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Steve Olenski: Sixers Go Back To 1776


As you may know, Philly2Philly’s Steve Olenski is quite the marketing master, contributing to Forbes magazine and various other publications.


This week, Steve discussed the Sixers new branding campaign.


There’s a line in the movie The Princess Bride (a cinematic classic by the way) where the character Inigo Montoya says “You told me to go back to the beginning.” Seems as if someone with the Philadelphia 76ers must have bellowed this line themselves over the past year or so because that’s precisely what they’re doing in their new campaign entitled Since 1776.


Or perhaps this is what Mother, the ad agency responsible for the campaign would have said following the direction they received from the team. “You told us to go to back to the beginning.” See they’re not just going back to the beginning of the franchise. No, they’re going back to the beginning of us as in U.S.  - the United States of America. Philly is the birthplace of America so it’s only fitting they go all the way back.


“It is Philadelphia, it is our history as game changing, revolutionary thinkers who were, are and will be part brain and part boxer,” says CEO Scott O’Neil. “Just like we did then, we think differently, we create, invent and reshape. We do things right over choosing that which is easy.”


CMO Tim McDermott says the campaign showcases the unified and unique spirit between the city, the team and the fans. “It highlights our brand personality as gutsy, inventive, real, vibrant, relentless, brotherly, and confident. We are revolutionary at heart.”


A Brand Evolution


The campaign is in fact just the next stage of the brand’s evolution, as McDermott refers to it. An evolution that began back in February with the introduction of a brand strategy book, which came to serve as the brand bible in some ways.


This was followed up by a new logo and uniforms, which were launched in May and June, respectively.

Source: Philadelphia 76ers


Then on September 21, their newly designed court was unveiled and most recently on this past Monday, the release of the new campaign itself which began with this new TV spot.


To read Steve’s entire article, click here.


Source: Philadelphia 76ers

Okafor photo: McCall.com