Retail Merchandiser - March/April 2017 - 38
PROFESSIONAL BULL RIDERS INC.
gives fans a chance to
follow bull riders and check standings
throughout an entire season, building
interest and creating a solid fan base
"People are starting to get more connected to the bull riders," says John So-
higian, vice president
of consumer products
for PBR. "Through
vignettes on CBS, increased media outreach, and a concerted
effort to increase the riders' social and
digital presence, we have more ways to
tell their stories."
With all of the excitement generated
by popular bull riders, it's easy to forget
that there is another group of stars for
fans to follow as well: the bulls. "Without a doubt the animal athletes of the
PBR are every bit as part of the show
as the riders," Sohigian says. "And they
know they are performing. It's fun to
see a bull kick his legs in the air and
acknowledge the crowd after a ride."
The amped-up presentation of the
sport also keeps fans engaged. Between
rides, loud rock music is played as
announcers offer commentary on the
various riders. And during timeouts or
commercial breaks, Flint Rasmussen,
PBR's version of a rodeo clown, works
the crowd and entertains the audience
with humorous bits about himself,
crowd members and the riders.
It all adds up to a fascinating mix of
sports, entertainment, rock music and
pyrotechnics. "In this day and age, you
have ever shortening attention spans,"
Giangola notes. "PBR is eight-second