Tag Archive | "Sports Marketing"

The Sports Marketing / Management Degree Track: A Bright Spot


Mark Cuban and others (Including TSR), have questioned the value of the Sports Marketing and Sports Management degree. The issue was whether the curriculum and coursework connected with these disciplines would add value to Sports Industry employers and the industry as a whole.

Since the Job Board was created – www.thesportsresume.com/job-search – adding at least 20 new positions daily, a large number of employers appear to seek graduates with a Bachelors degree in either Sports Marketing, Management, or Administration. The employer list includes Fox Sports, SKY Sports, Major League Baseball, StubHub, U.S. Olympic Committee, and many collegiate athletic departments.

Sports Marketing/Management degree Job Seekers, make sure your visit the Job Board – www.thesportsresume.com/job-search (CATEGORY: Sports Marketing/Management) daily.

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Mark Cuban on the SPORTS MANAGEMENT / MARKETING Degree: Relevant (?)


Mark Cuban (MAJOR LEAGUE ENTREPRENEUR), owner of the Dallas Mavericks and member of the SHARK TANK provided more commentary last week on his blog (BLOG MAVERICK) on the relevance of Sports Management / Marketing degree programs. Cuban does not think they add value to student’s career pursuits, while questioning their relevance in the marketplace (Of course focusing exclusively on the Sports Industry). Here is an excerpt of Cuban’s blog with his analysis:

NOTE: Mark Cuban made a similar statement before at the MIT Sports Analytics Conference (Start at the 48:51 point).

5. Selling is the most important job at a team

Everyone majors in sports marketing. There is no more worthless major.  Every school seems to have a major in sports management .  Why do the schools and kids think that across the tens of thousands of graduates from these programs there is going to be a job than even comes close to paying off their student loans. Do the math.

Lets say there are 120 top pro teams.  This article says there are about 12k sports marketing grads each year.  The competition for jobs at pro teams is so brutal that we don’t have to pay much. Yet schools keep signing up kids. If schools want to have any value to sports teams they should offer degrees in Sales.  Not sports sales. Just sales.  Teach kids to sell and they can get jobs anywhere anytime.  Teach kids sports management and you improve their chances of getting a job at Fridays.

At the Mavs we value customer satisfaction and sales.  We want you to have an amazing time at a game. We want our advertiser/sponsors to get amazing value from their Mavs partnerships.  We want to have enough great salespeople to reach out and communicate all of the above. Every team can not have enough great salespeople.

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Bill Sutton, a member of the University of South Florida faculty (Sport and Business Management MBA program) provided a response in the SPORTS BUSINESS JOURNAL (Article Below):

I have always had the philosophy that there is something that can be learned from almost anyone or any experience. Thus, I have learned a variety of things from Mark Cuban over the years, some positive and some negative. In terms of the positives, he has:

Been the leading voice in fan advocacy and creating a great fan experience and embracing his fans.

Pushed the envelope to create new revenue streams and criticized those organizations that stand pat with their hands out waiting for a check.

Provided leadership in the technology space, including innovations to improve the fan experience in-venue and at home.

Embraced social media and provided his email address to the public.

Advocated the importance of sales, and once (I am told) instructed his sales team that they were not selling tickets but “good times.”

I have always offered a sales course or a sales experience as far back as my teaching days at then Robert Morris College. In 1986, USA Today wrote a story about my sales project with the Pittsburgh Pirates and titled the column “Tough Way to Get an A.” I believe sales to be essential to any sports business curriculum, but not necessarily that every student should pursue a career in sales. It is important, however, for all of our students to understand how sales affect sports organizations and how to use sales in other business contexts.

My main issue is with Mark using his platform and popularity to make blanket statements that have shock value and have proved to be hurtful and damaging to some. Recently, in a Feb. 23 post on his Blog Maverick, Mark made the following blanket statement: “Everyone majors in sports marketing. There is no more worthless major.” Wow, Mark? Everyone? Worthless? That statement is offensive to me and the students that I have taught and placed in the sports industry over the past 28 years.

But to be fair, let me comment on some of the other things Mark said about sports management programs. Are there too many sports management programs and too many graduates? Probably. This is a problem for schools and universities and also for the academic organizations that have tried to police the growth and monitor the quality of programs through various attempts at certification. Not all sports business programs or the instructors that teach in those programs are equal. Like anything else in society, the quality is driven by the vision, experience and dedication of the individual in charge. Mark also made the point that sales should be at the core of the curriculum. I couldn’t agree more because selling is the key that unlocks everything else we do in the sports industry.

I have been a thought leader and advocate of industry-based experiential teaching and learning in sports business education, and I have relationships and interact with professors who also integrate their curriculum with the sports industry. Jim Kadlecek at Mount Union University has taught sales for years and has an annual student conference that is also attended by upward of 30 to 40 ticket sales directors each year (many from NBA clubs) who come to recruit. Baylor offers a sports sales major and has worked extensively with professional sports teams in Texas.

Worthless? I think not, but then again not every program believes in integration with the industry.

