Ideas March 17, 2011 12:09 pm

Just For Fun-

My March Madness bracket:

No high hopes here, folks.

Why? I’m not what you would call a sports basketball fan… unless we’re talking Wake Forest.  And then I think I literally bleed black and gold.  But sadly, Wake Forest didn’t make it to the tournament this year- shoot, Wake only won ONE game this year in conference play.  ONE.

Needless to say, I didn’t watch much basketball this season- it was just too heartbreaking to see my dear Demon Deacs trampled week after week.

So this bracket? Pure emotional picking, folks.  Good friends went to Duke and Syracuse? Ok, let’s have them go far.  North Carolina, arguably Wake Forest’s biggest rival?  Hello, you’re not going far in the tourney. Purdue? I like Perdue chicken. (and yes I realize that has nothing to do with the basketball team)

Hopefully you’re getting the point of how ridiculous my bracket is… it’s just sheer MADNESS that I even filled one out this year.  And even more MADNESS- I’ll probably watch the majority of the games, too.  Why?  Not because I’m suddenly a sports fan, but because I’m personally invested by filling out a bracket- can my teams beat the odds and win?

And yet another mad idea– if I were an advertiser, I’d skip the Super Bowl and spend my dollars on March Madness. Why? 20 days of games– a huge opportunity for any advertiser to reach, and continually reach, a highly engaged, large audience.  Last year, 24 million people watched the final game, 16 million people watched the semifinal game between Duke and WVU, and 14.5 million people watched the other semifinal between Butler and Michigan State (Market Watch).  In just these 3 games, that’s a total of 54.5 million people— yes, still roughly 1/2 of this year’s Superbowl numbers— but once again, that’s just 3 games!  In addition to television viewing, according to Coke, ‘last year’s tournament saw 11.7 million hours of online viewing.’ (Market Watch)

Talk about a huge opportunity for cross-platform advertising! So many viewers watch both online and on TV- online during the day (please, don’t even try to tell me you’re not watching at your office) and on TV at night.  And remember how we’ve talked about how the use of social media is attributed with helping drive live ratings? (If your memory is failing you, just refresh it here)

Ok, but why does this opportunity to reach a huge audience across a sustained period of time (I say sustained because I’m thinking duplication is pretty high across games- you probably don’t just watch the first game or just watch the last game) on a cross-platform level platform matter?  According to Nielsen, ‘online video ads help to reinforce and strengthen the impact of a traditional TV campaign. Including online video advertising in the media mix and synchronizing with TV greatly improves all key brand metrics, especially message recall:’ (Nielsen)

So you’re telling me cross-platform advertising is beneficial for advertising metrics, huh. Starting to see why spending on March Madness may not be so mad?  The tournament schedule naturally lends itself to cross-platform viewing- thus increasing the chances advertisers can increase recall among viewers, given that airing ads on both platforms increases recall.  Add in personal investment from fans and the use of social media– and I think you’ve created an advertisers’ sweet spot: large, engaged audience subject to frequent ad repetition.

Yep, so call me MAD, but I’m spending my money on MARCH MADNESS and not the Superbowl.