On the Mets, the Devils and BRAND

photo credit: Michael Vercelletto
photo credit: Michael Vercelletto

I stumbled across a really good article about how the Devils are trying to improve their business.  Most people default to “win and they will come” but even that hasn’t worked in New Jersey.  A bunch of cups.  An all-time great.  New building.  Empty seats.  So they hired some guys to improve The Brand. From the profile two things jumped out at me.

 “There’s an old expression: The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The second best time is today.” So he’s spent the last six months dropping seeds.

I am going to steal it because it puts to words what I have been screaming about for six years here on Mets Police (our anniversary is tomorrow).

I think a lot of the Mets current problems go back to goofing with the brand since around 1992.  They owned the town in the 80’s but when the losing came couldn’t hold on to the fans.  Then the swoosh jerseys, Mr. Met 1.5, a half-assed Nickelodeon theme park I never understood.  Piazza covered some sins but black jerseys, Omar’s unnecessary marketing that made some of us feel excluded, chasing this hypothetical Asian market…it was always the gimmick of the minute.

Back to the Devils

He is still trying to figure out the culture. “Who are we, really?” he asked. He points to a group of cheerleaders standing on a platform. “Is that really our brand?” he wondered, and it seems clear he already has an answer.

via Politi: Scott ONeil and Hugh Weber want to reinvent the Devils as a business | NJ.com.

Specific to the Devils – yeah that cheerleader thing does always feel weird to me.

So we don’t have a time machine, all we can do is fix things from here out.

What is the Mets brand?

I think The Brand is Pitching (check), Mr. Met (check), stuff I will bundle as “The 7 Line culture” (check), families not Wall Street guys (check-ish), great broadcasting (check), Meet the Mets (organ, original lyrics, check), the original Apple (check), and yes Banner Day (check).  I wish the park had been a little better (many of you overrate it and need to travel to some other parks and/or sit upstairs if you happen to write for a newspaper or host a daily radio show) but it is what it is.

Maybe they have finally figured it out.

Now they need to stick with it.  And stick with it for more than five minutes.  If the Astros switch to lime green uniforms and they sell don’t switch everything Mets to lime green.  If someone starts doing the YMCA Grounds Crew don’t copy it (that did happen in Queens).  Or Sweet Caroline (also happened in Queens).

Be the Mets.  Just be the Mets.  We’re fine being the little brother and the butt of jokes.  It only makes the winning that much sweeter.

Why don't Valverde's socks match the shirt?
Damn this Mets dog is too cute

7 Replies to “On the Mets, the Devils and BRAND”

  1. Another example that bothers me now that we have outfield stands, is fans clamoring to “throw it back” on opposing HRs. We’re not the Cubs, keep your baseball.

  2. “The 7 Line Culture” You bean being a sellout so he can sell t-shorts on Wilpon-leased (and hocked to the gills) property?

    1. Hi Jay,

      Darren is perfectly capable of explaining his brand, but I think it makes total sense to fish where the fish are – and the fish hang out on Shea Bridge. Why wouldn’t he want to sell shirts inside Citi Field? It’s like Matt and Mets Blog? Who wouldn’t want to be the official blog of the Mets?

  3. Very interesting article. Two things come to mind: 1) Mets ownership have no idea who Mets fans are or what matters to them, and 2) Even though the team’s social media work has gotten a lot better and more fan-friendly, the overall ballpark experience is not “welcoming.” It is acceptable at best, and that only because you want to see the Mets and this is the only place to do so.

  4. I grew up a Mets fan (in NJ) and then spent 5 years at Procter & Gamble as a brand manager. I’m now CEO of a tech company in NYC. I would be the Mets’ brand consultant for free if it would stop the kind of ineptitude you reference. You have pull make it happen.

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