Articles

Challenges:

The Juanita Boddie Invitational Volleyball Tournament, named in honor of the legendary high school volleyball coach and women’s athletics mentor, was entering its 30th year as one of the premier tournaments for the Southeast’s top volleyball teams. For years, the event had been staged in venues that were not conducive to growth or a fan and athlete experience worthy of its prestigious pedigree. Our challenges included building the tournament brand and increasing the value of the event, and working with tournament organizers to develop a long-term strategy that would position the tournament for future success. We identified untapped marketing and sponsorship opportunities, created a strong brand, and built a framework to position the tournament for future growth.

 Solutions:

We identified three areas in which we could increase value and make a significant impact:

First, we executed a complete branding strategy, incorporating a strong logo design, promotional materials, a cutting-edge digital event guide, and all signage and registration pieces tied to the event. The brand is clean and consistent, and in keeping with the rich history of the tournament.

Second, we chose a new world-class venue, the Birmingham Crossplex, to host the event. This afforded fans and athletes an “upgraded” experience with more conveniences. Plentiful parking, comfortable seating, Olympic-caliber volleyball courts, and an optional VIP Program were just a few of the noticeable improvements that added immediate value to the tournament.

Third, we developed a comprehensive marketing and sponsorship plan to leverage the value of the tournament in the following ways:

-Increased exposure through dedicated media relations efforts

-Formed new partnerships with key regional sponsors

-Developed a charity component for the tournament, increasing exposure in the community

Results:

With the new brand, upgraded venue, and valuable new sponsorships in place, the Juanita Boddie Invitational Volleyball tournament is well-positioned for growth. The 2012 edition was extremely successful, from ticket receipts to positive feedback from athletes, coaches and fans. In 2013, the event will expand to offer both varsity and junior varsity divisions, providing more opportunity to showcase some of the best high school volleyball players in the nation.