This week sees Minor League Baseball open the doors to the second MiLB Partner Summit, running July 9-11 in Columbus, Ohio during Triple-A All-Star Week. Reps from 20 brands and organizations will gather to discuss MiLB’s marketing and digital strategies and the future growth of the brand (and sign a One-Day Contract with Minor League Baseball to boot). Cynopsis asked MiLB CMO David Wright about the event and its impact.
Wright on lessons learned from year one: The need to plan ahead! 2017 served as the first-ever Partner Summit for Minor League Baseball and its partners. As a result, we were catching up a bit as we began planning the event. This year, we started preparation well ahead of schedule and the end result will be a tremendous showcase for MiLB and a true credit to our League office staff and the host club, the Columbus Clippers.
On changes: We are constantly looking to innovate and I think attendees will walk away seeing the creativity that makes MiLB so special. In addition to continued growing attendance (over 70 confirmed RSVPs and 20-plus brands represented for this year’s event), I am really impressed with the level of attendee and overall executive presence. We are keenly aware that most of the attendees have been to other prominent property events, so to get their attention and share of mind, we need to make it worth their time. It is clear to me that we are becoming more relevant and top of mind amongst decision-makers and industry influencers.
On goals: A number of priorities have guided our MiLB Partner Summit preparation. First, we want every attendee to have a better understanding and deeper appreciation for the Vision of Minor League Baseball (to be a dynamic leader in sport and entertainment). We will also share a lot of great content centered around short, medium and long-term priorities that are very pertinent to our partners. In addition, the event will serve as an incredible opportunity to drive B2B opportunities between partners, clubs, etc. Finally, and in true spirit of MiLB, we want people to have a ton of FUN!
On lessons from the launch of Copa de la Diversion: Oh man, there are many! Most notably, our clubs are incredibly committed to being inclusive and representative of their individual markets. We’ve succeeded in making “Copa de la Diversión” a significant part of participating teams’ identities, and not a one-game promotion or promotional night. If the early metrics are any indication, we are only starting to scratch the surface with “Copa de la Diversión,” and we are already looking ahead to future expansion of the program.
On the future of MiLB and its partners: I see in the not too distant future the MiLB Partner Summit becoming a staple, must attend showcase for current and prospective partners, as well as other key industry executives. While premature, I do think there are opportunities for us to create other showcase events for MiLB in future years. As the business continues to evolve, we will stay committed to finding ways to exceed the needs of our partners, fans, media and other constituents.