Mike Helton, President of NASCAR, was a fascinating marketing keynote speaker. He talked about many things that as someone who was a big NASCAR fan as a kid, I was never even aware of that were amazing to learn. Two things stand out:
1. NASCAR is intensely focused on relationships and partnerships.
2. NASCAR has always been focused on customers.
It’s no wonder that they are so successful!
The thirty-one degree banking at Daytona built with customer experience in mind – being able to see the whole track at once! I never thought about it before, maybe the best customer experience involves things you don’t even notice.
NASCAR is now the #2 sport on TV only behind only the NFL, 75 million viewers
Mr. Helton believes that access to the drivers is critical piece of the success.
Recently opened a new LA office, NYC office, creating opportunities of NASCAR drivers to be in everyday life and making appearances in show business.
All of the sponsors work closely with licensing and headquarters. Sponsors are critical not only to underwriting the costs, but to other aspects of the sport as well.
NASCAR has always taken advantage of technology. (what a great mantra and it’s true)
NASCAR has racetracks, car owners and drivers who are independent – Mr. Helton expressed amazement that it all works sometimes.
All in all, when I saw Mr. Helton on the agenda, I truly had no idea what to expect, I saw a new side of NASCAR, one that made me appreciate the other side of NASCAR.