CONTEST: Zany baseball promotions

amarketersdream

I have always marveled at minor league baseball and the unique, zany, outlandish and absolute genius game promotions they dream up. And I want you guys to dream up some zany promotions as well, but we’ll get to that further down the post.

Some of my favourite ridiculous promotions include (note, those promotions in blockquotes are taken from this Sports Illustrated article):

Silent night

The Charleston Riverdogs went a record against the Capital City Bombers when they tried to play the quietest game ever. For the first five innings, there was no talking. Fans wore duct tape over their mouths and held placards that read “YEAH!,” “BOO!” and “HEY BEER MAN!” Also, ushers were replaced by librarians and golf marshals held up “Quiet Please” signs.

I’m not sure they would allow this at Rexall since they often confiscate placards at the door. I still can’t believe how anal they were when the Human Rake returned for the first time as a member of the Ducks. I loved the girls who dressed up pregnant with “Are you my Daddy” on them.

Awful night

Attempting to produce the worst atmosphere ever at a baseball game, the Altoona Curve had music by William Shatner and Milli Vanilli, a gate giveaway of a 12-inch square of bubble wrap, pregame autograph sessions with non-celebrities, batting averages listed as “failed averages” (a .300 hitter had a .700 average) and a special presentation to the 1962 Mets — baseball’s worst team ever.

Anytime you can incorporate one of the biggest musical frauds in history it’s a good idea. Can you imagine how excited Bingofuel would be if they asked him to sign autographs?

Ted Williams popsicle night

When Williams’ body was cryogenically frozen, the Bisbee-Douglas Copper Kings gave popsicles to the first 500 fans.

Not that unique, but how cool would it have been if they made the popsicles in a likeness of Williams!

Pre-planned Funeral Night

The Hagerstown Suns gave away a full pre-paid funeral valued at $6,500 to one (un)lucky fan. The package included embalming, a casket and funeral home use, as well as a death certificate. Two-thousand fans entered the contest.

This is still one of my favs. I had the PR guy from Hagerstown on my show to talk about it. The funniest part was that it was non-transferable. They didn’t want young kids giving it to their grandparents. A direct quote from the PR guy. Could you imagine your grandma’s face when she unwraps her Xmas present and it is a certificate for her pre-planned funeral. Nothing says love like that.

Salute To Indoor Plumbing Night

The West Virginia Power planned to close all the rest rooms and make everyone use portable toilets, when the Augusta Greenjackets came to town, but there were health code concerns. But they still made the best of it. With the team’s employees dressed in overalls, they mashed up brownes and made them look like “poo,” and then they had a “Poo Toss.”

Honestly who thinks of this? And how many fans want to partake in a Poo Toss? I’m guessing the editor of the Charleston Gazette was praying the home team lost just for the headline possibilities…Power Lay A Log…or…What A Shitty Game… feel free to come up with your own.

Well it isn’t just baseball that can come up with unique promotions. The Milwaukee Admirals of the AHL have come up with a pretty good one of their own. “DON’T BE LIKE MIKE NIGHT” in honour of bong lover Micheal Phelps.

Here is the release from the Admirals, or you can check out their website:

All fans who are graduates of a DARE program (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) can get into the game for just $2 by bringing their DARE graduation certificate to the Admirals’ office or the Bradley Center box office. In addition, anyone with the name Michael, Phelps, Mary Jane, Cheech, Chong, Weed (Wied) or anyone who has won an Olympic Gold Medal can also get their ticket for only $2.

“I, along with Nancy Reagan, want to encourage people to not do drugs,” said Admirals President Jon Greenberg. “As an organization the Milwaukee Admirals don’t condone or encourage the use of illegal drugs, including, but not limited to marijuana, or anabolic steroids for that matter.”

The Ads will also be giving away a weed wacker, that will be signed by the team and if the Admirals score with 4:20 left on the clock in any period one lucky fan will win a season ticket for the 2009-10 season. The number 420 is often known as the police code for illegal drug use.

