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Proposed for 2014: the Schaumburg Zombies

Schaumburg ZombiesProfessional baseball teams are always looking for a new way to reach fans, and the Schaumburg Boomers (independent; Frontier League) have come upon a unique marketing tool: a Kickstarter campaign to finance and promote a Schaumburg Zombies night at Boomers Stadium.

You can view the Kickstarter campaign here.

The premise of Kickstarter is simple: supporters of a person or organization are asked to put up money in advance of a product or service. Once a campaign is funded, the person or organization can go ahead with producing the product or service. Crowdsourcing has led to some great products hitting the market; it’s also a way for existing organizations to reach out to their fans and friends. I’ve used Kickstarter several times in the last year; most of what’s been purchased has been of top quality and arrived in a timely fashion.

The ability to add something unique to the mix in terms of product and marketing appealed to Boomers President/GM Andy Viano, who set up the Kickstarter campaign for the team.

“Admittedly, it’s a free way to get publicity during a slow time of year,” he said. “We pushed it out on social media, and it’s something for us to talk about the next few months. It’s just another arm of the social media stuff we do now.”

Schaumburg Zombies

Under the terms of the Kickstarter campaign, the team will change its name to the Schaumburg Zombies for one night and go with the whole zombie theme, featuring new uniforms, a makeup artist both for team employees and fans, Here’s a description:

As a small business, the Boomers need help in purchasing these great new uniforms (which are available to some Kickstarter supporters — see the rewards for more) and hiring out local professionals to bring the rest of the night to life (pun intended).  As you probably notice from the video, we aren’t exactly talented makeup artists, so we want to hire some of those to give every fan who walks through the gates the opportunity to be turned into a Zombie for the day. We also will hire local theater performers to roam the concourse as zombies for the night and help us play some games with our fans, turning them from the living to the undead as the night moves along. We’re all about fan interaction here at the Boomers/Zombies, and the opportunity to make our fans part of the show is something we relish – and something that really has limitless potential on a night like this one.

Aside from that, we have a few other tricks up our sleeves for the night, including having one player literally rise from the grave before the game, playing zombie movie clips and sound effects during the night, and even serving specialty food items (brains? or at least, chocolate brains) at the concession stands.  

“We want to reach a target audience of a twenty-something/thirty-something fan, and those fans are hard to reach,” Viano added. “That’s the kind of crowd that will get people dressed as zombies.” 

The Kickstarter campaign runs through Jan. 26, 2014. –Kevin Reichard


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