Complaints about Game Ops and Marketing

Discussion in 'Columbus Blue Jackets' started by Iron Balls McGinty, Oct 25, 2018.

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  1. Iron Balls McGinty

    Iron Balls McGinty Registered User

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    So I read the article today about lower attendance this year so far and many of the comments in the article focused on STH value and the Game Ops being stagnant. I won't get into the STH items but I'm curious to know how many people have complaints about the game ops and marketing and how it relates to your experience.

    Game ops are essentially the same as they were when the team started. The chili chant is old and who goes to Rooster's for Chili? Giveaways during the season are almost non existent. I can't find a published promotion schedule on the website if one even exists. If there are any giveaways it involves a free t shirt that fits 1 body type. Marketing of the team has been the same for the last few years with no changes. The intermission games are the same.

    In the article Werenski himself essentially called out the team marketing saying that he and some others want to help build this fan base, they are just waiting to be told how they can help. Even in the early days of the team there were more player appearances for fans. Outside the random celebrity bartender event players are not doing promotion for the team like they used to do. Even the STH appreciation night is restricted to full season holders now.

    How much of our malaise toward the team has to do with the uncertain future of the "stars" of this team versus going to the arena for the exact same experience we've seen for 18 years? If the team isn't putting any effort into making the game experience better, how can I expect them to put effort into making the on ice product better?
     
  2. Jackets Woodchuck

    Jackets Woodchuck Registered User

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    A few thoughts:

    It's not like most teams are changing their game break (between innings, halftime, intermission, etc.) entertainment constantly. What you're seeing is pretty normal.

    Team marketing changes a bit from year-to-year but usually tries to stay within a certain "brand" outside of a total rebranding (i.e. logo change).

    The chili chant has pretty much reached tradition level now. As long as there is a restaurant willing to sponsor it, it is likely to stay.

    Player appearances may be a CBA issue.

    The lack of promotion of the promotion schedule is likely a Columbus thing. I've noticed that Cleveland teams tend to promote their promotions more because Cleveland's sports culture came from baseball, where promotions are commonplace in order to get 81 good crowds a year. Columbus' sports culture, however, comes from college football, specifically OSU. This leads to a mindset of "if you don't have 100,000 people per game with 100 times that wanting to get in at $100 get-in price with no promotion, you're a joke" mentality. In such an environment, a promotions schedule may be seen as admitting failure.

    There also seems to be some giveaways announced during the season.

    By the way promotion schedule is here:

    Columbus Blue Jackets Ticket Promotions
     
  3. Jackets Woodchuck

    Jackets Woodchuck Registered User

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    The biggest issue, however, has been the relative lack of success in a city used to winning all the time (OSU football).
     
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  4. WubbaLubbaDubDub

    WubbaLubbaDubDub And that's why I always say, Shumshumschilpiddydah

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    Gotta generate revenue to really push and promote stuff and as sad as it is, the city just doesn't care until after tOSU season is over and it's getting close to playoff time. Granted they can still fill up the seats here and there but it's not where it needs to be.

    Winning changes all of this imo that's the only thing that's going to consistently draw in the fans. Not only getting to the playoffs but being perennial contenders.

    Think about all the teams around us and the traditions and legacies of those organizations that we have to live up to. All of the fans in Columbus before the jackets were most likely fans of Chicago, STL, Detroit or Pittsburgh. So not only do you have to draw fans away from teams who have won cups or been extremely successful in the past decade or two. You have to compete with multiple other major sports franchises in the state as well as one of the biggest colleges in country.

    Building a true contender is the only way this changes.
     
  5. thebus88

    thebus88 18/19 Blue Jackets- Sustain the Unsustainability

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    #Bringbackfreefoodnight

    #Bringbackboomer


    (@Aportzline)
     
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  6. CBJWennberg10

    CBJWennberg10 Most Positive CBJ poster

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    The only time, and literally the ONLY time, I remember game ops getting the crowd excited for anything CBJ was when we played Nashville in the season finale during the lockout year (the win and maybe get in game that we won but Minnesota won too so we missed), and they played that one video called Inches.



    It was played at the literal perfect moment. We were down 1 and playing really really well, but we couldn't crack Chris Mason. It was literally right before Jack Johnson (?) scored to tie the game. The crowd went absolutely nuts after this video was played. Even the players said it got them pumped up on the bench (because it was played during a TV timeout or something).



