Monday, May 15, 2006

Batter Up!

When I heard about this yesterday, I couldn't believe it... I am completely blown away by how cool this cause promotion is - and how thrilled that Major League Baseball decided to participate. If you haven't heard - the Komen Breast Cancer organization put together a promotion where MLB allowed players to use wear pink armbands and to use special "pink" bats celebrating Mother's Day. Even the lineups will be written on pink lineup cards... The folks at Komen don't miss a trick!

In additional to being brilliant from an awareness perspective, the idea that the players would use these bats and then sign and auction them off strikes me as literally, the perfectly conceived fundraiser. More than 400 bats were made for more than 50 players - some even with the players mom's name engraved on the bat.

Locally, the details are awe-inspiring... in Atlanta, the Braves recognized more than 300 survivors. In Cleveland, a huge huge pink ribbon was stretched out in center field and in Tampa, the Devil Rays provided pink visors to the first 7,500 women attending Sunday's game against Toronto.

And in LA before the Angels, player Tim Salmon gave flowers to five mothers and their children. An essay contest resulted in winners who got the opportunity to throw out the first pitch and to deliver the "play ball" call prior to game time.

From an NPO/cause marketing perspective, it hasn't gotten by that MLB also figured out how to activate this promotion with not only national media, but local club/franchise participation - and with additional help from the players themselves. A lesson that large, multi-affiliated NPO's should look at closely and one that Komen has clearly figured out.


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