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Half Court Shot Promotion: A Sports Marketing Opportunity at its Finest

And now Ladies and Gentlemen your attention PLEASE!

Sports Networker, yeah who would name their kid that, has the opportunity to win $25,000.00 if he can make this one time shot from half court.  Put your hands together and cheer him on! Sports Networker shoots, it’s up, it’s close, oh boy just off to the right!  Thanks for competing and now let’s get ready for the 3rd quarter!

rhett-brown-half-court-shotThe Half Court Shot Contest and the Memories it Can Conjure Up

Who remembers when this Chicago Bulls fan was chosen back in the 1990’s simply because the employee of the Bulls loved his cool gold shoes!  I still remember that shot to this day (sorry I couldn’t find it anywhere on youtube, if you have a clip leave it on the comments below.)

The half court shot promotion is about as good as it can get for sports marketing.

  • You have the opportunity to do an engaging contest that creates value for your fans. (Always needed.)
  • You have the opportunity to build your database in a non spammy way by registering people.  (Always a plus.) It gives the fans something to get excited about other than the game in their in arena experience. (Absolutely a necessity!)
  • Finally you have the chance to make someone a LIFE LONG fan of your sports marketing brand.  To become truly a lunatic for life about what your team is and represents.  If they make that shot and win your cash prize, your offer, etc you have just added someone who will spread your ideas for years to come whenever possible.

LeBronawesome_display_imageThe Opportunity, the Outcome, and the Strike

The opportunity happens all of the time and recently there have been some great visual experiences of these contests.Look at the sheer happiness on Lebron’s face after he tacked the Miami Heat fan who made one of these shots.  If you haven’t seen the clip of it, it’s a true gem and I highly recommend you check it out HERE! That man is $75,000.00 richer, has the memory of a lifetime of being tackled and hugged by Lebron, and certainly a huge advocate of everything the Miami Heat will do for years to come unless they start spamming him! Or here’s another dandy of a OKC fan recently winning $20,000.00 for nailing his shot!  He buries it HERE!

ESPN has done it forever on their NCAA College Basketball Gameday show on Saturday mornings with a student given the chance to win tuition from State Farm.  It’s a great association and sponsorship by State Farm, I didn’t have to look that up, because I remembered right away who the sponsor of it is. It’s truly a great old school promotion that can work in a new school way.

The opportunity is the half court shot. The outcome is never bad, if they miss it they appreciate the opportunity.  If they make it you create someone who has just had the experience and outcome of a lifetime on YOU!  (And that beats any type of advertising or social media interaction hands down.) But what about the STRIKE? And what I mean by that is, what if you have the idea but you seriously whiff on the promotion?

2013-01-19-halfcourt-shot-4_3_r536_c534GUY HITS HALF COURT SHOT, WINS A TV????  (WHAT?!?!)

It’s true.  Also beyond that you can register for a half court shot contest to win a heating and cooling system. Hmmm… it’s just that these are not the $75 and $50k prizes fans have been getting. Strange.  There are now numerous promotions and prizes rewarding their fans for $500.00 prizes or less if they hit the half court shot. Now before you jump on me, about how $500.00 or a new TV is still a great prize, let me explain how some of these contests work.

The team or whoever the sponsor is does not make a full payment of the winning prize.  An insurance company does. We call it in the radio “getting an insurance policy” for a promotion. If you are only offering a prize of a TV for a half court shot then you are simply putting up no more than $500.00 or so for the entire season!  If you do it for one game then you are looking at a cost as low as $25-50.00 for the contest depending on how many are entered and will attempt it.  If they make it you are only out the money of the insurance policy.

My point is the half court shot promotion is a golden opportunity to do great sports marketing and by doing it “cheap” or “second grade” some of these teams, companies, and contests are missing the real opportunity:

To give a fan a once in a lifetime prize from a once in a lifetime opportunity.

  • That Miami Heat fan who had LBJ fall in his lap won’t soon forget that experience or the $75k.
  • The fan who wins a new AC unit or an HD TV will forget within weeks where that came from.

If you really want to create a measurable, valuable, engaging, and unique experience I just feel that it is worth the extra $1-2k that is necessary to pay for an insurance policy that guarantees an unbelievable prize. Sports Marketing Opportunities are all around us everyday. Some good and some are not so good, pay attention to what is going on out there and think about next time you see one if it is truly something you are interested or excited about.  If it’s not then the opportunity is being missed and they are striking out instead of hitting a marketing home run. Finally, if you make the shot but you break the rules do you still get your money??  Apparently so if you have a savvy social media plan to gather support for you making it.  Check out this halftime shot gone viral HERE!  Thanks for reading everyone!  Ever attempted one or seen someone make one??

Leave your comments below about your experience!  You can email me at as well or tweet us at @SportsNetworker and have a great day out there!

If you’d like to pick up a brand new paperback copy of Mike’s debut book on sales, sports marketing, hot dogs, and personal branding then you can do so right HERE and if you enter Code: XDZ95CNU.  

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6 Responses to Half Court Shot Promotion: A Sports Marketing Opportunity at its Finest

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