12 May Creating “IMG LIVE Way” at the NFL Draft
This years’ NFL Draft in Chicago was a huge undertaking for IMG LIVE, with a trio of engagements sitting side-by-side-by-side in Grant Park’s Draft Town. Affectionately dubbed (by us) “IMG LIVE Way”, the space included experiences for VISA, DIRECTV and Courtyard Marriott. It was an immense project, requiring a lot of coordination and logistics: (video underneath)
The weather in Chicago had a huge impact on the setup for all of the activations. Each team was forced to breakdown and secure items nightly to prevent them from getting wet or blown away in intense winds. Additional tarps were also sourced to prevent leaking and keep all engagements safe for fans. Luckily, the poor weather didn’t put a damper on attendance and all three footprints saw lines during peak times throughout the weekend.
Though all our activations were centered around Draft weekend and were closely related geographically, each came with their own unique experiences and objectives. Here’s a look at each:
The Visa footprint provided consumers at Draft Town the exclusive opportunity to view four 360˚ Virtual Reality videos of top draft picks. In addition to the VR, the activation let fans experience multi-product demos and sign up to receive Visa Checkout emails through the Fan Mobile Pass, an app for fans onsite which allowed them to interact with the different brand activations. Consumers at the VISA experience also had the opportunity to meet and greet FIVE Chicago Bears’ players (Jeremy Langford, Lance Briggs, Kevin White, Sam Acho and Eddie Royal) and receive a $5 Voucher towards their NFL Shop purchase in Draft Town if they showed their PNC Card.
The VISA activation had 3,117 scans of the Fan Mobile Pass. The VR setup was extremely popular and the experience saw 4,087 engagements.
The DIRECTV space had a fully branded DIRECTV NFL Sunday Ticket RV equipped with 5 televisions on the exterior. The footprint included multiple engagements and also integrated with the NFL Draft’s Fan Mobile Pass via a touchdown dance celebration experience. Fans could share their dance online as a branded GIF and also receive a photo printout on-site. An additional goal of the activation was to create product awareness. With this in mind, we armed brand ambassadors with tablets showcasing the Sunday Ticket demo app. Fans were incentivized to participate by an instant win area where after they listened to the demo, they tapped a QR code to see if they won a prize. As if that wasn’t enough, Deuce McAllister and Charles Tillman also made appearances for a Q&A and an autograph session.
The instant win engagement was a big hit with fans, as evidenced by the constant lines for it throughout the weekend.
For Courtyard, IMG LIVE brought a branded shipping container to Grant Park which opened up to create a customized experience. The activation included the popular 40-character dash; an interactive experience in which fans sprinted around labeled turf to “text” a phrase using their feet. The fastest dasher of each day won a $150 Courtyard gift card. To leverage Courtyard’s partnership with ESPN, the activation also included a mock ESPN broadcast studio where fans could select from 4 pre-taped ESPN broadcaster VO’s to “dubsmash” in the mock studio. If you don’t know what dubsmashing is…Google is this way. Of course, what is an NFL Draft activation without talent? Draftee Braxton Miller, current players DeAngelo Williams, Alshon Jeffery, and Langford (making his second activation appearance), as well as ace NFL reporter Adam Schefter all spent time at the activation. Williams even made an encore appearance, and donated a game-worn jersey to a fan in the crowd who inspired him to do so.
Fans loved the new “Be a Broadcaster” experience, and huge lines formed to meet Jeffery, the Bears’ star wide receiver who signed autographs for 2 hours – cranking out over 400 signatures for fans in that time!
Even though all three footprints shared a squeegee throughout the weekend (voted the must “clutch tool” by show services), great times were still had by all in the Windy City on IMG LIVE Way!