Looking at corporate sponsorship, the New York Times asks, "As the Economy Worsens, Is There Money for Play?
From the “Buick” emblazoned on Tiger Woods’s golf bag to the Chevrolet Camaro that Cole Hamels drove home last month for being named the most valuable player of the World Series, it is hard to be a sports fan without stumbling across some type of advertisement for General Motors. The company consistently ranks first among advertisers of televised sporting events, outspending other automakers by more than two to one.
But as G.M. faces a financial crisis that has executives pleading with Congress for a federal bailout, many are wondering how far the company’s troubles will extend into the sports industry, which is already struggling to attract advertisers and sponsors in a weakened economy.
Which segues nicely into a couple of ongoing gripes I dip in to every now and again. And again. The WNBA's stunning mismanagement
of its online presence matched only by Liberty's stunning mismanagement
of their subscriber base. Which should be of particular concern to the League, especially these days, but somehow ain't.
Latest example? I recently wrote
about the fact that many Lib subscribers understood that the team would be evicted for one, if not two, seasons because of renovations to the Garden (the boys would stay, of course.). Given the choice between traveling to Long Island, New Jersey or Radio City Music Hall, many were wondering why on earth they should re-up.
And then, of course, their angst was magnified with the quality season the team produced. Do you commit your bucks even though you can't attend the games? Do you let go your 10 years if season tickets, just as the team is on the rise? And then, holy carp, have you been following the economy?
That's a lot of agita floating around in a subscribers tummy.
So, when renovations are put off, do you think Liberty subscribers are called with the news?
Of course not.
When season ticket re-up forms are sent out, does Blaze's letter say, "Hey, we're staying!"
When subscribers get an oversize postcard -- and therefore mailbox scrunched -- sayin' "Thanks for your support!" do they find any space on the poorly graphic'd card to say "We're not going anywhere?"
When a concerned season subscriber calls to express her concern, and suggests that the Liberty might want to be proactive about informing subscribers that the team ain't on the road all season, does the Lib rep comprehend her concern?
Nope! He counters with, "Of course we'll call people if the don't re-up. We don't just cut them off."
File under: Organization unclear on the concept of customer service. This is the Liberty, not the Knicks or Rangers -- there's not a waiting list to be a subscriber. You still need to actually manage them -- pretend you care if they re-up.
Sheesh. And they wonder why their base is shrinking. *she says as she re-ups*