Sports Marketing Blog: Week of 11/6/2017

For most of the 1980s, the NBA said that it had underachieved in its marketing. It was a time where superstars were still dominating professional sports, however, the attendance and fan bases weren’t at the level they should’ve been. In this article, the Philadelphia 76ers were front and center.

It was the 1983-1984 NBA season. Philadelphia was the fourth largest market in the entire league. The 76ers were coming off a championship season and ready to repeat. The team consisted of Julius Erving and the reigning MVP, Moses Malone. With all the positives involved, they still weren’t getting the attention they seemed like they should have. They barely sold 4,000 season tickets and struggled to fill the arena come game-night.

This season, the 76ers have sold over 14,000 season tickets, which is a franchise record and is quadruple their total in 2013. The 76ers also expects to have all 41 home games be sold out. The team’s president of business operations, Chris Heck said, “for the first time ever, there’s a waiting list several-thousand-fans deep”. The main contributor to this increase in attention and revenue is due to a simple marketing slogan, “Trust the Process”. This saying was attached to a team who wasn’t winning, and racking up top 3 overall picks for numerous seasons. Eventually, the players who were picked would be healthy and the 76ers could become what everyone hoped they would. This young team and fan base connected through the slogan and is what drives the city of Philadelphia. With all the hype surrounding the team, their sponsorships increased by 30-40% in the past year and is expected to rise. This article proves that it’s not just the level of team that you have, but it’s also the marketing that needs to be great to increase revenue and exposure of team.