March 28, 2012 smz-blog

Sports Marketing 101: Get a Tebow


– Zak DeHondt, Art Director

When Tim Tebow was drafted in 2010, he set an NFL record for jersey sales by an NFL draftee. Even when he was a backup quarterback in Denver last year, his jersey sales were topping starting quarterback Kyle Orton’s.

His on-field performance has also sparked massive debates on ESPN and other sports networks about his highly controversial playing style. You can’t buy SportsCenter coverage for three months. You need a Tebow.

If you can buy coverage, it’s to allow HBO to film your team through training camp and then release a miniseries about it for the world to see. That’s exactly what the loud and rowdy New York Jets brand did in 2010 with the HBO series, “Hard Knocks.”

Fast forward to the opening of the 2012 season for the New York Jets. After failing on the field in 2011, they also now have the unique problem of fighting for relevance and ticket sales in the same market as the 2011 Super Bowl Champion New York Giants. So how can the New York Jets steal attention from the New York Giants before the season starts? Enter Tim Tebow: the human jersey machine.

So far it’s been wildly successful, as New York has already been plastered with everything from billboards to T-shirts to deli sandwiches honoring the pigskin-wielding star. And the Jets are really juicing it for all its worth as they had their first-ever news conference announcing a BACKUP QUARTERBACK.

Whether acquiring him was all marketing or partially for his playing style remains to be seen. But keep this in mind: the NFL draftee’s record Tim Tebow broke for jersey sales was none other than that of the New York Jets current starting quarterback, Mark Sanchez.

Ah, another pretty face that hasn’t quite panned out at his position but has in the franchise’s pocketbook.

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