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.

  • I Am The Law – FMNF wrote:

    Pinotaur wrote:
    Make your own bat contest…..people make their own bats and bring them to the game. Before the game begins you get the BEAR girls or whoever to judge them on length, girth, integrity etc (you can play up that innuendo as much as possible). Three are selected, then those three get a chance to win something by seeing, on the field, how far they can hit a ball/puck, during the 7th inning stretch with their “crazy” bat.
    Or you could just hold a raffle and see how far three selectees can hit a ball with a hockey stick. Prizes ensue.
    call it “show us your wood”

    Stupid no edit button…

    Anyways, I love this idea. Makes me think of Homer Simpson's Wonderbat.

  • knobert

    How about Horclops night…… where any fans wearing an eye patch enter a draw for get breakaway chance on one of the goalies or Pete Peeters using one eye. Winner gets to play first line centre for the first shift of the third period.

  • Failed Edmonton Franchise night

    Personally I think minor, minor, minor league baseball games held during workdays in Edmonton has little chance of long term prosperity.

    To this effect I would encourage all of the folks who have been tricked/given/bought any other failed/defunct Edmonton sports franchise memorabilia to bring it to the game.

    Basketball: Skyhawks
    Baseball: Trappers, Cracker Cats
    Soccer: Drillers
    Hockey: Edmonton Ice

    I personally know a guy who still has a hilarious Skyhawks jersey and has been known to wear it from time to time.

    FMNF

  • Jorge

    A mustache night where all people must have fake/real/disgusting mustaches. Bonus points for Iconic people such as Hitler, Einstien, Hulk Hogan, or A village people

  • I Am The Law – FMNF wrote:

    Also, in Japan, the Valentine’s Day thing is backwards. On Valentine’s Day, girls give guys chocolate, and on March 14, guys return the favour with usually a bigger, better gift. More useless knowledge for the masses!

    Are you serious about this? Let me know.

  • Don Murdochs Hair

    Are we talking about minor league baseball on a hockey website?

    If its an Oilers promotion your looking for, how about this:

    A dunk tank full of 10 w 30 and MacT on the seat. Fans pay 20$ a ball and we use the proceeds to bribe a good head coach into giving us some tips?

    Just a thought

  • This is a simple promotion and it will go like this. Since they are now called the Oil Cats the best way to get asses in the seats will go as such. Get a whole pride of the diesel ultra lounge faithful liquored up, dressed in kitty suits, and have them wrestle in oil as Pour Some Sugar on Me by Def Leppard blares over the PA.

    Fans will scream in adoration and cheer on their favorite kitten as they scream "Scratch, lick and claw that pussy!" Children will shed tears of joy, local patrons will rise up in triumph and the grand stands of Telus field will be filled once again.

  • Ron

    This is for when the Victoria Seals come to town, you could give away to the first 500 or 1000 depending on the cost of course, a nurf or stuff toy like bat. It could also say on it something like "official Oil Cats Seal Club". Ya, cheesey but effective. Maybe it's been done, I don't know?

  • Rick

    MarcAndre Pooalot wrote:

    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.

    This is kinda funny but when I first read A-Roid I thought free Preparation H for the first 1000 (or whatever) fans and anyone that shows up with their own hemorroid cushion for the stands gets in at 1/2 price.

  • James Gunner

    "Prostate Exam Night" A free ticket and a bottle of KY Jelly to anyone willing to get a full rectal exam at some point during the game. Put up live video of the taunt facial expressions made during the ungodly procedures on the big screen between innings/periods.

    Play some good ass shaking music the entire night. "There's a bad moon on the rise", and so forth.

    It's educational, healthy and sporting all wrapped up in a single night.

  • nutsandgum

    @ MarcAndre Pooalot:

    Damn, a Tribute to Owner night (with everyone dressing as Batman) was my idea too!!

    But then I thought if it was a *real* tribute to the owner night, no one would show up, since the guy's invisible in this town anyways, and then so should the stands be.

  • @ Jason Gregor:
    Yes, dead serious. Valentine's Day – Feb. 14, White Day – Mar. 14.

    Kinda dropped the ball on V-Day this year, so I'm telling her I'm getting her a small V-Day gift, but the real deal will come on White Day.

