After 19 campaigns in 19 years, the Arizona Coyotes needed an authentic brand to define their team and franchise and excite fans for years to come.
Since moving from Winnipeg to Arizona in 1996, the Coyotes have faced a challenging journey. After multiple ownership changes, financial woes, and eventual bankruptcy, the NHL took ownership of the franchise. A move to Glendale was marred by poor play, losing records, and a disengaged community. But with new, highly motivated ownership; a reenergized front office; top draft picks; and a younger, hungrier roster; the Coyotes looked to 160over90 to develop a brand to reflect the purpose, resolve, and character of the team and their core fans—a consistent messaging platform that would define “The Pack” for generations.
Hockey isn’t a part of Arizona’s identity as it is for Canada, Chicago, or Detroit. In Arizona, it’s the alternative. So an unapologetic and defiant attitude was the key to attracting and keeping their loyal fans. Our “band of outsiders’ hockey” brand reflects the bond between the core group of Coyotes fans and the organization. Defined by our strategy, “A Pack Apart,” the campaign kicked off with an aggressive, long-form video that stirred the players, fans, and franchise. It’s a rallying cry to ignite their punk rock-like, inner-circle fan base. And all season long, we reinforced this message through TV, radio, outdoor, web, social media, a mobile app, and in-stadium branding.
The new brand launched at the start of the NHL season. The team strategically released parts of the campaign to drive buzz and rally fans. A video was sent to season ticket holders that aired on Fox, co-owner Anthony LeBlanc read the new Coyotes anthem at the NHL Draft, and the team leaked brand elements across their social media channels. With these early marketing efforts the Coyotes ignited their fan base and elevated their web presence. To date, they’ve gained Facebook fans and Twitter followers, nearly 100,000 social media impressions, and thousands of video views that have helped to spike season ticket sales. Most importantly, the team has refocused their negative media attention on a promising future, they’ve spread excitement through the sports community for what’s to come, and they’ve effectively created a new breed of supporters—“The Pack.”