• Kings Pull Potentially Racist T-Shirt Before Game

    by Takara Scott-Johnston February 2016

    The Sacramento Kings’ Monday night game against the Milwaukee Bucks got off to a rough start. Approximately 90 minutes before tip off a t-shirt giveaway was canceled -- after the shirts had been placed on every seat in the facility.

  • High School’s First Black Court to Debut This Weekend

    by Emily Attwood January 2016

    Our article on basketball court branding in the November/December issue of Athletic Business felt all too familiar to Steve Denny, director of athletics at The Master's Academy Orlando, Fla. Many of the details in the article, from brand aesthetics to marketing potential and application techniques had been discussed by the athletic department at great length over the last few months. And this weekend, Masters Academy is unveiling its latest branding tool, a completely black hardwood court.

  • Basketball Court Design as Branding Tool

    by Emily Attwood December 2015

    Remember when the University of Oregon changed the look of college basketball with its evergreen-silhouetted court at Matthew Knight Arena in 2011? Or when Florida International University's beach-towel-themed court raised some eyebrows in 2013? The two are notable examples in a growling list of unique court designs. past summer, the University of Maryland unveiled its new flag-bordered design at the XFINITY Center; Northern Kentucky University unveiled a floor "watermarked" with a Norse ship at BB&T Arena; and a handful of NBA teams unveiled new court designs. "Over the past four or five years, there's been a tremendous focus for branding opportunities on basketball courts and getting your message out," says John Prater, president of Chattanooga, Tenn.-based Praters Athletic Flooring, the creative spark behind some of college athletics' most iconic basketball courts.

  • Our New Day-to-Day Approach to Member Retention

    by Rob Bishop November 2015

    For 20 years we've been telling people and writing about how there are two kinds of gyms — those that are "sales" focused and those that are "retention" focused. We put ourselves squarely in the second camp since we've never had salespeople, we use no high-pressure sales techniques and our entire business model is based on the premise that we need our members to actually use our clubs and thus continue their memberships.

  • ABC Trade Show a Must for Long-Time Exhibitors and Newcomers

    by Paul Steinbach October 2015

    Matrix brand fitness equipment will be on display this Nov. 19 and 20 at the 34th annual Athletic Business Conference & Expo, just as it has been for eight previous years. What keeps the company coming back?

  • Ten Tips for Maximizing the ABC Expo Experience

    by Paul Steinbach October 2015

    Canvassing an exhibition as large and diverse as the Athletic Business Conference & Expo — with its 260 vendors encompassing everything from sports architecture to team apparel — can be a time-management challenge, if not outright intimidating. It doesn't need to be. AB asked frequent ABC visitors to put on comfortable shoes and walk us through their tricks of the trade show floor. Here's what we learned:

  • Broncos Unveil Twitter-Powered Vending Machine

    by Jason Scott October 2015

    Social media continues to wind it’s way into the sports world, and teams are using social to take fan engagement efforts to a new level. Generating social mentions is valuable, and teams are driving presence online is of increasing importance to teams.

  • Congress Calls for Ban on 'Pay for Patriotism' Promotions

    by Jason Scott October 2015

    From 2011 to 2014, the NFL collected a reported $5.4 million in taxpayer money for mid-game salutes to the military. Calling the promotions “pay for patriotism” and “marketing gimmicks,” Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) has convinced Congress to ban this kind of activity at major sporting events.

  • Top Apparel Companies Vying for College Athletic Contracts

    by Laura Godlewski October 2015

    Largest video board in college athletics? Auburn University claims that honor, at least for this year, debuting a new 10,830-square-foot board in August. It's been a point of distinction proudly displayed during the current football season.

  • Five Things the Presence of a New Competitor Has Taught Us

    by Rob Bishop September 2015

    We've often written in these pages and spoken at the Athletic Business Conference about "the big squeeze." And now, after 20 years in business, we are the orange.