I am fortunate to be directing a graduate program at the University of South Florida that was created not by the university, but came as the result of an idea and a commitment from the Tampa Bay Lightning to improve its organization. It was the vision of owner Jeff Vinik, CEO Tod Leiweke and COO Steve Griggs to create a program that integrated classroom learning and the new ideas and strategies from an MBA program into the Lightning on a daily basis through students working in what we have defined as a residency.

Students are involved with the Lightning and the team’s goals and objectives and bring those back to the classroom. In some cases, Lightning staffers are adjunct faculty members, helping to teach business analytics and sales. The integration also involves the faculty, who are part of strategic planning sessions, research, training, marketing, event management and sales.

The Lightning financially supports the program and has built a learning lab for faculty and students to use while they are with the team. Each faculty member has office hours at the Lightning not just for our students, but also for Lightning staff members. We have created smaller arrangements with the other pro teams and sports organizations in the Tampa area and, at present, have 30 integrated learning opportunities for our students.

Worthless? I prefer to refer to it as a form of collaborative learning that borders on immersion into education and business by the two partners — USF and Tampa Bay Sports and Entertainment.

To Mark, from all of the sports business programs: Thanks for challenging us. We are far from worthless. We must improve our expectations and elevate our curricula to reflect the changing needs of the sports industry. I have a fond memory, Mark, when you made a comment about the skill levels necessary to work/manage a Dairy Queen. I was impressed when you showed up at the Dairy Queen and worked a shift — that is what a great man would do. So I offer you the same opportunity; come and visit my program. Allow us to share our collaborative educational partnership with the Lightning. If you view it as worthless, I will buy Mavericks ticket plans and donate them to the Dallas Boys and Girls Club. If you find my program has value, perhaps you would consider supporting one student for a year. My email is below. If you are the wise man I believe you to be, I know I will hear from you in the near future. Best of luck to you and the Mavs, and most importantly as you have taught us all, best wishes to your fans for the remainder of the season.

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What are your thoughts, taking into account both view points?

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ARTICLE: “After prayer, what job seekers should do to get noticed”


This is a great article written by Mike Boykin, Vice President of Sports Marketing (@Mike_Boykin) for GMR Marketing. Mr. Boykin provides some very helpful tips and strategies for all candidates seeking Sports-Industry employment opportunities.

Ironic that Mr. Boykin first provides the quote made famous by MAVS owner Mark Cuban (…don’t work in Sports), but also covers information under the following subheadings:
- Network Like Crazy
- Fandom is not a qualification
- Preparation
- Thank-You notes

The article is below

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After prayer, what job seekers should do to get noticed

There are college students graduating this month who spent their senior year taking the necessary steps to prove to companies that they have what it takes to be future stars in the sports business. The opportunities they stalked might include small starting salaries or job descriptions filled with menial tasks, but they are embarking on their dreams of working in sports because each of them understands what it means to “bloom where you’re planted,” as my friend Mark Dyer is fond of saying.

For those of you among this year’s graduates who have done little to no legwork, the gates of hell are about to open. I was recently asked by a student what I would do if I was one of the latter, and I offered two pieces of advice: Read the following Mark Cuban quote, and then pray.

“[This is the] worst possible business in the world for a college graduate to try to get into because it doesn’t pay shit [and] there’s a thousand people applying for every job,” said the Mavericks owner, recently addressing the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference. “I get 20 résumés a week, minimum, minimum, saying, ‘I’ll work for free. I just want a chance.’ I get some — I get one or two a month [saying] ‘I’ll pay you to come work.’”

It’s an intimidating comment that’s purposefully meant to scare some of you away. Sports, like politics, attracts some of the best and brightest for jobs that pay better in other industries. The aforementioned student, undeterred by the Cuban quote, replied, “OK. So what do I do after I pray?” We hold a monthly networking meeting in Charlotte for people seeking jobs in sports, and this is what we tell the ones who are diligent enough to ask.

Network like crazy

There are more networking options readily available today than at any other time in the history of business. Social tools like LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook are the preferred communication platforms of your generation, but not mine or many other hiring managers.

Pick up the phone; attend networking events in your area; ask for a five-minute meeting (before, not during, working hours); and prepare your elevator speech. Create a map of people you meet and let them know other people and organizations with whom you’re communicating. Don’t “spray and pray” your résumé — a great phrase I recently heard. Did you like that job you found this morning on Career Builder? It was filled three days ago.

Fandom is not a qualification

Unless you’re applying for a job as assistant general manager or a fantasy sports editor, no one cares that you won your roto league seven years running. We look for type-A people who are highly self-motivated and want to rule the world — and might have different opinions on how to get there. We want ethical people who take the high road and aren’t afraid to ask, “Is this the right thing to do?” But the magic dust is that they’re collaborative. They want to be part of a team, not pretend to own a team. And the old press box rule applies across sports: “Don’t ask for autographs.”

Preparation

You know what turns off hiring managers? Someone who takes 30 minutes to prepare before coming to see them. In the agency world, we spend hundreds of hours doing background work just to prepare to approach a single potential client, so it’s obvious to us when a job candidate only visits our website to prepare for the interview. If they’re only going to consume a tiny amount, that’s how much they’ve told me they want it.

