Basketball in Indiana is a big deal. That might be the understatement of the century. It’s a HUGE deal. Needless to say, with the sports marketing expertise we have at BBIM, we jumped at the opportunity to partner with Converse and John Deere to help celebrate Indiana basketball and make that emotional connection between these brands steeped in tradition themselves.
When you’re dealing with something as beloved and important as Indiana basketball, on the 100 year anniversary no less, you go big or you go home. We went big, and we certainly didn’t go home…not for a while that is. In order to truly celebrate something so vast and community-specific, we came to the conclusion that we needed to BE there. We needed to celebrate Indiana basketball in Muncie and French Lick and Indianapolis. It matters to people because of that tradition, and that’s exactly what we wanted to celebrate.
BBIM created a multi-tiered event, which traveled the state of Indiana in the 100 days leading up to the Indiana state high school boy’s 100th basketball championship. Our central theme throughout the process was “Down Main Street,” tying the celebration back into those local communities.
We scheduled, organized, and staffed a 100-day statewide memorabilia tour, where thousands of fans go to relive memories and remember the truly amazing moments that define Indiana basketball (beyond just Hoosiers, although, yes, we had plenty of Hoosiers memorabilia). We also hosted the Parade of Champions through Indianapolis, providing in on-site visibility for Converse and John Deere at the parade and the championship game. Finally, we developed a website for the 100 Years of Indiana Basketball, which hosted live broadcasts of the Parade of Champions and reception.
Oh, and someone named Oscar Robertson was a key figure at the parade.
Sometimes, a client/marketer relationship seems too good to be true. Converse and John Deere wanted to connect to the past and look to the future, which, in conjunction with the 100 Years of Indiana Basketball, we were designed to deliver on. We successfully targeted a youthful audience for Converse, while linking them to their rich history and the history of Indiana basketball. The event was part of a rebirth for Converse, who reconnected with a youthful audience and stood out in a crowded marketplace.
Converse saw increased traffic to retail outlets across the state thanks to this effort and the statewide media attention the events garnered. And, of course, we got to meet Oscar Robertson.