Auntie Em: a Twister, a Twister!

Posted: March 28, 2011 in Marketing, PR, Strikeforce, UFC

Yes, this Eddie Bravo.

Even you didn’t watch this weekend’s free fights from the UFC on SPIKE or Facebook you likely have heard about the submission of the night/ week/month/ year from “The Korean Zombie,” Chan Sung Jung.   Jung hit the UFC’s first successful “Twister” – which for any jujitsu fan is the equivalent of seeing Doug Flutie hit the drop kick for the Patriots a few years back. A pretty rare sight.  The move is most notably associated with BJJ ace and friend of Joe Rogan, Eddie Bravo.

For those that missed the submission of the night, here you go:

I fully admit to being one of those folks that missed this rare sub. In fact, I actually did not watch the UFC Fight Night at all this weekend.  When I asked around those friends that did noted to me that they were “flipping around” and not watching with any real interest.

Normally if there is a fight on, I cancel all other activity or go home early to watch…this go-round I did not feel so compelled.  There was no “force” drawing me to the card. This made me take another look at the Zuffa purchase of Strikeforce and ask: Can the Zuffa marketing engine keep up with an expanded schedule and keep fans vested?

With a number of injuries affecting the card, I did not feel like there was any real push from the UFC for this event.  Granted, it was not a PPV where they have a financial interest, but these TV events do create openings to bring in new fans who may be weary to drop money on their first PPV without knowing the sport or the fighters.

If we get into a cycle where there are too many events for the marketing/sales team to create “buzz” around and we fall into an either/or focus situation then what we’ll get is just a handful of title fight cards that receive the A-List treatment and then a larger number of events that fall to the marketing wayside.

Now you may be thinking – “well duh, title fights are more important.”  Yes, if I’m going to pick between a PPV with a title fight and one without I usually know where my hard-earned dollars will go.  But this my friends is the dilemma.  How do you break this mentality?  With strong marketing you can make the most indecisive fan WANT to see the event.   You don’t need a “Primetime” special for every main event, that would be a bit over the top.  However, I think there needs to be a middle

I hope Zuffa will take the time to not only market these “smaller” events but help market the fighters involved.  The next Jon Jones or Cain Valesquez could be overlooked by fans if they don’t feel that need to tune in.  My biggest fear with the MMA calendar expanding is that we could become a bit more lackadaisical. Think about the baseball or basketball seasons – even the most die-hard fans don’t watch every game anymore…

  1. […] to Fighters Only Magazine Joe Rogan received his black belt from Eddie Bravo this week.  Unlike a lot of McDojos that throw around belts after a few lessons, Rogan earned this […]

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