If we had to grade the marketing efforts of Oregon St. over the past couple seasons it would not be the greatest of marks. Even though OSU has hired an ex-Seattle Sounders marketing guru in John Rizzardini, who has also worked with the LA Galaxy, it seems like efforts to improve are still occuring more sluggishly than many had hoped. There seem to only be minor tweaks so far instead of bolder plans of action to recapture the heart and minds of the fanbase. Add to that the confusion of whether there would be a Spring Game and it hasn’t been exactly world class effort. The game is on, as a scrimmage, and OSU is putting a tad more effort into what it calls Fan Fest.
Well, it is true that fans wanted Truax open for Gamedays, instead we for now only know that it will be open to young children for an hour or so on a day where there might not be more than 5000 total in attendance. Not exactly thinking big, but rather the very definition of baby steps. They probably should do a concert after the event in the future in an attempt to draw 10,000+. If our new marketing guy is as good as advertised he should be able to beat the drum more and find ways to stir excitement and increase the fanbase which is in danger of stagnating after consecutive and downward trending losing seasons.
Give away some freebies at Fan Fest. Nothing outlandish but maybe some poker chip golf ball markers like these that are perfect for everyone attending the Spring game to remember the Beavers during the summer when either playing cards, out on the course, or even during college student or tailgating casual drinking games or parties. Nike already produces them and they cost less than $1 per pair to make. Nike would gladly donate that maybe $3500-$4,000 for an order of 5000 for the Spring Game and easily recover it in increased sales from marketing. All OSU has do is continue to ask Nike to partner with them on further OSU Sports Marketing efforts.
I like the idea because it would cost OSU nothing but fans get a fun keepsake. Much more is needed obviously, but if you are unwilling to even do the small things how can you hope to effectively nail down the bigger picture?
If Oregon State ever hopes to be a big time national program they must make sure Truax is open to fans on Gameday. It is about creating an incredible atmosphere. Little games for kiddies age 8-12 is not the target audience. 20-55 year old adults should be. We need an intro for the team on Gamedays that will rival many seen in the SEC. But where are the sound bytes about these most important concerns that can actually raise the standards and excellence for the Gameday atmosphere?