AMP Energy Drink & WEC unveil Hometown Takedown promotion
AMP Energy Drink and the WEC have unveiled a new promotion called “Hometown Takedown” which allows fans to jump online and vote for the city of their choice to host a future WEC event. The contest will run from May 28th until July 31st and the winning city will be announced sometime around August 18th.
Those looking to participate in the contest will be required to register with the Hometown Takedown website to create a voting account that allows them to cast 10 votes per day for one of 30 different cities to host a future WEC event. AMP and the WEC have also partnered with national convenience store chains Hess and Maverik to create a Hometown Takedown Sweepstakes where fans can visit stores and purchase specialized AMP products for a chance to win a trip to the Hometown Takedown WEC event.
There’s a saying in sponsorship: everything begins and ends with objectives.
When AMP signed on with the WEC in January it was probably looking to achieve three major objectives – increase awareness, enhance brand image, and increase sales – and they’ve done a decent job of that thus far. The partnership has been pretty visible at WEC events and AMP has even been sponsoring three WEC fighters (including Urijah Faber) whom they’ve done some further promotion around.
However, this new contest takes activation, and the pursuit of the above objectives, to a whole, new level:
1. Increase awareness
The AMP brand will receive a significant boost in awareness within the MMA target market because this contest is unique, draws a close association with the WEC, and will leverage nationwide retail partnerships to provide a more visible presence at point of sales locations (the combination of Hess and Maverik stores gives the Hometown Takedown Sweepstakes over 1600 locations across the US).
Top-of-mind awareness is really important, here. The WEC isn’t a super huge property like the NFL, so AMP’s chances of affecting ubiquitous awareness are slim, but when a consumer thinks about the WEC (or MMA) they should also think about AMP. That’s the goal. Not unlike when fans think about the UFC, they may think about Tapout or Harley Davidson. This contest is going to create the type of association with the WEC that’s necessary to generate that top-of-mind awareness in MMA fans.
2. Image enhancement
The strength of the contest is in the level of interaction it creates between the brand and the consumer. Instead of the typical gross impressions-based signage or commercial advertising, this contest gets the consumer actively thinking about the AMP brand while choosing a host city for the future WEC event. The consumer is given a choice and allowed to interact with a sport they care about, which is something that will likely help cultivate a more favorable AMP brand image in the minds of MMA fans.
Moreover, the fact that AMP is partnering with the WEC to present this contest naturally means that a degree of rub-off will occur from the WEC to AMP in terms of favorable brand image – those that like the WEC will most probably like AMP after they’ve participated in this contest.
This also gets back to the earlier point of top-of-mind awareness: when fans think of the WEC and energy drinks, what brand do they think of?
3. Increase sales
The best part about contests is that they usually provide hosts with a great deal of information regarding the target consumers; this information can then be used to craft future marketing material or generate new sales leads. AMP and the WEC will get that information through this contest. Moreover, looking at the property side for a moment, I think it’ll even be valuable for the WEC to see the results of the final vote: much of the information may not come as a surprise, but a good showing by a surprise runner up city might motivate the WEC to consider it for a show in the future.
The sweepstakes should also help to drive foot traffic to partner stores, which will inevitably also drive retail sales.
Hometown Takedown is quite possibly one of the best and most creative pieces of sponsorship activation that I have seen in MMA. I’m really hoping that this becomes sort of a best practice example for the industry that other sponsors and properties can borrow, because this is the level of creativity and effort that it takes to really make a difference and maximize ROO of an MMA sponsorship.
Kudos to the boys and girls at Zuffa, Pepsi, and Genesco Sports for putting this one together.