EP60: Jesse Cole - Fans First! Running a Baseball Team in a Yellow Tuxedo!
Release Date: 01/22/2020
Make Your Mark
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Make Your Mark
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Make Your Mark
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Make Your Mark
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Make Your Mark
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Make Your Mark
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Dancing grandmas? Baseball players skydiving to their positions? Just a normal day at the office for one of the most exciting, interesting, and big-picture thinking owners in sports, and my guest on the Mark Your Mark podcast, Jesse Cole. Oh, did I mention the yellow tuxedo and top hat that he wears more often than not?
“I found out only 200 fans were coming to the games, and the team had been there for seven years. I made ten phone calls out to the community. The first seven phone calls no one had even heard of the team, the next two wouldn’t work with us, and the last one hung up on me. That was my first day in the office.”
Jesse has completely transformed how baseball fans experience the game at the ballpark, and he’s just scratched the surface! If you stopped going to games for any reason, you have to hear this episode!
“As a kid I never would’ve said yeah one day I want to be the owner of a baseball team. I just wanted to play the game. I was a kid who was hungry, who was in love with practicing, playing batting practice with my dad, fielding ground balls.”
Jesse and his Bananas will make you laugh, his team will make you cheer, and you’ll have a great time watching baseball again! This was a rollicking episode to record, laughs at every turn, and lessons learned throughout! Happy listening!
“I believe if you aren’t upsetting anyone you aren’t doing anything. We embrace criticism, we’re ok with it. That means we are doing something that’s interesting, different, and exciting. If you play it safe you’re in trouble.”
“I tore my shoulder Junior year in college, and that was the end of that. In that moment it was realizing that you’ll never do what you always thought you would do the rest of your life. I broke down and was emotional, I thought about the advice my dad gave me with staying positive, and it was tough, and at that moment I had no idea what I was gonna do. But also was the best thing that ever happened to me.”
“I learned then that I fell in love with playing the game, but I didn’t love watching the game. When you get injured and you have to sit and watch the game you realize the game wasn’t as executing as when you used to play.”
“I heard over and over again that people didn’t like baseball, they didn’t want to take their company to a baseball game. They all thought it was too long, too slow and too boring. After the calls, and meeting with potential fans, I realized we could no longer be a baseball team. I called the team’s owner and told him we can’t be a baseball team, it needs to be like a circus. Our players need to have choreographed dances, we need to have grandma beauty pageants, I need to get in the dunk tank, we need to have Salute to Underwear nights, we need to make it ridiculous.”
“We stand against that boring game of baseball that so many people hate, and that we are going to try to make non-stop fun and exciting. We are standing for the fan. The fan deserves the game back. It’s not just about the players, the money, the owners revenue, it’s about the fan experience.”
Make sure to catch the Savannah Bananas live starting on May 28, 2020 vs. the Macon Bacon! Go here to get all the info you would need about the team and my favorite team owner Jesse Cole! https://thesavannahbananas.com/ If you see him tell him I say hiya!
Learn how to put your company’s customers into fans with Jesse’s Fans First University https://fansfirstu.com/. His model truly works, make sure you give this a look, you’ll be thrilled you did!
Some Topics we talk about in this episode:
- 2.35 - Welcome
- 3:00 - The man in the yellow tux
- 4:25 - A shared passion for the fans first experience
- 5:10 - 42 page spread in entrepreneur magazine
- 6:00 - The spark for baseball
- 7:00 - A new perspective of baseball
- 8:00 - The injury
- 9:35 - That’s where it all changed
- 11:45 - Just start!
- 12:05 - I fell in love with the idea of getting people excited
- 13:35 - The internship
- 14:50 - I never questioned what I am doing
- 15:10 - People didn’t like baseball so I changed that
- 15:40 - We need to make the game a circus
- 16:55 - Our game is not a game, it’s a show
- 17:15 - Measuring the success in moments
- 18:10 - The best show in sports
- 19:45 - Proposing marriage at the Gastonia game
- 21:25 - Taking over in Savannah
- 23:00 - We embrace criticism!
- 23:20 - This is who we are and it’s outrageous
- 25:40 - What do you stand for? We stand for the fan.
- 26:15 - Making it interactive, against the traditionalists of baseball
- 28:40 - Already a waitlist for 2021
- 30:50 - The idea book
- 32:00 - We put ourselves in the customer’s shoes and go undercover
- 33:45 - Test things and consider your next at bat
- 36:00 - Fans first experience workshops
- 36:30 - Your fans are your biggest marketers
- 36:45 - PFT - Perfect Fan Testimonial
- 40:45 - Bringing fan first to the world
- 42:20 - What’s the leadership style of the post office?
- 42:50 - Hit Your Mark
- 43:10 - Nomar Garciaparra and Pedro Martinez
- 43:50 - First time booed on a podcast!
- 46:15 - How I want to be remembered
- 47:00 - Thousands of thank you letters
- 47:45 - Caller ID Unknown was Simon Sinek
- 49:30 - Play the long game, don’t reach out to ask
- 50:40 - The human connection
How to get involved
- Be sure to connect with me on Social Media @MarkMoyerCoach and go to my website, www.markmoyer.com to get access to the tips and strategies that my coaching clients get directly.
- If you would like to be a guest on the Make Your Mark podcast and/or know someone else who has either been an athlete, in a role within the sports industry, or a military veteran, and have made a successful transition into a new role, I’d love to hear from you! Just send me an email [email protected] and we’ll discuss!
- If you would like more information on how I can get you unstuck and moving forward with your transition, let’s talk. We can see whether it makes sense to work directly with me, or I can give you other options, but don’t let your transition wait another day, let’s connect!
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How are YOU going to Make Your Mark today? Go get ‘em!