4 March Madness Marketing Campaigns To Inspire You

March Madness Marketing Campaigns

Popular sporting events, seasonal holidays, or national events can be helpful content pillars to inspire your marketing efforts and spark a connection with your audience.

March Madness is one of the most anticipated sports seasons of the year, and an excellent example of a sporting event many organizations focus marketing campaigns on. The season runs for a whole month and captures the attention of nearly 11 million people, making it easy to see why brands use this seasonal event to their advantage. 

So how exactly are brands using March Madness to create engaging and impactful content this year, and how can you do it, too? In this article, we’ll provide inspiration and ideas for designing your own seasonal campaign with examples from genuine brands. And in true March Madness fashion, we’ll predict how far they’ll go on our bracket.

Jersey Mike’s rewrites an anthem.

This amusing campaign shows Danny Devito training Jersey Mike’s employees in the art of meat slicing and sandwich making. There’s an apparent sporting angle, shown through Jersey Mike employees doing pull-ups and Danny sporting a rather fetching whistle, all of which feed into the March Madness theme.

The campaign is also audibly captivating and witty, using the instantly recognizable song’ eye of the tiger’ and replacing the lyrics with a more sandwich-themed ‘arm of the slicer’ lyrics—genius.

We found this advertisement charming, original, and fun, and scored them a spot in the Final Four.

Pizza Hut serves up nostalgia.

Pizza Hut, the “Official Pizza of March Madness” has brought back a fan-favorite toy from the 20th century for its March Madness campaign; its Mini Basketballs.

For a limited time, customers can order the black and red mini basketballs, emblazoned with the company’s slogan: ‘Nobody Out Pizzas the Hut’ for $7 through the Pizza Hut website and app. The mini basketballs pair perfectly with pizza orders during the tournament, featuring an interactive hoop in the pizza box for customers to get into the basketball action at home.

This campaign is a nostalgic, family-friendly, and delicious way for Pizza Hut to engage with its audience for the March Madness season; landing them in the Elite Eight.


Capital One stacks the bench with celebrities.

In this Capital One campaign, we see yet another fun remake of a famous song, rewritten to fit the theme of March Madness. Are Capital One and Jersey Mike’s employing the same marketing team? Well, if they aren’t, they’re definitely on the same wavelength.

Capital One has taken the opportunity to promote its venture card and its A-list-worthy creative budget. The campaign has an all-star cast consisting of Samuel L Jackson, Spike Lee, Charles Barkley Jackson, Willie Nelson, Jennifer Garner, sportscaster Jim Nantz, and basketball icon Magic Johnson… (takes a breath).

In the advertisement, we see our celebrities taking an all-American road trip, singing the classic Willie Nelson song ‘On the road again’ which they have topically adapted to; “The life I love is watching b-ball with my friends – and I can’t wait to get on the road again.”

This campaign has a high production quality, and we do really like Jennifer Garner. However, the storyline was a bit of a miss and knocked this campaign out in the Sweet 16.

LG Raises Awareness Using Student Athletes

LG Electronics USA uses its March Madness campaign to highlight the importance of mental health and wellness among student-athletes with its “Game 4 Good” campaign. The campaign brings together some of the biggest names in college basketball to raise awareness of the importance of mental health by sharing athlete stories, highlighting charitable organizations, and donating on behalf of student-athletes to their chosen resources to support mental health.

LG created short-form videos for each student-athlete involved in the campaign and repurposed that content to share across their website and social media channels.

LG used the topic of March Madness to demonstrate their values as a company and to give back and connect with their younger audience. Well done, LG, you’re going to the National Championship.

Feeling inspired?

If you’d like some more March Madness inspiration, check out the six slam dunk marketing campaign ideas we covered in 2021.

Whether you decide to keep it casual and remake a world-famous song with an all-star cast, bring back a nostalgic hit toy or use March Madness as an opportunity to raise awareness for an important cause – we can all agree that popular sporting events, seasonal holidays, or national events serve as helpful content pillars to inspire your marketing efforts and spark a connection with your audience.

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