To kick off the 2012 Major League Baseball season (PUT BUTTS IN SEATS), The Kansas City Royals launched a campaign called “Our Time.” With the 2012 All Star Game to be played in Kansas City, the Royals were banking on optimism to sell tickets and inspire people to care about the Royals. Ads featured players like Eric Hosmer (and others you’ve never heard of) in videos talking about this being the “Royals time.”
And by calling this “Our Time” we as consumers were led to believe that there is finally something to root for. You see, the problem is, the Royals have been awful since 1985. They’ve had only seven seasons above 500 since 1985 and zero playoff appearances. So the brand promise “Our Time” seemed, well, more ridiculously optimistic than promising.
So how’s the campaign going? The Royals are 0-10 at home and have won only 3 of their first 17 games.
Now I’m pretty sure some ad agency came up with this concept. One of those moments where a copywriter says, “Man if the Royals actually do well this year, this campaign will be the jam.”
The problem is you can’t align your brand promise with “IF.” If you make a brand promise, you have to keep that promise.
M&M’s, “Melts in your mouth, not in your hands,” or Maxwell House’s “Good to the Last Drop” are brand promises you can actually deliver on. These two promises are something the companies were able to control – the product. And the product on the field for the Royals isn’t much of a product at all. Just look at the guy reading a novel at a recent Royals game.
Here are ten other campaigns that would have fulfilled the promise for the Royals better than “Our Time.”
10.The Kansas City Royals – Come for the beer.
9. The Kansas City Royals - Like a M. Night Shyamalan Movie – intriguing story idea, terrible ending.
8. The Kansas City Royals - We have a merry-go-round and a waterfall!
7. The Kansas City Royals - Our stadium no longer looks like a lego castle.
6. The Kansas City Royals - Every night is Jules Winfield Night – Royale with Cheese
5. The Kansas City Royals – Minor League Ball, Major League Prices
4. The Kansas City Royals – Plenty of Parking and NO Traffic!
3. The Kansas City Royals – Have a Great Meal with George Brett (google at your own risk)
2. The Kansas City Royals – Royalty Free
1. The Kansas City Royals - We suck Royally