For those who are unfamiliar with the NBA news at the moment. Lavar Ball, the father of UCLA gurad Lonzo and potential Top 3 draft pick, has launched an exclusive $495 signature show for his son…ok!?
In the NBA, apparel sponsorship deal for NBA players are major investments for major brands such as Nike, Adidas and Under Armour as players attract more fans than teams themselves. As a draft prospect, you dream of releasing your signature shoe in Nike’s line-up with LBJ and Durant, Adidas with D’Rose and Lillard or Under Armour with Steph Curry. Having been rejected by the three major brands to create an exclusive shoe brand for your son who is yet to play in the NBA is a bold move.
Digital Marketing was the main tool used by BBB to launch their new signature sneaker with the YouTube video amassing 1.2 million views since its release. However, the video generated 6,000 likes and 15,000 dislikes and received mixed reviews on social media.
Lavar Ball has strategically generated and built the brand of both BBB and Lonzo Ball. As this is a first in the NBA, the family and BBB has generated a lot of attention from basketball enthusiasts as well as the general public, where they have gained free brand awareness and word of mouth from this controversial move.
Rishe raises important points in a recent article. As someone who has been following UCLA, Lonzo is yet to perform on the professional level and doesn’t present something unique like Curry, LBJ, Durant, Harden or Westbrook. By having his own independent signature sneakers and pricing above their competitors, the pressure on Lonzo to perform will increase. Only time will tell how this innovation turns out.
Have you ever seen a brand that intentionally caused a bit of stir to generate publicity online? How did it work out for them?