Seek out people in your network who know about the company. If you don’t have one, find one. The best way to cut through the noise is to get someone to call on your behalf. And never take the introduction for granted because you’re risking the reputation of your reference.

“I have kicked more people out of my office because they weren’t prepared,” said Louis Cunningham, a longtime sports marketer. “There was a friend of mine whose son came to me, and I guess he thought that because of my relationship with his father that he was going to get it easy, and I probably lit into him the hardest because he took advantage of his father’s relationship with me.”

Thank-you notes

Write a note to every person you meet. You’re elevating yourself. You’re differentiating. Make them remember you. If you’re under 35, you’ve grown up in a paperless culture, but you still need to follow your mom’s rule about thank-you notes. If you send me an email three minutes after our interview, I know you sent it in the parking lot, which doesn’t take any effort. I open up every handwritten note I receive; I unfortunately can’t say that about emails.

The bad news if you’re a new graduate without a job? You’re standing on the starting line of the Ironman Triathlon. The good news? If you put in the work to get the work, you’re about to embark on a rewarding career that will bring so many memories that you’ll forget half of them.

Any job search includes challenges and frustrations and discouraging times, but even on the bad days, make the choice to do something: volunteer, write two more letters and make two more phone calls.

Remember the advice from Cuban, but find inspiration in the words of author Mary Anne Radmacher: “Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, ‘I will try again tomorrow.’”

Posted in Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS), Résumé/CV/Cover Letter(s), StudentsComments (0)

INTERNSHIP(s): Securing employment with Crimson Tide Sports Marketing


Tyler Keys: “I did all of the free work and other jobs that interns have to do that nobody else wanted. I did that for close to a year and a half before I got my master’s degree in sports management. For the last six months, I’ve been the corporate sponsorship coordinator for Crimson Tide Sports Marketing.”

This is the season where Sports Industry employers seek candidates for their Summer 2012 Internship opportunities. These companies will receive hundreds if not thousands of applicant submissions. Interviews are usually conducted during the Spring months and decisions made shortly thereafter.

Below is an interesting story provided by Tyler Keys, the Corporate Sponsorship Coordinator for Crimson Tide Sports Marketing (The licensing arm for the University of Alabama Athletic Department). Tyler’s story provides great insight and information for all students currently seeking Summer 2012 opportunities.

NOTE: Remember to get your FREE Résumé/Job Description analysis before applying to any Internship opportunity, courtesy of Résunate and The Sports Résumé: http://get.resunate.com/thesportsresume

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When Tyler Keys graduated from Crossville High School in 2005, he had no idea his future job would be to work with legends of University of Alabama sports.

About three years ago, Keys got an internship working with Crimson Tide Sports Marketing, the official multimedia rights holder for the University of Alabama.

“I did all of the free work and other jobs that interns have to do that nobody else wanted,” Keys said. “I did that for close to a year and a half before I got my master’s degree in sports management. For the last six months, I’ve been the corporate sponsorship coordinator for Crimson Tide Sports Marketing.”

One of Keys’ responsibilities is to locate and get Alabama sports merchandise to be auctioned off on RollTide.com. Keys said all of the memorabilia auctioned off is authentic Alabama merchandise.

“I develop relationships with all of the equipment managers at Alabama,” he said. “We get the leftover equipment, and I bring it back, take photos, inventory it and upload it to the RollTide.com auction.

“Fans can’t find these items in sporting goods stores. We have stuff dating back for multiple years. The public doesn’t have to worry about anything being fabricated. This is all authentic, licensed memorabilia.”

Keys is a big Bama fan, and sometimes he crosses paths with legends like Joe Namath, Kenny Stabler and Ozzie Newsome.

“I get some of the memorabilia autographed,” Keys said. “I go out to university events and get with athletes like Joe Namath, Kenny Stabler and Brody Croyle and get them to autograph the items. Legends come in for all kinds of events, and we get them to sign.”

Keys said meeting Alabama legends was something he never expected.

“It was something I could have never imagined,” Keys said. “Meeting Namath, Newsome and Stabler at events we work on is exciting.”

Keys said prices for memorabilia are set based on the current market value for similar items. He said competitive pricing makes it possible for fans to get sports memorabilia to which they might not ordinarily have access.

“We auction items for football and all university Olympic sports – like baseball, basketball and gymnastics,” he said. “Not a lot of people know about the auction on RollTide.com. We’re hoping to get the word out about it so more people have the chance to bid on memorabilia. You just can’t go anywhere and buy SEC merchandise. You can actually see helmet marks on some of the jerseys.

“We auction off more than merchandise though. We do the Ultimate Football Fan Experience where we auction off four sideline access passes, so the everyday fan can go places they normally couldn’t. They get to go down on the field for about an hour before the game. The fan experience also includes concession vouchers and goodie bags with game-day programs, bobble heads and other memorabilia. We auction off fan experiences for gymnastics, basketball, baseball and softball, too.”

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