Welcome back to offseason hockey, where things can and will get weirder.
In the NHL’s constant quest to be taken seriously as a professional sports organization, they’ve taken on some pretty awesome partnerships. Addias comes out with fantastic gear, EA Sports shows up every year with a bigger, badder (debatably better) version of their NHL series, and there are enough food and beverage sponsors to plaster logos over any free fan item a team might offer.
But hold those horses… because the NHL is about to get so much classier.
The NHL announced this morning that it is partnering with Jägermeister and it henceforth will be known as, “the official shot of the NHL.” Now, most people viewing a hockey game might say, “Hey, I want to remember and cherish this moment for all of my days,” but for those who don’t – this is a dream partnership.
The premise of Jägermeister’s campaign will focus on the catchphrase “ice cold,” and they intend to roll out, “engaging 360-degree, integrated programs that will be supported across various retail, in-venue and on premise channels” according to the press release. This is with all hopes that consumers have not had more than one shot of the liqueur, otherwise, 360 degrees could get a little hazy and confusing.
This might be a wonderful plan for Jägermeister and the NHL to bring in a younger demographic. Jägermeister’s demo is mainly males under 24 and others who can afford to buy Red Bull but won’t shell out for nicer alcohol. Roasting aside, this actually looks to be a much more favorable match for the alcoholic beverage company, as they will be able to tap into the NHL’s ridiculously devoted fanbase.
As Chris Peddy, Mast-Jägermeister U.S. Chief Marketing Officer, so eloquently put it, ” At Jägermeister, we strive to engage with our fans in unique ways by offering one-of-a-kind experiences, especially in the sports world… as the official ice cold shot of the NHL, our fans will enjoy the ice cold herbal liqueur they love with the unparalleled experience of the NHL.”
So what does the NHL gain? Drunker fans? A free shot of liquid courage for players before the game?
Well, Jägermeister is actually a surprisingly innovative company. They kind of have to be. In the past few years they’ve launched numerous successful activation including the “Be the Meister” campaign and their subtle bottle redesign to highlight the ‘craft’ nature of the company. So the NHL will hopefully gain expertly curated alcoholic advertising, something that it tends to lack in comparison to other major league sports organizations.
Now, whether or not this entire partnership was inspired by the Washington Capitals’ drunken charades post-Stanley Cup win remains to be seen. There are no stats on how much Jägermeister was consumed then versus other beverages. Or if anyone was even counting. At this point, it’s safe to assume if the Capitals go back-to-back as intended, Jägermeister is going to be knees deep in free social advertising.