Sport Chek takes little leagues to the big ice

The brand recently suprised youth hockey leagues with games in the Air Canada Centre and Scotiabank Saddledome arenas.

There’s no sense having seats in a stadium sit empty when they’re supposed to be filled with screaming hockey devotees. Sport Chek recently spent some time in vacant Air Canada Centre and Scotiabank Saddledome arenas, where the Toronto Maple Leafs and Calgary Flames are meant to play, to surprise young hockey players with a “Big League Experience.”

The surprise outings (which involved youth being dropped off at the stadiums where they could prep in the locker rooms, sing the national anthem on the ice and play a full game of hockey) were documented on film to create another digital asset to add to Sport Chek’s collection.

“One of our goals for the end of 2012 and moving into 2013 is to create a lot more branded digital content,” Frederick Lecoq, VP marketing, FGL Sports, tells MiC. “To do this, we need to ensure our real-life activations, like the Big League Experience, are fully integrated with an engaging upside that lives online through social media, digital and video.”

Traffik and North Strategic worked in collaboration to bring the experiential stunt to life, and the video will be promoted through advertising on Facebook. Sport Chek is honing in on people that “love and miss hockey or who are just looking for a little inspiration to find their personal best,” adds Lecoq. “Even though the NHL is currently on hold, minor league hockey players are still getting up at 6 a.m. to head to their hockey practices. Hockey is still alive and well.”

“As it stands right now, we’re currently looking into similar initiatives down the line,” he says. “Since the Toronto and Calgary events were so well received, we’re investigating other possible markets that could house a Big League Experience.”