Tackling “Another Part” on Thursday
"I am so honored and blessed to be given the opportunity to join the McNeese Athletics family. The atmosphere here in Lake Charles is electric and it just draws you in. You can’t help, but want to soak it all up. Marketing and Sports have always been my passion. Put them together and what do you got… DREAM JOB! As the Marketing Assistant, I have an incredible opportunity to learn from some of the best in the business. Louisiana Tech was my home for a while and I used to Bleed Tech Blue, now I Geaux Blue! Tech gave me the foundation I needed to get my career off the ground and for that I will be forever grateful.
Week One – Complete! My first days here at McNeese were amazing. The staff has welcomed me in with open arms and has made this transition smooth. I can already tell that here you are not just some number, you have a name and people care about the person behind the name. Right out of the gates I was given so much more responsibility then I had previously ever been given. The amount of Marketing I am being exposed to is more than I could have asked for. I’m learning new tips and tricks to help me along the way. I have been given a unique opportunity though to not only get to specialize in Marketing, but other fields as well. I am learning all about the Tickets and Game Day Operations side of the ball. Getting acquainted with the ticket software was like looking at a foreign language at first, but I have slowly gotten the hang of it and even sold my first set of season tickets! This job is about always learning and adapting and I cannot wait for this year to get into full swing.
I have been given this unbelievable opportunity to further my career and I intend to take full advantage of it. One of my favorite quotes is, “Don’t limit your Challenges, Challenge your Limits”. I fully expect this year to have many challenges, but I thrive off the pressure and expectations. I hope to grow as a person and in my career in many ways while I am here. When I leave these doors for the last time I hope I can look back with no regrets and no fear of what my future holds!”
Tackling “Part of the New Team” on Thursday
Hooray, it is that time again. The time to celebrate the team members who left McNeese to pursue great opportunities at other schools.
- Bill McDaniel (@WMM_3) - Asst. AD of External Affairs at Texas A&M Corpus Cristi
- David Pillen (@davidpillen) - Director of Creative Services/Video Operations at La Tech
- Alan Savage (@asavagelife87) - Ticket Office Manager at SEMO
And the time to welcome the three new external staff members who joined McNeese to pursue the cajun athletic experience. Just like last year, I will have my new teammates guest blog throughout the year in order to promote professional development, document growth, and allow everyone to get to know each other.
Well y’all, welcome…
- Fritz Anderson (@FritzAnderson1) - Ticketing & Game Ops Assistant
- Ashleigh Steelhammer (@ash_steel16) - Marketing Assistant
- Taylor Mounts (@taylormounts) - Director of Corporate Sponsorships
Today, Fritz Anderson is going to start things off and give us a recap of his first week and some thoughts of his expectations for the upcoming year…
Opportunities vs Distractions
As you continue through your life and if you continue to work hard, opportunities will present themselves. And these opportunities will leave you with decisions. It is during the decision making time that you must “check in” with where you are going or where you want to go. This is a process of looking at your visions and goals for the year. While sometimes it will be hard given the current situations etc, you will realize that some of the opportunities before you, even though they might seem really cool and attractive, might not directly align with what and where you truly want to go next. And while these opportunities put your life on halt for a time period to explore the possibilities, you cannot be afraid to gracefully let the opportunities pass you by.
Because the truth is, it takes more guts to say no/decline than it is to say yes/accept.
While there is this pressure to jump on opportunities because you never know what else will come your way, sometimes it is ok to be selective with what opportunities you decide to jump on. But it is only ok to pass up these opportunities by recognizing that you must work that much harder to make better and more opportunities come your way.
The importance of a vision. So how do you know if something’s an opportunity or a distraction? Here’s a few things to keep in mind…
- Analyze the potential opportunity in light of the goals and vision set for the year
- Every year do a comprehensive annual review process in which you declare exactly what you want to accomplish in the coming year. Along with professional goals which seem to be BIG drivers in everyone’s life, this should also include where you want to live, what personal activities are important to you, etc
- Be clear on your vision
- Know what you are committed to
- Have the courage to say no to things that don’t fit that—even if you are not sure what will take its place
First…Let Me Take a Snapchat
Snapchat can be a value added platform not only for a brand, but also for an individual. It is a way to offer an inside look and tell a unique story. While this platform is limited in so many ways, the product’s success is ultimately dependent on the user(s).
But lets be honest, the Snapchat world is not for all brands. It is hard for some to see this platform as lasting. The engagement part is cool and the exclusive look is attractive, but where is the next step to these disappearing pictures and videos? And is this a crucial part to creating the fan experience?
For individual people, Snapchat is just a different way to connect and communicate with others. While people can definitely have fun with their snaps, they can also use this platform as a way to share ideas and to show off happenings going on during their day.
Lately, mini Snapchat stories has been DMayeaux18’s new “thing.”