    1:00 in

    The arena is really family friendly, and it's not a BAD thing, but it is kind of stale. You know exactly whats going to happen every game. There will be an intro hype video for each period, the cannon will go off when the players come out of the ice, there will be mini games during the intermissions involving trivia or something, the blimp will fly around, and MAYBE T-shirts given out. It's been the same routine since the first year.

    It's not a BAD thing but it's boring. And I understand you can't do something innovative for every game during an 82 game season+, but maybe something new every week? A new video? Something can be done to get the crowd pumped.

    People complain about the Chili chant, and yeah its dumb as hell but its not there for us to enjoy. It's there because money.

    I see the water commercial involving Torts (and Shelley last year) and it annoys me that players like Cam, Jones, Werenski, or even Bob in his A day aren't featured by anybody. Dubinsky has Meyers Jewelers and Foligno has Papa Johns, other than that no ads involve the players.
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2018
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  7. Palm Tree

    Palm Tree Constant Nostalgiac. Die-hard CBJ fan.

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    This is what your greatest post, ever. IMO.
    Took my thoughts and typed them out to a tee.
     
  8. JacketsDavid

    JacketsDavid Registered User

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    I've been a STH since beginning.
    Honestly I walk into a game in 2018 vs 2000 and only difference is a different scoreboard. Games ops is tweaked but very similar. Most of the STH value is centered around meet the team events and to be very honest I'm not a jock sniffer or cleat chaser. I don't care to go down and hang out with the guys in a forced environment for 30 seconds and then stand in another line or pay to sit at a table with one of them. To each their own though.
    I don't know many of the guys now, several years ago when I lived downtown I knew some of them. Nice guys but they have their business to take care of and I have mine. If I play golf (or grab a beer) with an ex player, that's fun. Going to the zoo or Nationwide to stand in line to get their picture or autograph isn't.
    I get it trying to be fan friendly and create experiences. But I don't give a crap about those.
    I really enjoyed free food night, they took it away to do something else more fan friendly.
    I like the discounts on fan bucks, I like being rewarded by paying early and like access to extra tickets. Above and beyond that it's entertainment.
     
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  9. Speedy Sanderson

    Speedy Sanderson Registered User

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    Jackets need to win, and win big, period. We're 18 years into this thing, and they've never won a playoff series. You want people to come to games and be hyped, put a great team on the ice, at least once. I've had season tickets since day 1, and won't be giving them up any time soon, but I'm in the minority. Most fans are more casual, and want to support a winner. It's amazing how much more energy, and how much more fun the silly entertainment at timeouts and intermissions are, when the place is full. Quite frankly, I'm amazed the Jackets average 14,000 to 15,000 most seasons when they've absolutely let people down just about every year.
     
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  10. EspenK

    EspenK Registered User

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    I haven't been to a Jackets game in NWA since 2010 when we moved away. I recently went to their game in Tampa against the Lightning. To tell you the truth I didn't see a whole lot of difference even though Amalie Arena has been voted #1 fan experience. To me the difference is Bolts fans were expecting a victory and are sold out every game. I'm with the group that says wining will cure everything.
     
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  11. Jackets16

    Jackets16 Registered User

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    I won't comment on if any of this is good or bad. All I will say is this. I've never gone to a game (for any sport or team) for any reason other than to watch the game. Videos, music, giveaways, etc.... have never been a reason for me to go. They should try to make all of that as good as possible though.

    Having said that, I think they need to do a better job of connecting the team to the community (same as with the Crew). I think that would help improve attendance more than anything else.
     
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  12. Iron Balls McGinty

    Iron Balls McGinty Registered User

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    I think as you and others have stated, winning will cure all. I do think some of the other perks need to happen to draw other new fans in from a community engagement perspective. These people won’t show up for t shirts and posters and things like that but getting more players and the team involved in local organizations tied to free or super discount tickets should happen more often.

    I know many band directors in central Ohio and the team is always reaching out to get groups to perform in the arena but they still make the kids buy tickets for the right to perform in the concourse before a game. That seems assinine to me. If I’m going to pay for a ticket I don’t want the extra hassle of lugging around equipment to perform for people and probably miss at least part of the 1st period.
     
