The American Marketing Association (AMA) Tampa Bay is pleased to announce that the Tampa Bay Lightning will be recognized as the second-annual Hall of Fame recipient at the annual Marketer of the Year Awards.
The Hall of Fame recognizes a venerable local brand that has distinguished themselves in the marketing community for their excellence. The Tampa Bay Lightning is very intentional about building and strengthening a brand that is authentic, relevant, and exciting. The brand started its transformation in 2010 when Jeff Vinik purchased the team. During his ownership tenure, Vinik has invested nearly $100 million to build one of the top arenas and game presentation experiences in sports for Lightning hockey fans. This includes bringing in dedicated leadership, quality players, a state-of-the art scoreboard, the world's most powerful digital pipe organ, live lightning strikes, fan amenities throughout the arena, and much more. The investments are working well to create an exciting fan experience and nearly 100 straight games have sold out.
Eric Blankenship, VP of Marketing for the Tampa Bay Lightning, recently said, "We are humbled and very grateful for this award. This recognition would not be possible without the vision of our owner, Mr. Vinik, the leadership from our CEO, Steve Griggs, the dedication from our executive team, the relentless efforts of our staff and the passionate support of our community and fans. It is an honor and a privilege to accept this award on behalf of everyone that has and continues to elevate the Lightning brand."
According to this ESPN article, the Bolts are rated best for showing appreciation to fans and AMALIE Arena is the most fan-friendly venue in the NHL. The Lightning rank first of 122 teams in the 2016 Ultimate Sports Standings, an in-depth look at the way organizations treat their fans.
The Tampa Bay Lightning will be honored as part of the Marketer of the Year awards ceremony, hosted by the AMA Tampa Bay chapter, on March 2, 2017 at the Bryan Glazer Family JCC, formerly Fort Homer Hesterly Armory. Brands and agencies from all over Tampa Bay will join in the celebration as marketing leaders and teams receive recognition for their successful 2016 marketing campaigns.