Tackling “Sponsors” on Thursday
Let’s just consider this week the week of sponsor topics.
And as we all know, the face to face interactions with sponsors is one of the most important parts to building lasting relationships. It is this time that gives sponsors the feeling that they have your undivided attention. It is the opportunity for sponsors to vent, to praise, and to chat. It is the chance for ideas to be discussed and new plans of action to be taken.
At McNeese, we are in a lucky/unique position. We are partnered with two competing beverage distributors (Beverage Sales -Coors/Miller Lite and Southwest Beverage - Bud Light/Budweiser). And over the years, it has been a constant balance of working with both partners. While there are a few negatives with this situation, the positives come in how this situation forces creativity. Since we do not sell alcohol in Cowboy Stadium, both partners need more value than just signage pieces. This value comes from activation in other areas. And one of the best ways to do this is through cross promoting and co-branding.
For the 2014-15 year and football season, one of our goals for McNeese’s brand to be more visible/consistent in the community. One of the goals for our beverage distributors was for McNeese to provide better partnership ideas and more platforms for activation that would help create better associations. And now as we get closer to seasons getting into full gear, these two goals that were just on paper are now coming to life.
Here are a few things we have going on,
-Display wraps located at all Wal-Marts in the Lake are
-Future spot for the McNeese home football schedules. These will go on every Miller Lite box being sold in the 5 parish area starting August 1st.
-Football tailgate stage signage
Creating, Finding, & Delivering Values
Depending on what school you are at and what sport you are focusing on, there are so many angles that sponsorships can be viewed. By keeping a grounded perspective, we must realize that branding is more than just a slogan or an image. A company’s “brand” is it’s most powerful tool to measuring value. A brand is what defines the story in order to help connect with the targeted consumers. In the sport industry, this branding idea has taken on an even more dominant role as teams, schools, and organizations try to position themselves with sponsors.
Due to turnover and a few other issues, Taylor Mounts, our new Director of Corporate Sponsorships, and myself are still trying to finish up our 2014-15 sponsorships before kickoff for 2014. With this being said, there are so many important points to remember when dealing with sponsors and when trying to create or find values to packages:
- No cookie cutter method. What worked at your previous employment might not work at your current employment
- Sponsorships have more “value” in the case of a package rather than the sum of parts
- Not a matter of selling just “benefits.” A matter of selling marketing a opportunity and a relationship
- Never approach a deal as “you” or “me.” Value is created with “we”
- Linking sales directly to sponsorships is typically challenging. Know your brands reach and do not be afraid to give that a price
- Be realistic with your brand. Do not miss an opportunity because of the greed to over value what you have to offer
- Understand every marketing piece you have available and truly believe in the brand you are trying to sell. Don’t be “that sales guy/gal”
- See each sponsorship opportunity as a long term relationship not a one night stand
- Value comes with organization
Now, I know there many more tips & tricks. What is your advice to creating, finding, and delivering value with sponsors?
How do you prepare?
Do you hesitate or are you relentless in your pursuit?
Tackling “Meetings” on Thursday
How efficient have your last five meetings been?
I am sure we have all been in some of the same meeting situations before. The meeting that goes on and on; the meeting where the handout turns into a doodle pad; the meeting where everyone sits playing with his or her smartphone; the meeting where almost everyone in the room is wondering the same thing: Why am I even here?; or the meeting where you meet to go over another meeting. The list really could go on forever.
When you add the amount of hours up, meetings fill up a good part of everyone’s workday. And according to a survey of U.S. professionals by Salary.com, meetings ranked as the number one office productivity killer.
With this being said, there are many ways to conduct meetings that are effective and efficient. Here’s five guidelines to follow…
1. Attendance: Take time to think about who really needs to be at the meeting. When people feel that what is being discussed is not relevant to them, or that they lack the skills or expertise to be of assistance, they see their attendance at the meeting as a waste of time.
2. Agenda: Create an agenda that lays out everything that will be covered in the meeting and email it to people in advance. This allows people to see you are prepared and gives them an opportunity to prepare. Once in the meeting, put that agenda up on a screen or whiteboard for everyone to see. This creates focus.
3. Ban Technology: This keeps everyone focused and engaged. For those who are truly addicted to technology, this creates even more of an incentive to “get work done.”
4. Purpose. Benefit. Check: This should happen at the start to each meeting. State the purpose for the meeting, the benefit of the meeting, and the “check” to make sure that the purpose and benefit have been met. Example: “The purpose of this meeting is to discuss the ticketing strategy for our 2014 home football games. The benefit will be to develop a plan of attack and distribute responsibilities. How does that sound?”
5. Check Back. Sometimes people walk away from the same meeting with very different views of what went on. To reduce this risk, send an email highlighting key points. List the responsibilities given, tasks delegated, and any assigned deadlines. That way, everyone will be on the same page.