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  13. Crede777

    Crede777 Deputized

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    One unique problem the Jackets may have is how to counter the stranglehold OSU athletics is placing on prominent media without labeling themselves anti-OSU.

    It's more than just what sells or who is winning too. OSU exerts anticompetitive pressure on Central Ohio media outlets.
     
  14. leesmith

    leesmith Still in.

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    Compared to Tampa and Vegas, we're not even in the same league with their game time ops. And don't even get me started on our plain vanilla social media.
     
  15. CBJWennberg10

    CBJWennberg10 Most Positive CBJ poster

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    Yeah. Not that it matters but our social media team used to be pretty funny. Now they're pretty bland.
     
  16. DoggyII

    DoggyII Registered User

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    I agree winning helps but two winters ago my wife and I drove up to Montreal for a mid-season midweek game against a non-divisional opponent (the CBJ) and the arena ops were incredible. We were floored by the night and day difference between NWA and Montreal. Sure it helps that the arena was completely packed and the crowd was excited and knowledgable but the in house arena ops knew how to get everyone pumped. Heck...I was pumped and it wasn't even my team!
     
  17. Johansen2Foligno

    Johansen2Foligno Registered User

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    Wendy's stole their social media team.
     
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  18. EspenK

    EspenK Registered User

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    Just saw on Facebook Jackets are giving t-shirts to first 10,000 people at tonight's game. If I was 10,001st in line I'd be annoyed. Especially if I had a kid or two with me. Why not have enough for everyone attending and keep the extras for future promos? I know double the cost but seems like it would be worth it. :dunno:
     
  19. KallioWeHardlyKnewYe

    KallioWeHardlyKnewYe Blue Jacket's Curse

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    What exactly do you mean and do you have examples?

    Not being argumentative. Genuinely curious.
     
  20. Crede777

    Crede777 Deputized

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    I am mainly talking about 97.1 The Fan and local television news.

    The issues around OSU not letting anyone else use their arenas or stadiums (particularly the Horseshoe) is well documented. But that's their property so they can do whatever with it.

    Larger issues arise when you bring up Value City / Schottenstein arena competing with Nationwide for concerts and events, particularly when the Schott tries to undercut Nationwide when bidding.

    What I am alluding to however is with 97.1 The Fan, local television news, and even some Dispatch columnists who have very close ties to the university. I have heard that OSU leverages this to receive coverage or airtime outside of football season and when the men's basketball team is doing poorly to maintain focus on the University and their athletics rather than the Jackets, Crew, Cleveland teams and Cincinatti teams.

    I am a Buckeyes fan and even attended OSU. But they are VERY territorial when it comes to central ohio media to the detriment of almost everyone else.
     
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  21. Bobcat110

    Bobcat110 Registered User

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    OSU having their national championship celebration on the Saturday of NHL All Star Game Weekend when Columbus was hosting.
     
  22. Bobcat110

    Bobcat110 Registered User

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    As for the original question, game ops is annoyingly worn out. But I cannot believe CBJ have earned the ticket prices they are charging now.

    For tonight’s game:

    Lower Bowl Sideline (non premium): $118-$130 PLUS TM fees (the glass and Ticketmaster Lounge seats used to be $125 just a few years back and are now $250+)

    Lower Bowl Behind Goal: $76-$104 + TM fees

    Club: $133 + TM fees

    Upper Bowl Sideline: $64 + TM fees


    If that 7% ticket tax passes, attendance may drop another level.
     
  23. Bobcat110

    Bobcat110 Registered User

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    Also, other than Chicago, the CBJ opponents so far haven’t been high interest teams (Carolina, Arizona, Colorado)
     
  24. Johansen2Foligno

    Johansen2Foligno Registered User

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    ...and how about that airline food?
     
  25. JacketsDavid

    JacketsDavid Registered User

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    Agree 100% on ticket prices. Now as a STH I like it for the games I'm selling but can't believe there is a big amount of folks that want to spend that amount of money for tickets.

    Also agree 100% on ticket tax. As I explained to my ticket rep I already spend $150/game before I walk in the door (2 lowers plus $10 for parking). Throwing in a couple drinks and a bite to each (for each person) and it's easily a $200 night. For OSU I can justify it - it's only 6-7 times per year. For CBJ it's expensive for that many games.
     

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