This is how to keep a 65-year-old brand fresh and relevant!
Topps, which offered its first baseball cards in 1951, has launched a new card series catering to today’s always on, Internet-connected fans.
TOPPS NOW is a limited edition, 24-hour-only series of baseball cards that’s been available since opening day 2016. New cards are offered for sale based on actual, daily performance.
“The physical cards will be available the very next day to purchase through Topps.com, but for just 24 hours, and will not be available for purchase again.”
“Magical moments will be captured on baseball cards the very next day, giving fans everywhere a chance to own a piece of history almost immediately,” added Clay Luraschi, Topps’ Vice President of Product Development.
This new baseball card product range is a terrific marketing idea.
It’s a smart combination and integration of product development, branding and social marketing. It’s wonderfully in-sync with today’s always connected sports fans. And, it encourages those fans to participate in the process by giving them a say in what cards are selected and produced. Fans can tell the company “every night what they think should be on a TOPPS NOW card through Topps’ social media accounts (Twitter, Instagram and Facebook) utilizing the hashtag #TOPPSNOW.”
The cards cost $9.99 each and can be ordered online with free shipping. Card size is 2.5 by 3.5 inches, with a photo on the front and explanatory info on the back. There’s also a quantity discount.
The best seller to-date is 42-year-old New York Met’s pitcher Bartolo Colon’s home run card with a print run of 8,826 cards. Most of the cards have totaled in the low hundreds range, with a few approaching a 2,000 print quantity.
But TOPPS NOW is more than the number of cards that get printed.
This new product is excellent marketing integration that supports the overall Topps brand, and the baseball card range in particular. It’s about brand-building, enhancing customer experience and increasing fan engagement. TOPPS NOW provides direct interaction with large quantities of fans every day: 136m on Facebook, 95m on Twitter, and 39m on Instagram.
Overall, TOPPS NOW helps boost sales of the entire Topps baseball franchise.
By the way, for those interested, Topps also offers a build-your-own baseball card service. Batter up!
Harvey Chimoff is a versatile marketing and business team leader who believes good marketing sells. Contact him at harveychimoff dot com.