Tampa Bay Lightning: Transforming a Brand… Event Recap

One hundred AMA Tampa Bay members and guests gathered for a lunch event at Amalie Arena on January 13.  We sat in the beautiful club seating section where we could see and hear  players from the Pittsburgh Penguins practicing on the ice for their series against the Lightning- what a treat! The real show, however, was a presentation by Eric Blankenship, VP of Marketing for the Tampa Bay Lightning.  He shared how this powerful organization continues to build a strong brand in our community by creating loyal fans of all ages.  Eric acknowledged that making it to the Stanley Cup last season helps, too!

From a marketer’s perspective, it was interesting to hear Eric talk about using traditional media on a consistent basis to maintain their brand.  And, when combined with the power of social media, they have enjoyed very effective campaigns.  You may remember seeing a pair of billboards on either side of I-275 last season.  The two boards created the dynamic illusion of player, Valtteri Filppula, shooting the puck across the highway and ripping the material off another billboard.  This generated social media buzz and great news media attention!

From a fan’s perspective, Eric gave insight to owner Jeff Vinik’s leadership and the overarching goal to build the ultimate fan experience.  If you have been to a Lightning game, you know the powerful energy in the arena and throughout the game!  It’s all for the fans — renovations inside the arena, a state-of-the-art scoreboard, and putting amazing hockey talent on the ice.  It’s proving to be a successful plan because all tickets are sold out for the rest of the season!

Click here to see a slideshow from this event.  AMA Tampa Bay plans to schedule informative events like this one throughout 2016. The next event is the 2nd Annual Big Game Ad Watching Party at Steinbrenner Field on Thursday, February 4th. This will be a fun and educational luncheon about the Super Bowl ad experience.  Go here for more information.

By: Alison Clinton

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Alison joined the AMA Tampa Bay volunteer team this year as a Digital Content Curator and Blog Writer.  She is also Director of Marketing at Bright House Networks in St. Petersburg, FL.   LinkedIn