Minor League Baseball has selected international sports marketing agency Octagon to develop a long-term content, media, and distribution strategy.
The three-phase partnership has already been in development for months as Octagon has conducted a detailed fan research and digital platform analysis of the affiliated minors’ rights. The latest phase now unfolding involves MiLB and Octagon going to market to seek new media distribution opportunities.
“We are committed to staying ahead of the content curve and investing in the necessary resources to best position MiLB to drive meaningful fan engagement and overall growth in a hyper-competitive space,” said David Wright, MiLB chief marketing and commercial officer.
The Octagon tie-up comes as a particularly delicate time for MiLB. The organization this past year reversed an attendance slide, and continues to boost its Hispanic outreach program, Copa de la Diversión.
But the affiliated minors are also currently in the midst of a deeply fractious negotiation with Major League Baseball on a new Professional Baseball Agreement. MLB is seeking a dramatic overhaul that would reduce the number of clubs by a quarter and impose broad realignment and affiliation changes. MLB’s proposal has been blasted by the US Congress on a broad bipartisan basis, with Vermont Senator and Democratic candidate for President Bernie Sanders most recently attacking the league’s plans.
MiLB, however, enjoys a level of overall game volume and geographic breadth unrivaled by any other US sports property
“There is no US sports property comparable to Minor League Baseball. With more than 6,700 games and 16,000 hours of live content annually available to fans, MiLB’s reach and live content breadth is in a league of its own,” said Daniel Cohen, senior vice president of Octagon’s global media rights consulting division.