FanDuel, Adidas, American Express Execs Talk Brand Marketing In 2018

Over the past 10 days, Sports Business Chronicle has highlighted how senior executives and key decision-makers see the next 12 months playing out across a variety of areas in sports business. We dove into talent representation, social/digital media, ticketing, esports, AR/VR, general businesstechnology, traditional media and corporate/experiential marketing.

We’ve reached the final installment of the #SBC2018 series, where we asked brand marketers, what are the trends/hot-button topics you’re following as it relates to brand marketing/sponsorship, and what is your big, bold prediction for the space in 2018? 

You’ll find that the two questions for most of these articles are similar — that’s on purpose. Participants could answer one or both questions and were limited to 100 words total (not 100 per question). Below are their emailed responses, which have been edited for brevity and clarity.

To follow the conversation on Twitter, use the hashtag #SBC2018.


Prediction: Half the state legislatures will move on legalized sports betting. After oral arguments in front of the Supreme Court in Christie vs. NCAA, it’s clear there is a strong chance the door will open for legalized sports betting. My prediction is that by the end of 2018 over 20 new states will have followed New Jersey’s lead and introduced laws to permit legal sports betting. Ten will pass legislation next year. Finally, those laws will authorize both land-based and mobile sports books, a full 21st century solution and one necessary to address the market demand presently served largely by a black market.

— Christian Genetski, Chief Commercial Officer, FanDuel

Trends/predictions: We continue to find that sports fans are increasingly looking for brands to provide customized benefits that go beyond the game and enhance their overall in-venue experience. At American Express, we’ve worked with our partners to develop unique fan services and Card Member plus-ups such as early entry into arenas, exclusive gifts with purchase at team concession locations and more to address this need. Because we know fans expect these benefits, brands will work harder leveraging their live and digital channels to deliver true consumer value, both during heat moments and all season long, with the goal of breaking through.

— Lisa Kahn, Director, Global Partnership Strategy, Teams and Venues, American Express

Trends/topics: Interested in following global brands that are re-working their marketing organizations to drive “full funnel” integration from advertising to e-commerce transactions and its implication across agency and technology partnerships to accelerate this significant shift in brand marketing. Prediction: Athletic retail reaches a tipping point and clear winners and losers emerge led by accelerating retail consolidation.

— Simon Atkins, Brand Director, adidas North America

About Mark J. Burns

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