It’s the biggest sporting event in America including a ridiculous horde of media. So many media in fact, they have a whole day called, “Media Day.”
This blog comes to you from the NFL Super Bowl XLVI Media Center in glamorous downtown Indianapolis, Indiana. If you had news to share with the world, this would be the place to share it. This is my ninth Super Bowl so I’ve been here before. I made grilled cheese sandwiches with Dan Marino and Joe Montana. I helped Haitian relief efforts with Chad Ochocinco. I once played catch with Joe Theismann. I even erected a huge snore-o-meter for all the world to enjoy.
NFL players are mobbed at press conferences, which seem to happen on the hour. PR people and sports agents escort their golden geese from place to place, just like in Jerry Maguire. NFL players who aren’t playing in the game come to push the products of their endorsers. Celebrities come from Hollywood to push the Super Bowl commercials in which they appear. Madonna rehearses for her big halftime show where she will somehow shock the world.
It’s a spectacle to be sure, and it’s nice work if you can get it. For PR people, there’s a right way and wrong way to go about it. Seriously, crickets can be heard at some of these press conferences. Only the crickets are international journalists who have no idea what you are talking about. The point is, you don’t just survive here. You either own it, or you’re a loser.
Here are my five Super Bowl Media Day tips for PR people …
1. Be First
Get into town as early as you can. You’ll want to know where everything is and it will help you to relax. Be nice and establish relationships with security. Later on when you need it, they may even wave you by because they think you’re a big shot.
2. Check Your Bad Karma at the Door
Be patient! Don’t bring your big city attitude with you. Everything is staffed by a volunteer. Volunteer means senior citizen. They are cheerful and knowledgeable about the host city, but they will slow you down — BIGTIME. The good news is they are easily distracted by simple Jedi mind tricks, like using a clipboard instead of a media pass to get through security.
3. Get Over Yourself
Talk to people when you have time about anything but what you are working on. PR people have been known to drink the Kool-Aid. Nobody here cares. You’re better off spending your time listening and collecting information that may be helpful to you and your campaign. You can’t do that if you’re talking constantly.
4. Grab a Souvenir at Target
If you’re budget minded, the official Super Bowl souvenir stands are not for you. Key chains should not cost $50, but they do here. You will find cool stuff away from the official stands.
5. Do Your Job
You are here to do a job. Everyone else is here to party. Stay out of the clubs. Get a good night sleep each night and focus on the task at hand, generating buzz for your client. You don’t want the kind of buzz that is generated in a strip club during Super Bowl media week.