'Superbowl is awesome, but this, (March Madness) is three weeks of awesome,' says Capital One's chief brand officer

Capital One’s chief brand officer, Mark Mentry, believes that the popularity of the Superbowl in advertising overshadows the potential in advertising during other sporting events, specifically during college sports.

While speaking at the 4As Transformation conference in Austin, Mentry shared some of the financial brand’s success in advertising around this year’s March Madness college basketball season.

Capital One launched ‘Road to the Final four,’ a multi-platform campaign, featuring Samuel L. Jackson and Charles Barkley as they travel the country, trying to attend the major basketball games.

He said that fans’ emotional connections to the game coupled with fandom of featured celebrities was the perfect combination for heavy social media response.

“In this case a a lot of folks went online and all these words (related to the ads) were trending,” he said. “More people went to engage with us socially, and that gave us another chance to engage.”

To further engage fans, the brand offered a sweepstakes that offered prizes to fans who’s credit card numbers matched game scores.

It helped the brand “connect with fans on the grassroots level,” he said.

Following the success of the campaign, Capital One plans to advertise around many other college sporting events, which “gives (it) the opportunity to take an entire year to engage fans.”

The brand is expected to boost its engagement during college footbal, and women’s sports.

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