Florida A&M University Athletics
Sports & Entertainment
PR, Strategic Marketing, Fan Engagement
Florida A&M University (FAMU), is 1 of 12 public universities that make up the State University System of Florida and is also the nation’s largest Historically Black Colleges & Universities (HBCU). The university’s sports program is a member of Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) and participates in NCAA Division I-AA.
Faced with a crisis following the hazing death of a member of the university’s world renowned Marching 100 band and the subsequent year-long suspension of the band, University Athletics had to act fast. The popularity of the Marching 100 had long been a major attraction for fans attending FAMU football games, and the suspension of the band could have a negative impact on game attendance, fan engagement, and ultimately, ticket sales. A decline in game attendance could also impact local hotels and restaurants since many fans were overnight visitors from out of town.
We were added to the marketing team to develop an aggressive co-branded local, regional, and national marketing, public relations, grassroots marketing, and alumni engagement campaign in partnership with Visit Tallahassee to create excitement for the Fall 2012 football season, drive ticket sales to the home games, and attract overnight visitors to keep hotel and restaurant economic activity consistent with previous years.
- We executed an aggressive media blitz to widely position and promote the football team as the main attraction of the home games in the absence of the
Marching 100, which resulted in millions in impressions from major broadcast media, including ABC, NBC, CBS, and Fox affiliates; the Tom Joyner Morning Show, and American Urban Radio Network (AURN), as well as national print media including Associated Press, New York Times,
Black Enterprise, Essence Magazine, Miami Herald, and dozens more.
- Marketing campaign resulted in ticket sales consistent with previous years despite the Marching 100
not being involved with the season’s games.
- The Marching 100’s halftime show had been a major draw for fans, and in their absence, we recreated the halftime show experience with a high value
entertainment program that would create significant excitement for the home games and drive ticket sales. Entertainment included pre and post game
performances with old school vs new school DJ battles and half time performances with national artists.
- Integrated marketing campaign included regional radio ad campaign, alumni and fan engagement,
geo-targeted digital media, and social media engagement.