Plus, to ensure that no one ends up in the same predicament as Michael Phelps, the team will provide a document shredder at the DigiCopy Information Table outside section 225 so fans can bring any embarrassing or incriminating photos to be destroyed.

Does anyone know someone named Cheech or Chong, because if you do their parents must have loved the hippie whiskey. I can just picture Wanye and BMJS hovering outside section 225 hoping to get a glimpse of some incriminating photos, or stealing them and sprinting out of the building like they had just pulled off the greatest coup in history. Of course, they would get tripped up by an usher in section 227 and then having to spend the night having a “Poo Toss/Plug” of their own at the crowbar hotel.

In honour of great promotions, whoever comes up with a funny, and possible promotion that the Oil Cats could do this summer, will get a pair of tickets to next Saturday’s Oiler/Flames game, courtesy of yours truly. This is my Valentines gift to the Nation.

The winner will be decided by the promotion girls from the BEAR. And if it’s that good I will forward to the Oilers PR staff, with a guarantee that if they use it, the winner will be showered with gifts for that game.

V-Day? More like D-Day

Speaking of Valentines Day, is there a more stressful holiday for guys? This day is all about the lady in your life. As guys, if our women cooks a nice meal wearing a teddy, lets us watch sports all night and then has a spirited roll in the sheets we are pumped.

Meanwhile most women expect us to be some Casanova for a day. It’s great getting your pocket picked at the flower and chocolate counter, while sweating bullets wondering if lillies, roses or tulips are her favourite. She’s told us many times, but as usual we weren’t paying attention.

For any of you newbies who are experiencing your first Valentines with a new women, don’t fall for their, “You don’t have to get me anything,” or “Don’t go overboard.” Those are warning shots.

Be prepared to do your best Slick Rick or Lance Romance impression. Women don’t want to hear from their friends about how sweet their boyfriend/husband was while you thought getting her a teddy bear from 7-Eleven while you cashed in your sports select ticket was the good enough.

While most of us don’t want to cave to the pressure, we ultimately do because the consequences are too much. Getting cut off is not an option, and neither is spending the next month trying to make up for it. I suggest getting her tipsy while watching the Oilers/Kings game and hope it goes well from there.

Good luck, fellow gents.

And to Amber and the other female readers, if there are any: enjoy your day, because March 14th is when you better return the favour.

  • A tribute to the new owner… Batman night. Dress up like your favorite super hero, special batman type uniforms for the team. Special mascot for the game, dark beer, free utility belts…

  • You guys are missing the boat, Gregor clearly said it was a promotion for the "Oil Cats". I can see the confusion though, NHL team or minor minor league baseball team.

    But the armchair coach thing would work for whoever the coach is of the baseball team. ON could even start up a F(last initial here)NF campaign in the months leading up just to create some emotion.

    Actually that is my idea – a "F(blank)NF" night where fans bring in posters to exhorting anyone and everyone to be fired. Most creative posters win the opportunity to fire someone.

  • The Towel Boy wrote:

    How about “Worst Knit Sweater” night. You know…the kind circa 1983 that you and your misses would wear to the Sears portrait studio for Christmas pictures.
    The best part would be is if it’s a hot summer night beer sales would be through the roof.

    A friend of mine just hosted a party like this a few weeks ago! I wasn't able to make it but gawd were the pics ever horrible!!!

  • My personal favorite would be a jersey trade in night. I have in my possession a 'M COMRIE' (from the days of Paul), an away Torres & a home Stoll sweater.

    How many people have jersey's like that. They are like $200 & I have seen a guy in Carolina game 7 of the cup finals with an old 'Marchant' with the name covered up in hockey tape with 'Winchester' written on it instead.

    Plus everyone has the old sweater – good way to get them into the 'edge' sweater…

    JMHO

  • Here's an idea for a contest, albeit a bit lame:

    Historic ticket stub night – if you bring in a ticket stubs from a previous season for the exact same day as this year's game day, you get a free Oilers jersey.

