Marketing Board, about how his company’s brands target young U.S. sports fan.
Why it matters: As the owner of the Corona brand, the top-selling import beer in the U.S., Crown Imports uses sport sponsorships to engage millennial audiences.

John Alvarado“Brands are being challenged when trying to reach their consumers, and sports marketing has historically been a good platform to find a captive audience. However, the challenge right now is the segmentation in the sports world. There are so many sports properties, so many sporting events and the engagement level of the millennial consumer is not the same as it historically has been”, explains John Alvarado, Crown Imports Senior Director of Brand Marketing, and a member of Portada’s sports marketing board.


According to Alvarado, “A young Hispanic millennial in the U.S., for example, could be watching a soccer game on TV, at the same time he is tweeting about it, sharing information with his friends, and watching what is going on in other sports. This happens all at the same time.”

¿How can a Brand Reach the Younger Consumer through All Touch Points?

What has worked best for Crown Imports, owner of the Corona brand, the top-selling import in the U.S., and other beer brands like Modelo Especial, Victoria, and Pacífico, is a 360 degrees strategy. Doing this means having a great knowledge of the targeted market’s habits, and preferences, to know where to be, and when to be there.

Corona“We have found it very successful to leverage various media platforms and innovating points versus just trying to be at one place. Multiple 360 holistic approaches have allowed Corona to really connect with consumers across multiple touch points around sports. Because consumers are engaging with their sports teams or sports properties in different ways”, adds Alvarado.

Although traditional TV advertising still is key for the company, to really cover all possible touch points Crown Imports has chosen a strategic multiplatform approach with a presence on mobile, tablets, and computers, with emphasis on social media. All of this, without forgetting the offline experience.

“First of all, we need to do research in terms of understanding how consumers are interacting with different sports properties and sports events. After that we need to find a way to make sense for our brands to engage with them around those different touch points”, explains Alvarado.

There is one thing about sports marketing that won’t change: the passion that a sport awakens in a fan is the emotion brands want to connect their consumers with. The challenge is to stick out, among all the brands which are using the same connection. To do so, Alvarado sees one option: link the brand to experiences.

Also read Crown Imports’ John Alvarado: “The Latinization of America is a great opportunity to tap the Hispanic consumer”

“In boxing, for example, around a week before the fight, the audience wants to live a meaningful experience, inside of the boxers. They want to know about boxing strategies or information that is little available. Once you get closer to the day of the event, you can upgrade the experience of seeing the boxing belt, that is something very simple but the multicultural millennial consumer really likes to share this on its social channels, and let everyone know what he is experiencing”, says Alvarado.

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This is Alvarado’s three-step strategy to reach young, multicultural, sports fans

  1. Identify the property or sports platform that engages your target consumer. It doesn’t have to be for every consumer out there. Be thoughtful of who you really are trying to engage, and find that property that will allow you to do so.
  2. Find out how consumers are engaging around that property and think about it weeks before of the day of the game. Don’t just wait until the last day. This way, you can maximize your engagement for consumers, but also your investment.
  3. Fans are looking for meaningful and authentic experiences. Multicultural and millennial consumers are used to being advertised to, and they recognize when they are and they are fine with that. Find out how you can bring the brand’s assets to life, in a way that is meaningful to them.

CHECK OUT: Coca Cola’s Alban Dechelotte: “It’s Natural to Celebrate eSports Fans no differently than any other Passion Point.”