Lowe’s director of sports marketing Adam Jacobs admits the home improvement brand isn’t endemic when it comes to the NFL. It’s not like the Gatorade players drink during timeouts, the Microsoft Surface tablets coaches consult on the sidelines, the Bose headphones they use to call plays or the Bud Light fans drink at home or in stadiums.
That’s why integrating the Official Home Improvement Sponsor of the NFL through activations and commercials locally and nationally has been so much fun this season—Lowe’s first in such a role.
“It has been an outstanding year,” Jacobs said. “I think the NFL platform has been a great platform as a key element in our marketing strategy that has evolved to grow our consumer base and deepen the connection with them. … We feel there’s a lot of synergy with the NFL fan base and our fan base.”
Lowe’s, which joined the NFL’s expansive sponsorship portfolio on January 22, 2019, was able to get its first activations and messaging in time for Super Bowl LIII in and around the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in Atlanta, coincidentally where rivals Home Depot are headquartered.
The Fortune 50 company founded in 1946 continued its activations throughout the 2019-20 season, particularly at the NFL’s tentpole events, including the NFL Draft and NFL Combine, and will be present at Super Bowl LIV in Miami. The company is launching its “Bring It Home” campaign, encouraging fans to visit their stores to gear up with supplies for the big game on February 2.
“In its first full year of our partnership, Lowe’s has demonstrated best-in-class activation as the Official Home Improvement Retail Sponsor of the NFL,” said Tracie Rodburg, senior vice-president of sponsorship management at the NFL. “In addition to their activation at league tent-poles, Lowe’s has been a valuable partner to the communities through volunteer efforts and donations as part of the NFL’s Huddle for 100 platform and team partnerships. Additionally, Lowe’s has provided tools, materials, and safety equipment to support the build of stages and fan experience structures, which are endemic to our events.”
In association with the campaign, Lowe’s is doing what it does best: build. The company is erecting Lowe’s Hometown, an interactive NFL-themed neighborhood featuring 32 custom-built dwellings of each of the league’s teams, knowing that fans from all around the United States and world will be present, not just those of the Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers.
“Lowe’s Hometown is an opportunity to engage fans that make their way through the Super Bowl Experience,” Jacobs said. “This neighborhood of very unique dwellings won’t only have team logos but will include featured characteristics of teams, hometowns and fans while adding layers of interactivity to them. We can showcase our vendor partners as well.
“It’s unique. It’s something that fans will enjoy so much so they’ll want to share with friends and family who don’t have the opportunity to make it to Miami.”
While Lowe’s will be disassembling its Hometown village after Super Bowl LIV, the company will be leaving a lasting impression on the Miami community; something it did in Atlanta around last year’s Super Bowl.
In conjunction with Rebuilding Together, more than 200 volunteers from local organizations will provide home repairs for nine families in Miami’s West Coconut Grove neighborhood. Buffalo Bills running back Frank Gore, who grew up in Coconut Grove, will headline a group of NFL players also lending a helping hand.
“It is incredibly important for us to make sure we leave a lasting, positive impact in the market,” Jacobs said. “While this is only our first full year as an NFL sponsor, we’re celebrating our 14th year with Kickoff to Rebuild. I can’t underestimate the importance of bringing attention to safe and affordable housing. That’s what these partnerships and our community activities are all about.”