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Brewer Drawn to Coyotes by Team's Potential

by Staff Writer / Arizona Coyotes
GLENDALE -- Jim Brewer, who joined the Coyotes as Vice President of Marketing and Communications in August, recently chatted with Dave Vest of about his new gig.

VEST: Why did you decide to accept the job of V.P. of Marketing and Communications of the Coyotes?

         Jim Brewer
BREWER: "The word that kept coming to my mind as I considered joining the Coyotes was "potential." There is so much potential for success and growth with this team and many opportunities to be an important part of that progress. The chance to take all that I've learned in my 20-year career and bring that to the table on behalf of the Coyotes was one I just couldn't pass up. Plus, the opportunity to work on marketing Arena will be a new challenge, since I’ve not really been involved on that side of the business before."

VEST: What are some of things atop your list of "things to do" before the first game?

BREWER: "Now that I've found the restroom and the ice machine I can turn my attention to figuring out what resources we have and how best to align those resources to be most effective and efficient in getting the word out about the Coyotes. We need to find new ways to break out of the clutter and raise our profile and relevance in this market. Some of that will be advertising, some of that will be grass roots efforts, some of that will be pushing PR and promotion. But, mostly, we need to make sure that first game is a sellout and we'll be working hard to make that happen. Thankfully, we have a very good hockey team to talk about, which is critical."

VEST: You are a native Arizonan and have lived and worked in the Valley for a long time. Give us your take on the Phoenix sports market and where the Coyotes fit?

BREWER: "As a native Arizonan, I know that I’m in the small minority here in the Valley. Obviously, most everyone else was born elsewhere, bringing their own allegiances along. I’ve been to Suns games where a large portion of the crowd were wearing Lakers jerseys, Diamondbacks games surrounded by Cubs fans, Cardinals games with cheeseheads everywhere – that’s just the nature of our market. Because of that lack of a long-term relationship, fans tend to follow whichever team is the most successful at that moment. What you try to do is get ready to capitalize when things are going well and keep everything from declining too far when they aren’t. But you have to start that relationship somewhere and we have some amazing fans already, along with a few that might have been fans at one point and have not been to a game in a while. The Coyotes have a unique opportunity right now with a very good team playing in a great venue, which we saw at the end of last season. The fans are out there, we just need to make sure that we give them several reasons to want to come to a game and then make sure they have a fantastic time when they do."

VEST: You are a big proponent of social media. Please explain how the Coyotes will use social media moving forward with regards to marketing the team and growing/engaging the fan base?

BREWER: "Engaging the fan base is the best terminology for the role social media can play. It’s about opening up a conversation and strengthening your relationship using the platform the technology provides, and we’ll be working hard to do that. We’ll also be doing a ‘Tweet Up’ or two and maybe a ‘Facebook Fan Night’ to offer our social media friends the chance to meet each other – and us – in person. Growing that online community, and then presenting relevant reasons for them to interact with us even more (and come to a game or two) will be an important initiative for us."

Dave Tippett
Head Coach Dave Tippett won the 2010 Jack Adams Award.
VEST: The Coyotes are coming off their most successful season ever. Do you plan to use that success as the cornerstone of the marketing efforts?

BREWER: "Absolutely. As a sports marketer, you realize a couple of things pretty quickly… one, you have no control over how the team performs and, two, your IQ goes up several points when you have a winning team to promote. We will emphasize that we have a very good team and that the experience of coming to a hockey game at Arena is one that you simply don’t want to miss."

VEST: The team's marketing slogan this season will be "Don't Blink." Please explain.

BREWER: "Hockey is simply the best live-action sport going. Period. So much happens so fast, very few breaks, line changes on the fly, overtime, shootouts – if you aren’t there to see it, or even if you ‘blink,’ you are going to miss something great. We’re going to portray this with some fun, exciting advertising and a few other ways. But that’s the basic message, and it’s a hockey experience message related to the team that we have. We know that something exciting is going to happen each and every night and if you aren’t watching, you will miss it. And you won’t want to miss it, that’s for sure."

EDITOR'S NOTE: Click here to read the official release announcing Brewer's hiring.
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