It is the day the most people look forward to – runners, college students, professors, and other citizens of Boston. No, it is not the opening day for the Red Sox. It is Marathon Monday. Colleges, universities, and public schools have the day off because it is Patriots Day, but really everyone is heading to watch the Marathon. Runners from all over the world come to participate in this 26.2 mile event. As the world’s oldest marathon, it is something that most people want to take part in.
I remember last year, Verizon Wireless gave out cup holders with the Verizon logo on it. This year, girls walked around handing out free Red Bull cola. At the finish line, there were various booths including Vineyard Vines (http://www.vineyardvines.com/). At checkpoints, Poland Springs was giving the runners water. Dana Farber sponsored many runners who all bore the name of this organization on their shirts. All of these companies and more including Adidas, John Hancock, Gatorade, Saturn, AT&T, JetBlue, PowerBar, HP, Salonpas, Newton-Wellesley Hospital, One Communications, Long’s, Reed & Barton, The Phoenix, Universal Sports, and WBZ, took advantage of this popular event to sponsor and publicize their name in the public eye.
Even after the race, people were discussing the various sponsors. From people running on behalf on an organization to the aluminum covering that participants get at the end of the race that displays the logo of Adidas, the organizations that sponsor are in the public eye. Not only do they get to see one of the world’s most renowned events, but they get to be on various media promoting the event (including televised and print media). Additionally, many college students remember the various sponsors and discuss them later, further utilizing word-of-mouth marketing strategies. These sponsors benefit from both strategies by participating in this event.
To close, the picture of the man who finished first in the 2009 Boston Marathon, Deriba Merga from Ethiopia, has a Nike logo on his shirt and his time is clocked by a timer that says John Hancock on it. These sponsors are further put in the public eye through taking part in this marathon and encourage people to utilize their services and products.