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Sports Brands’ Superfans

Posted: November 7, 2014, 2:15 p.m.
by Michelle Sue Agee.

Sports brands are powerful. Each brand is embedded within a city; local fans believe in their team and display its colors. The brand is accessible and tangible. Sports brands also create an emotional experience for those at the game while simultaneously broadcasting and streaming online. Spectators from afar can follow any social media account for updates and behind-the-scenes looks. Passion for the game and glory of the players make each sports brand feel fresh every season.

John F. Rhodes/ Dallas News Staff Photographer
John F. Rhodes/ Dallas News Staff Photographer

For example, North Texan sports fanatics can have it their way — cheering for Dallas all year long — with choices between the Dallas Cowboys, Texas Rangers, Dallas Mavericks and Dallas Stars. Obviously each sports experience in Dallas varies due to season, sport, venue and opponent. Each team puts on a show for the crowd, but the Rowdy, Proud and Loud Dallas Mavericks fans that Mark Cuban assembled consume basketball at the American Airlines Center in an authentic way; the atmosphere is electric.

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban is conscious of fan experience, especially for season ticket holders. All ticket holders are herded into the lively American Airlines center. Fans try to catch the attention of Champ and Mavs Man — the Texas organization has two mascots, of course — and they blow up their thundersticks. Early arrival fans clutch their prizes (bobble heads, yard gnomes or free shirts). Fans cheer, tweet and grab beer before the stadium blackout and player roll call.

Jonathan Zizzo /
Jonathan Zizzo /

The AA center is constantly filled with sound and energy — it boils down to the drumline. You’ve got to have one! It’s amazing how a basic and clean sound can drive the AV system. The Mavericks Drumline is situated far behind a backboard. Across the aisle are the real rowdy, proud, loud folk: the ManiACCs “a magical man dance troupe.” These large men have standard cheers, have their own stadium cam and perform during halftime. Yes, there are actual Dallas Mavericks Dancers, who provide cheering and dancing like any regular squad, but the ManiAAcs have to get more camera love during the game. It’s weird; it’s fun; it’s authentic.

In a post entitled The Mavs Are a Business like No Other, owner and entrepreneur Mark Cuban declared the importance of hospitality and fan experience.

“In a years [sic] time they won’t remember the score, or even a single play from the game, but they will remember who they were with and how they felt during the game,” Cuban wrote. “It is a special trust that is incumbent on me and all Mavs employees to live up to. It is expensive to deliver on this goal. But it is worth every penny. No matter what it costs. I’m proud of the fact that the Mavs spend, by all accounts, more than any other team in any sport around the world on in [sic] game entertainment and experience. While other teams worry about wi-fi and apps, we worry about creating an experience that is unique to Mavs games.”

Sports fans are loud; a game is one of the few public opportunities that one can holler, clap, cheer and boo for a few hours. Mavs fans are engaged during the entire ballgame. The Dr Pepper Ball Men also join the floor to take shots and throw freebies in the crowd. Sometimes guests or groups are recognized (for example, Seats for Soldiers program).

Matthew Emmons / USA Today
Matthew Emmons / USA Today

The Dallas Mavericks’ active investment in team chemistry and fan relationships keeps them in the top 10 most valuable NBA teams. The organization prominently features its entertainment groups and plugs its corporate social responsibility on and off the court. Fans are assured that their organization gives back to the community and their roster is happy in Dallas — see one of the numerous silly/trendy Mavs parodies. The Mavericks have a good aura around them and millions have made a commitment #MFFL Mavs Fan For Life.

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