Holy and Opportunistic?
These are just a few words to describe not only the results of this year’s March Madness action, but the public relations stunts off the court that have accompanied the games on the court.
Here are some of my favorite PR moves of March Madness thus far:
March Madness 2018 has been one for the underdog. Loyola Chicago is only the fourth number 11 seed to reach the Final Four in the history of the Division 1 NCAA men’s basketball tournament. Is it luck? Is it skill? Is it the holy presence of Sister Jean?
For almost 25 years, the 98-year-old Sister Jean Dolores Schmidt has been the team’s chaplain, but also the team’s number one fan. Now, Sister Jean has safely reached celebrity status.
Not only has this made for an entertaining digital atmosphere, but it’s also been a golden opportunity for merchandise sales. Sister Jean licensed her name and image allowing the university and charity to profit off these sales.
Aside from apparel such as T-Shirts and socks, the Sister Jean Bobblehead has officially hit the market, becoming the best-selling bobblehead in the history of the the National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum within just 40-hours.
The best part…. Sister Jean had her own team losing in the Sweet 16. Despite her own busted bracket, the nun has busted into the hearts and wallets of people all over the world.
UMBC Twitter Account
1-135. That’s the all time record for a number 16 seed defeating a number one seed in the history of the Division 1 NCAA men’s basketball tournament. That “1” belongs to the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, who upset the University of Virginia in the first round of this year’s tournament.
The only thing better than the game itself, was the twitter game that accompanied the upset.
The man behind the twitter recognized that UMBC was not necessarily a household name and ran with it. A combination of humor and informational tweets helped the handle @UMBCAthletics gain over 100K followers in just 60 hours. Check it out:
Here are some of my favorite tweets:
UMBC Athletics had the chance to do something out of the ordinary and the retrievers executed…. Not only on the court, but on the keyboard as well!