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East-West Shrine Game Wrap Up

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Saturday, January 21, 2017, marked the 92nd annual East-West Shrine Game and Pinstripe’s sixth year managing the advertising, social media, public relations, media credentials, pre-game and much more. While preparation for the game takes a couple months, the week leading up to it is an action packed time for us, and we love every moment of it!

 

Kicking off the week with a visit to the Shriners Hospitals for Children – Tampa with four busloads of all-star football players, coaches, team managers and other staff is incredible. We couldn’t think of a better way to remind ourselves and these young rising star football players what the Shrine Game means.

Monday am – We start the day by visiting the Game Office at the Tradewinds Hotel on St. Pete Beach. We check in with the staff there, pick up the most up to date rosters and practice schedules, and just say hi to all of our wonderful colleagues that make the Shrine Game possible.

Monday lunch – We collect and organize all of our media interview requests for the players and coaches. These have been arriving via text, phone call, email – any method the press can connect with us, they do! Our goal is to make sure the press gets what they want, but also that the players get exposure for the week – they’ve worked hard to get here and deserve some recognition for that.

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Monday afternoon – Head over to Shorecrest Preparatory School football stadium, where the East Team practices. We set up our media table, where we distribute rosters, schedules, and check-in writers, photographers, and videographers who are approved for credentials to access the practice field and press box at the game. We even hand out mints and sunscreen, because we’re just thoughtful like that. You’d be surprised at how many people take advantage of both. We take photos and video of practice and post to all social accounts. After practice we pull players aside for in-person interviews with media, and give them instructions for radio and interview call-ins they will need to do in the evening. Later in the afternoon, we head over to St. Pete High football stadium for West Team practice, where we do the same thing that we did with the East Team.

Monday night – We all meet to go over media requests, recap the last two days, look at photos/video, and make sure we’re on track for the rest of the week. The whole team is always checking in with each other to make sure all bases are covered and to see if anyone needs help with anything.

Tuesday – Thursday – These days are much like Monday – we attend practices, connect with media, and make sure that social is alive with photos, updates, and fun, interactive posts to keep our fans engaged and make sure they can follow what is going on. Some of the players’ families are not able to attend the game, so our posts are their way of seeing what is going on during the week.

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Thursday, Friday, Saturday mornings – Prior to the week, we booked morning shows for the executive director of the game and the Shriners Hospitals patient ambassadors, so we attend these morning shows for support and guidance, as well as to connect with the patient ambassadors. This is our first time meeting them and it is always a pleasure!

Friday evening – We attend the banquet! The Shriners, players, coaches, and the Shrine Game team come together at Tropicana Field for a night filled with food, awards, and celebration. The executive director of the game, Harold Richardson, presents the Pat Tillman Award. Pat Tillman was a professional football player who walked away from the game after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 to join the U.S. Army and fight for our country. After just three years in the NFL, Tillman turned down a multi-million dollar contract offer from the Cardinals to enlist in the U.S. Army. He was killed during a mission in Afghanistan in 2004. This year the award, which recognizes the player who best exemplifies character, intelligence, sportsmanship and service, went to Air Force safety, Weston Steelhammer.

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Saturday – GAME DAY! Although kickoff is at 1pm, the Pinstripe team is at The Trop at 10am to set up the press box, go through the production schedule with the Rays video team, and get ready to provide last-minute media credentials at will call. We manage the pre-game pageantry, in-game video and graphics, half-time show, sideline photography, press statistics, MVP voting, the final game press releases, and more! It feels like we fit a month of work into a single day that lasts well into the night. It is a tremendous sense of satisfaction as we look out over the dark, empty Tropicana Field where just a few hours before, a hundred young football stars burst onto the field to play for their futures, for their families, for many of their own reasons, but most of all, for the millions of Shriners Hospitals for Children patients who benefit from the game.

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Pinstripe completes another successful East-West Shrine Game

Tampa Bay sports marketing agency
Tampa Bay hosted the 91st East-West Shrine Game on January 23rd and welcomed more than 100 of college football’s best players on their first stop on the Path to the Draft. A week-long job interview, the players showcase their talents before scouts from every NFL team and national sports media. The Pinstripe Marketing team supports the game with public relations, credentialing media, advertising and media buying, social media management, sideline photography, and in-game communications.

The fifth year in Tampa Bay was another great success. A record 23,106 fans in attendance, NFL Network rankings up 67% over 2015, and tremendous support from the media. We especially appreciate our partners at the local television, radio and newspapers who have embraced the game and the important cause it supports. While the West won the game, it is always the children of Shriners Hospitals for Children who win.

Here are just a few of the stories from game week:

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Marketing as a New Year’s Resolution

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Is one of your New Year’s resolutions to grow your business? To do more marketing? To be more strategic? To work smarter, not harder? You’re not alone! Each year, our phones start ringing on January 2nd with clients ready to start off strong.

If you need support to refresh your brand, launch that new web site, generate new content, shoot new videos, design new marketing collateral, build relationships with the media, or just to keep you on track – we’re here for you. Let’s set up a meeting and discuss your resolutions!

Be More Awesome in 2016!

Cushman & Wakefield’s Oliver Hedge Interviewed by New York Times

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Oliver Hedge, a director in the Valuation and Advisory Group at Cushman & Wakefield, works with golf course and country club investors and developers. He has seen the industry ride the rollercoaster and has an insiders perspective on what is working in today’s climate.

And business is good.

Oliver talked with New York Times reporter Nick Madigan about the state of both public and private clubs and the surprisingly slim margins owners eek out to compete.

Fewer Golfers, but Some Lush Courses are Coming Back

The story made the front page of the November 25th New York Times business section – great exposure for our client!

Based on the Times success, we pitched the story to the The Real Deal, which featured Oliver in their story, Falling Popularity of Golf Forces a Change of Course.

 

Need help with media relations? Let’s chat!

Social Media: What’s Your Strategy?

Tampa Bay social media managementSocial media is a key component of effective branding strategy. More than just “social,” these communications must be backed by a sound marketing plan.

As with every marketing plan, you must determine what you want to accomplish via social platforms and who exactly you’re trying to reach. It’s not just about “Likes.” In fact, your target audience may not even be on Facebook.

You have to know where your customers and prospects are: Twitter? LinkedIn? Reddit? A combination? Your primary goals, after all, are lead generation and best positioning.

Once you’ve identified the best platforms for your message, you’re tasked to engage your audience regularly and consistently. One way to achieve this by establishing yourself as a thought leader. By doing so, you satisfy readers’ needs for insights to overcome their toughest challenges.

Shape these conversations through real-world, relatable experiences. How has your business helped others tackle problems? How have your customers benefited from your product, service or solution? How can you provide what no one else can?

This will go a long way toward generating potential leads and developing existing relationships. It’s a long-term commitment that’s vital to your overall marketing strategy.

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