TBS’s MLB Postseason Ads Turn Bus Stops Into Dugouts

Turner Broadcasting’s ‘Come Out Swinging’ promotion for Major League Baseball’s postseason is an integrated campaign spearheaded by the elaborate transformations of six bus shelters along Philadelphia’s main Market Street.


For fans waiting to catch a bus along Market Street the flagship transit shelters were transformed into the Philadelphia Phillies own dugout – the objective being to make them feel immersed in the game from a player’s perspective. The outdoor work comes with intense, life-size photos of start players (Howard, Utley, Lee, Jimmy Rollins, Shane Victorino and Cole Hamels) as well as the manager (Charlie Manuel).


The bus shelters were also interactively linked via mobile technology offering travellers an interactive experience. The shelter dugouts include tune-in messages and QR codes are embedded into the dugout display giving fans the ability to receive special tune-in messages by scanning the bar code with their mobile devices. These include content such as the updated post season schedule and messages from Turner’s on air talent talking about the post season.


This launch element of the wider marketing plan aimed to excite the local fan-base and spearhead a national campaign that highlights the players and teams heading into the postseason with the best overall record to-date. Less elaborate outdoor executions being installed” in other potential playoff cities, including Atlanta, Boston, Milwaukee, NY and Phoenix.


Turner Broadcasting System, the exclusive home of all four of Major League Baseball’s Division Series (LDS) and the National League Championship Series (NLCS), put Philadelphia at the launch core of a campaign that stretches across traditional platforms (such as TV, radio, national newspaper print ads) as well as digital and ambient work (including digital out-of-home billboards with real time scores, Facebook and Twitter elements and bus signage in New York, Boston and Philadelphia.


Print ads will also use the QR codes, and digital advertising will include Facebook and Twitter, with the hashtag #postseason being used to drive social media conversations.


“Our annual coverage of Major League Baseball’s postseason has taken a familiar route the past five seasons with a stop in Philadelphia,” said Christina Miller, Turner Sports senior vice president strategy/marketing/programming. “This is a great opportunity to excite the local fan-base and launch a national campaign that highlights their players, as well as the team heading into the postseason with the best overall record to-date.”


Another tie-in element sees Turner running the campaign in 1,400 theaters showing the baseball-themed Moneyball movie.




It’s always tricky to use ambient local installations as the spearhead of a nationwide campaign – but this initiative clearly aims to target those potential viewers and baseball fans who are likely to be most involved in the post season.


By using the QR codes to help connect the various platform executions to a coherent whole the integrated approach ties in well.


But the bus shelter / dug out staging could have been more compelling – perhaps enhanced with further audio and visual elements to help fans imagine the full experience.





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