This past weekend, Motorola seized a rare PR/branding opportunity to drive significant national and regional media coverage, while endearing itself to NFL fans and the city of Cincinnati. The company, in partnership with new Motorola/Motoblur spokesman, Cincinnati Bengals Wide Receiver Chad Ocho Cinco, purchased the remaining 1,600 tickets to last Sunday’s Bengals/Texans game that were necessary to make the game a sellout. Most importantly, this effectively lifted the league-imposed local TV blackout that had been the a topic of public discussion and disappointment amidst the local media and throughout the city the entire week. To take the gesture to another level, Motorola and the Bengals staged a ticket giveaway event the Saturday before the game outside of Paul Brown Stadium where 600 pairs of tickets were given away to fans by Ocho Cinco and Motorola on a first-come, first-serve basis. The entire chain of events was set off by Ocho Cinco breaking the news on Friday through Twitter. In a matter of roughly 24 hours, Motorola PR engaged the Cincinnati Bengals’ front office and PR department, secured the tickets, organized the ticket giveaway event, announced the ticket purchase and giveaway and executed a successful event that Saturday that saw a line of over 1,000 fans camped out at the stadium the night prior in order to receive the tickets.
With Motorola preparing to announce its season-long marketing and PR platform around Ocho Cinco in the following week, the stunt proved to be the ideal platform to establish a strong association between Motorola and the enigmatic Bengals star. Coverage was garnered from the top national sports news outlets and web sites, with the story undoubtedly dominating local Cincinnati news from Friday night through Monday morning. Highlights included coverage from ESPN SportsCenter, Sports Illustrated.com, ESPN NFL Live, NFL Network and more than 22 broadcast segments along in Cincinnati. The move triggered both local and national attention through a host of media coverage over the weekend about how Motorola “saved the day.” In addition, the web saw a flurry of consumer feedback, commending Motorola and Ocho Cinco for the rare gesture of good will.
“ Money in Ohio is tight, Ohio has lost over 400,000 jobs in the past few years so barely anyone can afford to go to the games. I commend Motorola and Ocho-cinco for this” “ Looks like Ray Lewis knocked some sense it Ocho... bad joke... props to Chad and his sponsor” “ Well done Motorola and Ochocinco. Regardless of their history, this is a good thing for the nati” “ With the unemployment rate in Ohio, the Browns owe it to us fans who have dished out money for years and nearly sold out more games than we've won since 2003. Giving away 1200 tickets aint bad and they (motorola, and Local 12) should be applauded.” “ Congrats to Motorola and OCHO.”
“ I actually like Chad, but who really thinks this was his idea? I wouldn't put it past him since he seems like an [overall] honest guy, but I think it was some creative marketing with his 'partner' Motorola. Either way, good call. The few grand in cost for those tix giveaways will come back to them 100-fold in good-will marketing. Now, how 'bout some free Bears tix?” “ Kudos to Motorola and Ocho Cinco” “ What a great thing that Chad did......it is great to see a wealthy individual and a successful corporation taking care of the people affected by tough economic times. Awesome work Motorola and Chad Ochocinco! You both set an example for your peers in football and in business.” “ It was a nice move by Ochocinco and Motorola… I am a big Chad fan because he is so entertaining and obviously wants to have fun playing the game. I hope he gets to kick more field goals too!”