  • Hoodlum wrote:

    I am launching a V-day protest. Although valentines day is probably the easiest day of the year to pick up random, lonely, drunk, bitter, LONELY, vindictive and did I say lonely, girls……, I refuse to fall into the “loving” spirit. So in the spirit od protest, I WILL go to the bar and pick up one of these fine such specimens from the opposite sex and NOT sleep with them until Sunday. It’s sort of like a hunger strike, in thre fact that neither one of us will be eating anything at the time, but looking at the big picture here, 1. Valentines day wil be over, and secondly breakfast will be great. And you find out if she still loves you in the morning.

    No sleep with them till the morning?? Good luck after the booze wears off..jk jk

  • Sloppy Seconds Night!

    Free admission for any ladies dressed like one of Sean Avery's ex-girlfriends!
    Serve sloppy joes at the concession booth!
    Set up raw oyster bars all over the ball park!
    Slip and slide in the outfield grass!

    First pitch of the game thrown by Diane Phaneuf!

  • This is a baseball game right?

    A-Roid night. A tribute to one of the greatest baseball players of all time. Mr. A-Rod. Free Steroids, boths set up about not sharing needles, "Juice" stands…etc.

  • How about "Worst Knit Sweater" night. You know…the kind circa 1983 that you and your misses would wear to the Sears portrait studio for Christmas pictures.

    The best part would be is if it's a hot summer night beer sales would be through the roof.

  • Elvis Night!!!!! I'm sure it has been done before but man wouldn't that be cool, thousands of elvis's in a myriad of white jumpsuits, leather and whiteshirt/jeans . Not to mention the loads of side burns and his 'vegas' sunglasses.

    Have all the music that night from him vast repetoire too.

    Each time the Oilers score we could play "I feel so bad"…or "All shook up" and if we win, "Promised Land" and if we lose, "Don't Cry Daddy" or "Heartbeak Hotel".

    For a penalty the song "Jail house rock" (obviously) and if there is fight we could play "Viva las vegas" (in tribute to all the fights staged in las vegas). The possiblities are endless.

  • I've already sent in my Official entry, but how about an "Armchair Coach for the Night Promotion"? People could send in a rant saying how bad of a coach Mac T is, and whoever writes the best one can coach the team for a night to demostrate to everyone how brilliant they are and how easy it is to coach a professional hockey team. All the Mac T haters could prove to everyone how terrible Mac T is by coaching the team to victory. The Oilers would obviously win 812-0, and the winner would instantly become an Oiler legend….Or they would realize how tough of a job it is, crap their pants and run off the bench trembling and crying like a Baby. Either way, it would be great entertainment.

  • Whoa, halfway through that post I forgot it was a Gregor post and I thought Wanye was just making up wacky promotions.

    Minor League Baseball: Ingenuity At It's Finest.

    I think for Valentines day I'm going to get my lady the same thing (edited with love by WG.) A one day reprieve from solid backhands to the face.

  • I am launching a V-day protest. Although valentines day is probably the easiest day of the year to pick up random, lonely, drunk, bitter, LONELY, vindictive and did I say lonely, girls……, I refuse to fall into the "loving" spirit. So in the spirit od protest, I WILL go to the bar and pick up one of these fine such specimens from the opposite sex and NOT sleep with them until Sunday. It's sort of like a hunger strike, in thre fact that neither one of us will be eating anything at the time, but looking at the big picture here, 1. Valentines day wil be over, and secondly breakfast will be great. And you find out if she still loves you in the morning.

  • @ alphah:

    Good point. Post your entries in the comments, and we'll see if everyone can be inspired by hilarious and awful ideas.

    PS You would call free tickets to the Battle of Alberta weird. IMMEDIATE DISQUALIFICATION

  • In the spirit of Valentine's Day this contest is open to both Flames and Oilers fans. We heartily suggest you come up with some entries – Gregor's seats are sweet.

    Ain't love grand?

    Go Oilers

    *runs away into the night*