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A summary of the most exciting news in multicultural sports marketing. If you’re trying to keep up, consider this your one-stop shop.

  • Major League Baseball will now include content in the Discovery Education’s Science Techbooks, thanks to a new multiyear partnership with Discovery Education. Educators will help students connect the world of baseball to key science and STEM concepts through real-world data and gameday experiences that fuel deeper engagement.

 

  • PUMAPuma has become the official partner of League of Legends Championship Series (LCS) team and will have its logo on the chest of the team’s jersey. The partnership also designates Puma as the official gameday pants and shoes provider of Cloud9 and includes uniforms for team management. “This deal gives us ability to be a part of more things our kids love, and that’s how our brand moves the culture forward,” said Matt Shaw, head of digital marketing for Puma, to the Esports Observer. “Cloud9 is really uniquely posed to help us do that.”
    The deal will initially cover the 2019 spring LCS season, with the possibility to expand their collaboration.

The Portada Brand-Sports Summit in Los Angeles on March 15, 2019 (Hotel Loews Santa Monica) will provide a unique setting for brand marketers to learn about the opportunities sports and soccer content offers to engage consumers in the U.S. and Latin America.

  • UFC has signed a new integrated marketing partnership with Motel 6, that makes the chain UFC’s first-ever “Official Economy Lodging Partner,” creating a new sponsorship category for the MMA promotion. Motel 6 will have a branded presence inside UFC’s Octagon for select UFC events. Also, the deal includes in-venue commercials, branded integrations in select UFC Pay-Per-Views and collaborations on digital and social media campaigns.

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  • PGATOURLAPGA TOUR Latinoamerica announced that Volvo Car Latin America, Hilton, and Go Vacaciones! will join as category-exclusive partners of the PGA TOUR’s international tour, beginning this month. The three brands will be integrated into the messaging of PGA TOUR Latinoamerica and will also receive brand-official designations.

 

  • Multiplayer online battle arena Arena of Valor’s started the third season of the Valor Series with 18 top teams from Europe, Latin America, and North America competing for a $200,000 prize pool. The tournament will kick off on Feb. 2 from noon-7:30p on its Facebook page. Each region will sport its own open qualifier phase where six teams will qualify for that region’s eight-week regular season.

What: The PGA Tour is continuing its partnership with social media network mitú, which reaches a massive, cross-cultural audience.
Why it matters: Hispanics aren’t traditionally huge golf consumers, but some specific strategies by the PGA Tour can help it market its Latino stars and build that fan base.

Lee Trevino, known as the “Merry Mex,” and “Chi-Chi” Rodriguez made their respective marks on the PGA Tour in decades past. And while most true golf fans will instantly recognize the names of those two golfing greats, they may be hard-pressed to identify a current player of Hispanic descent (hint: Mexican-American Pat Perez is the highest ranked at No. 25, and Jhonattan Vegas (@JhonattanVegasand Camilo Villegas (@CamiloVillegasRwere all part of a social media effort last year).

The personalities that Trevino and Rodriguez brought to the sport elevated their fandom across many generations, and among Hispanics and non-Hispanics alike. Vegas’s unlikely route from Maturín, Venezuela—a city and country not known for producing golf talent—and Villegas’s outsized personality—the female contingent following the Medellín, Colombia, native compares favorably with just about anyone on Tour—give Hispanic fans an easy pair to root for among a growing crop.

Trevino, Rodriguez and the current pros aside, golf has quite a task attracting a fan base considerably more familiar with the soccer pitch than the fairway.

The PGA Tour made a splash last year when it teamed with mitú (@wearemitu), a top content creator for young Latinos, for the aforementioned program with Vegas and Villegas (Spain’s Jon Rahm was also featured). The next phase is a series of videos, which according to SportsBusiness Journal’s John Lombardo won’t involve the players but instead follows young Latino fans as they learn about the game and its appeal.

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Camilo Villegas (credit: Steven Newton)

With others like youngsters Sebastián Muñoz (also of Colombia) and Emiliano Grillo of Argentina, both just 25, on the rise, courting the Hispanic fan base is a smart move for the Tour, which operates a series of events known as PGA Tour Latinoamérica (@PGATOURLA), in Mexico, Argentina, South Florida USA, Ecuador, the Dominican Republic and other countries, helping to boost the game there and serving as a feeder tour to develop new talent.

“We’re focused on showing how much fun golf, its stars and events can be to an audience that is seeking new and authentic experiences,” said Nelson Silverio, Senior Director of Marketing for the TOUR in a statement. “Our mitú partnership gives us the opportunity to show the PGA TOUR and its stars in a voice that is relevant to this audience.”

Trevino, Rodriguez and the current pros aside, golf has quite a task attracting a fan base considerably more familiar with the soccer pitch than the fairway. The effectiveness of the efforts with Vegas and Villegas last year is unclear, but any dent the Tour can put in bringing the growing Latino audience into the sport would be welcomed.

cover image: Jhonattan Vegas (courtesy PGA Tour)

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