“It’s not what you know, it’s who you know that really matters in this industry”
We kicked off our third weekend of MSBA (hard to believe) with a tour of “the next big stadium” in the NY/NJ area: the Prudential Center. A group of us left from our dorm site, EHS, and decided to venture by foot to try a different train route (adventurous, right?). Through the hot sun on a beautiful day, we took a walk through Central Park to reach the subway in order to get to New York Penn Station. There, we met up with the rest of the crew to board NJ Transit and set off to Newark. Upon arrival, we took a brisk walk to the Prudential Center. We received a lovely tour of the exterior of the building from our very own Lorne Segall (we literally walked for 15 minutes until we found the door). After a few tries we found the correct entrance, just a short crosswalk away. While waiting at the crosswalk, I was approached by a man who asked what company we all work for. I responded by saying that we do not work for anyone, but rather, are part of the Manhattan Sports Business Academy. After telling me that he was looking for a better job, he complimented the group’s attire and left. Laughing about the matter, we approached the Prudential Center and proceeded to walk right through the security gates, gathering in an exclusive entrance to be greeted by Ned Luke, the Marketing Partnership Coordinator for the New Jersey Devils.
Ned started the tour with a treat. We were granted access to the main floor of the arena, seeing up close how sitting courtside feels! We proceeded to get a floor-by-floor experience of the place and view all of the different club/box seat areas. From the platinum lounges to the “Fire” and “Ice” lounges, the acoustics of the Prudential Center cannot be beat. That was one upside of the building; it was built to contain sound. So the next time you want a loud fan experience, you’re better off going to Newark rather than any other arena in the greater NY/NJ area. At the end of the tour we sat down with Matthew Zalkowitz, VP of Marketing Strategy, and Adam Davis, Executive VP of Corporate Sponsorships, to gain some first-hand knowledge and advice from two key role-players. The message was clear to all of us: it’s not what you know, it’s who you know that really matters in this industry. Adam talked to us about the sales aspect and how integrity plays a big role in building partnerships, and more importantly, relationships. One of the most important things to remember is that sports business is all about networking and building lasting relationships. Matthew spoke about different marketing tactics and how basic ticket sales have fallen into a marketing category in recent years.
Gaining all of this information was vital to us and really completed this long journey. With three weeks in the bag, it has become like clockwork: speakers during the week – events on Fridays. However, with each week, the experience is different, and this was no exception. We finished our Friday relaxing like always, experiencing the lovely city of New York. I can’t wait to see how week four will be as our MSBA crew continues to get closer and form one big happy family.