Controlling The Message

When a company or individual has the opportunity to proactively control the messaging surrounding them, it’s usually a good thing.

The Arizona Cardinals’ recent signing of superstar J.J. Watt is an excellent example of how Watt and the team orchestrated a spectacular introduction to the Phoenix market.

Watt made the announcement of his new team on his own social media platforms, wearing a Cardinals t-shirt during a workout.  He had ordered shirts for a number of teams and had them sent to a friend’s house so nobody would speculate as to where he was going to sign.

Since arriving last week, Watt has said ALL the right things during his news conferences and other interviews.

And he immediately aligned himself with Valley greatness — demonstrating that actions can speak louder than words.

Among the first photos we saw of Watt was him in front of Pat Tillman’s locker in the Cardinals’ dressing room.  He posted the picture on Twitter with this caption: “a true honor to walk the same halls.”  It was reported that he also had meetings with the Tillman Foundation.

He also reconnected with Suns’ All-Star guard Chris Paul. In 2017 when Paul was playing for the Houston Rockets and Watt was with the Texans, Paul was the first to contribute to the JJ Watt Foundation during its Hurricane Harvey Relief efforts which raised $37 million.

Shortly after that, Watt tweeted: “Not many people know, but CP was literally the first celebrity to reach out and donate to the hurricane fundraiser. He had just recently been traded to Houston, called up and said he wanted to help. Very first one. Absolute legend.”

The mission of Watt’s foundation is “allowing middle school kids to enjoy playing sports they may otherwise not be afforded without the funding we provide for uniforms and/or equipment.”

Incidentally, Watt’s Foundation reminds me of Subway Kids & Sports of Arizona, of which HMA played an instrumental role for two decades.  Its mission: “to provide sports equipment, uniforms, registration fees and access to major sporting events for kids that might not otherwise have that opportunity.”

As for Watt, it’s fair to say Arizona has already embraced his arrival.

Written by
at Mar 11, 2021

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