Lacob and Guber’s media came and went but from the sounds of it, it was full of talk and talk that fans, like myself, like to hear. Rich Twu of Golden State of Mind offers up some wonderful details of the business side of NBA basketball at the Media Luncheon with Lacob and Guber, which just so happens to be the things that I love reading about. The game of basketball is wonderful, but most often than I think not enough attention is paid to the political economy of professional sports, which is equally important to the product displayed to you on your home court. Twu’s piece is a really great read that I believe any fan of the professional sports should read up on.
With that said, Guber (via Rich Twu’s amazing eye-witness account) had some interesting tips on marketing, which I am amped about:
His approach is very engaging. Along with the raspy Bostonian accent, he’ll do a fair amount of hand and arm gesturing, even some finger pointing and poking you just enough to make sure you have his full, undivided attention.
He talked about his concern that young fans aged 7 or 9 would have a hard time coming to a 7:30pm game at Oracle on a Tuesday night. He talked about perhaps having a mascot to re-engage such fans. He talked about how he hated it when someone sang the national anthem and you couldn’t hear what he or she was singing. And how he wants to somehow tie in social media, to which Bucher joked that ethernet at an arena was all but an impossibility.
Guber even broached the subject of anime or animation on-screen at the arena. He joked that the dot races were terribly outdated, although Bucher quipped that they were hugely successful. Guber wasn’t disagreeing with that, but he was hoping for better ideas and even more engaging experience.
It was clear that Guber was ready to put every ounce of his expertise to work, for the benefit of Warrior fans.
Of course, in the press, he will now be forever tied to his, “We’re not the cure for cancer, but we may be the cure for Cohan” quote.
This is just a snippet of what Rich reported on, but I wanted to quote this in length just because I think it gets at some of the ridiculous-ness of the Cohan-era. There’s probably little he can do to change the start of games (interesting approach though putting families first), but his calling out of the randomness of the “Thunder” mascot, his desire for a new mascot (for the kids!), and new in-game entertainment is definitely in the right direction.
We’ve discussed this ad nauseum on Golden State of Mind in the past about what really matters: the actual game or the marketing. And since the Warriors fan base loves the team regardless, marketing tends to get the backseat. But with years of cellar-dwelling with no sign of hope, I, personally, wanted the Warriors to at least make the rest of the experience of going to the Oracle fun. What’s up with the lousy food (even in the Smirnoff Lounge)? Club 200 is family friendly and in the right direction, but what about the adults looking for some "nightlife"when they’re not sitting in the area that allows them access (by the Warriors rules at least) in the Smirnoff Lounge? And instead of Smirnoff, how about something more exciting. How about the “Petron Lounge” or the “Rose Lounge.” Lets get more current!
Anyway, you all should read the whole thing because it is worth it. And it should get you excited about a new Golden State Warriors experience, possibly, that may attract not just more fans, but more free agents.