    Sadly, I've never heard of steak and BJ Day 'till HoGo mentioned it. Seems like I've been missing out.

  • 17

    Female reader here.The only thing my guy and I are doing tomorrow is watching the game and hanging around, we both think Valentines day is LAME. I've already told him not to get anything, and I'm not expecting anything.

    As for March 14th, well, that's my mom's birthday, which will likely trump anything else hahahahahaha.

  • Harlie Chuddy

    In honor of some of the greatest plugs that have ever played the game, I present to you "the Plug Toss!"

    Object – to get the plug across the goal line
    How: push, throw, or by any means of convenience get the plug into the net
    Plugs: Rob Brown (the red hairplug team) & Kelly Buchberger (the salt and pepper hairplug team)

  • V-Day? More like D-Day

    Well guys here's a bit of Valentine's advice from a woman's perspective. DON'T EVER hire a Barbershop Quartet and have them serenade the "woman of your dreams" at the office with the song "O, how I love thee! How I dote on thee!" by Shakespeare. I just had this happen to me today . . . and it was absolutely awful!!! And to top it all off, they gave me a rose, a card, and wanted to take my picture, I was so horrified that I scurried back into my office before they could snap a shot!

  • MarcAndre Pooalot

    nutsandgum wrote:

    @ MarcAndre Pooalot:
    Damn, a Tribute to Owner night (with everyone dressing as Batman) was my idea too!!
    But then I thought if it was a *real* tribute to the owner night, no one would show up, since the guy’s invisible in this town anyways, and then so should the stands be.

    Great minds think alike…

    Nuts and gum? What a GREAT invention!

  • MarcAndre Pooalot

    V-Day? More like D-Day wrote:

    Well guys here’s a bit of Valentine’s advice from a woman’s perspective. DON’T EVER hire a Barbershop Quartet and have them serenade the “woman of your dreams” at the office with the song “O, how I love thee! How I dote on thee!” by Shakespeare. I just had this happen to me today . . . and it was absolutely awful!!! And to top it all off, they gave me a rose, a card, and wanted to take my picture, I was so horrified that I scurried back into my office before they could snap a shot!

    Also a great idea *scribbling down furiously* Did they give you a business card or anything?

  • Mrs. Cogliano

    James Gunner wrote:

    “Prostate Exam Night” A free ticket and a bottle of KY Jelly to anyone willing to get a full rectal exam at some point during the game. Put up live video of the taunt facial expressions made during the ungodly procedures on the big screen between innings/periods.
    Play some good ass shaking music the entire night. “There’s a bad moon on the rise”, and so forth.
    It’s educational, healthy and sporting all wrapped up in a single night.

    That was actually similar to my idea, which was to promote Health and Awareness for "Cancer down there"….some proceeds could be donated to "the underwear affair" (A charity event being held in June), and everyone would be encouraged to show up in their underwear. Everyone who had a doctors note proving they had been for a check up in the last 2 months or so would get a discount, and if everyone shows up in their underwear, there has to be a world record in there somewhere!

    Plus, if you couple it with the KY give away, its a win win…because who doesn't love free KY? Maybe it would spawn some wrestling matches…

    p.s. as a single female, hoodlum, did it ever occur to you that our plan is to find some idiot of a man who is going to buy our drinks for us all night, because he thinks we're "lonely", and we can go home knowing that we don't have to sleep with him because he'll be "too drunk" (read: unable) anyways, and in the morning we can just slip away with another hilarious story to tell our girlfriends?

  • RH

    If people are really set on the KY thing, since its a baseball game, it could be a

    "don't catch something you can't throw back" night, and condoms and KY could be given out at the door!

    The teenagers who are still scared to go and buy condoms would flood the stands!

  • Colin

    How about a "Bean Blaster"?(I suck at names).

    Fans bring food for the food bank to the game, the 3 fans that bring the most food get to do a skill competition for a pair of season tickets/ Jerseys etc. Fielding, batting and pitching(speed/accuracy) components would be included.

    The twist?: It's done with cans of beans while in full catcher gear(for safety issues).

    I think it would be fun and the food bank could use a summer campaign, there's lots of awareness around x-mas not so much the rest of the year.