TURNER SPORTS | NCAA BASKETBALL
With Turner Sports entering into the first year of a landmark agreement with CBS Sports to air each game of the Division I Men’s Basketball Championship live across four national networks, Coyne PR was tapped to raise nationwide awareness for Turner Sports and its three national networks: TBS, TNT and truTV, as well as the first-ever National Bracket Day, the only day fans had to fill out their brackets.
To generate publicity for Turner Sports’ big day in March, Coyne PR tipped off the effort in January, tapping into the key influencers who are the lifeblood of the sport: college basketball beat writers.
Coyne PR set up one-on-one interviews for Turner executives with college basketball beat writers, including those from the Associated Press, USA Today, The New York Times, New York Post, Philadelphia Daily News and the Newark Star-Ledger. These interviews provided the writers the opportunity to learn firsthand about the details of the agreement and what it means for the fans and Turner.
For writers who could not meet with Turner executives, Coyne PR created the Turner Sports Power Brunch, attended by college basketball writers from the Tri-State area, including writers from Newsday, New York Daily News, Sports Illustrated and the popular college basketball blog Zagsblog.com. Writers were taken behind the scenes of Turner’s upcoming coverage and asked questions of the Turner Sports’ panel, which included Turner Sports’ President David Levy, Executive Producer Jeff Behnke, and broadcasters Marv Albert and Steve Kerr.
Coyne PR also arranged meetings for Turner Sports’ talent to meet with writers at games, and arranged interviews for each to tell the Turner Sports story in key markets.
Coyne PR’s efforts resulted in a steady drumbeat of news for Turner Sports, with stories appearing in top national print and online outlets. As National Bracket Day approached, Coyne PR arranged for an exclusive story to break in the New York Daily News on March 2, detailing how the day would be celebrated nationwide, followed by a full-court press on the media all across the country.
The entire campaign garnered stories that appeared in USA Today (2x), New York Daily News (2x), New York Post (2x), Los Angeles Times, Yahoo! and Newsday (2x) among others. In all, the campaign garnered more than 75 stories and more than 110 million media impressions. It was truly March “Media” Madness for Turner Sports!