PSU Partners with IMG to Expand Ticket Sales

On Monday, IMG College announced that it had entered a partnership with Penn State to enhance ticket sales and forge better communication with customers.

IMG College is the nation’s leading collegiate marketing company. IMG has hired a general manager and will begin with a staff of five additional sales associates at Penn State. The sales team will attempt to maximize the sales of the football, men’s and women’s basketball, as well as the newly established Division I men’s and women’s hockey programs. The official start date for the new sales team is set for October 17.

Greg Myford, Penn State Associate Athletic Director, said via email,”The recent IMG partnership will prove beneficial on many levels, but at the top of that list is making sure that Penn State Athletics is fully prepared—on a year-round basis—to best serve and grow our fan base by being available and making sure that people know not only what Penn State events are coming up, but how easy we can make it for them to come and enjoy those events.  Fundamentally, the value in this partnership is anchored in Penn State being able to establish more meaningful relationships with our fans by providing them the information, access, service and experience they expect when purchasing a ticket to attend a Penn State event.”

IMG College should be able to make some sales strides for the basketball program, especially with exciting new coach Pat Chambers at the helm. Also, they shouldn’t have a hard time trying to market our new revamped hockey programs.

However, can they sell the Guido experience? The Indiana State and Eastern Michigan games saw over 11,000 seats unsold in each. Those two games were two of the lowest attendances that Beaver Stadium has seen since 2001. One culprit, The STEP program, has caused 2,000 alumni to drop their season tickets. You can bet that IMG will be trying to push those tickets on to soon-to-be-graduated alumni.

But could this staff help bridge the Joe Paterno era and the Post-Joe Paterno (hopefully Urban Meyer) era? Well, like it or not, there isn’t a choice. I believe that this is where this relationship will be most valuable. Penn State hasn’t seen a coaching change in 45 years, so bringing in a modern marketing service will provide a very useful perspective.

Fact is, Penn State is having some issues selling the football program, issues that it isn’t used to having. IMG College will have to overcome the (current) product on the field, poor non-conference opponents, STEP, and the eventual transition after Joe Paterno to be successful.

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About the Author

Ryan Beckler

Ryan is a senior in the Smeal College of Business majoring in Marketing. He is a Lion Ambassador who loves giving tours to prospective students. His favorite activities include distributing news and consuming Chipotle.

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