FOX Promotes “UFC on FOX: Velasquez vs Dos Santos” During MLB Game

September 5, 2011

Last week, UFC and Fox officially announced their first “UFC on FOX” network event on 11/12. This weekend – just over two months before the day of the event – FOX began it’s promotional campaign during the Red Sox vs Rangers “MLB Game of the Week” on Saturday afternoon.

The in-game promo occurred in the 5th inning of the Red Sox vs Rangers game, which was indicative of a few things. One, it showed that the message to promote the event was given from the top FOX executives (top-down) and it would heavily push the UFC events in the enthusiastic manner which they suggested ever since signing the TV deal with the UFC.  The other key point here is that the lengthy promo not only promoted the 11/12 event, but it also included a PPV promo for UFC 135, mentioning both headliners John “Bones” Jones and Quinton Rampage” Jackson. Via MMAJunkie:

“We’re jumping on this thing and making a big a deal out of it as we can,” Fox Sports president Eric Shanks said today during a conference call announcing the event’s headliner, a heavyweight title fight between champ Cain Velasquez and challenger Junior Dos Santos. “Guaranteed, we’ll be promoting this across all of our sports and all of our entertainment properties leading up until the 12th.”

 

The second promo was a 10 second commercial spot during the game for the 11/12 event and mostly featured highlights of Cain Velasquez and Junior Dos Santos, ending with a shot displaying the title of the event, the date, and the UFC on FOX logo.

 

We were skeptical at first of how much FOX was really going to push the UFC , but after watching the first UFC on FOX promo during the press conference and this weekends efforts, it shouldn’t surprise anyone when FOX starts to run promos during NFL games in about a week.  Typically, those Sunday NFL games get great media coverage and high viewership numbers which surpass the majority of MLB games. The UFC will be looking to capitalize on the exposure FOX will provide in the next couple of months.

7 Responses to “FOX Promotes “UFC on FOX: Velasquez vs Dos Santos” During MLB Game”

  1. Code Master on September 5th, 2011 7:06 PM

    Both the UFC and Fox appear extremely savvy in this merger.

    PPV has a way of marginalizing the popularity of fighting sports–but a HW championship on FREE TV hearkens back to the old Friday night fights–where you could see a title match for free.

    Zuffa made exactly the right and best decision with this fight, and Fox executives must be grinning from ear to ear to get such a fight.

    Much as I like boxing and Pacquio, I believe his fight later in the evening will pale by comparison to the excitement of an MMA heavyweight title fight–and at a much higher dollar expense for fans.

    Even though Dana White and Fox executives claim the timing is conincidental for the first Fox broadcast of the UFC, make no mistake: The UFC and Fox are going head to head and toe to toe with boxing–and inviting fan comparisons. Fight fans already have the Pacquio fight on their calendars, so Fox and the UFC are guaranteed a lot of eyeballs.

  2. Code Master on September 5th, 2011 7:15 PM

    BTW: By ‘merger’ I meant merger of commercial interests, not a legal merger of businesses.

  3. Diego on September 6th, 2011 6:32 AM

    CM,

    If the UFC is inviting a fan comparison between MMA and boxing I think they picked the wrong boxing event. Pacquiao-Marquez is shaping up to be one of the most exciting fights in boxing and both fighters can hold their own with any mixed-martial artist.

    Pacquiao is also the undisputed king of PPV; any other boxer that the UFC wants to go against I would say it’s a slam dunk, but Pac-man is a different breed. I’m not sure why they are trying to go up against an all action fighter like him – that’s the one move in this whole thing that I wonder about. It is smart of the UFC-Fox to make sure that the UFC card is over and done before the Top Rank main event.

  4. Michael on September 6th, 2011 8:45 AM

    How much do the Paquiao PPV and the UFC PPV cost in the US? I hear UFC costs around 50$?

  5. Jason Cruz on September 6th, 2011 9:10 AM

    @Michael Pac-Man’s PPVs are usually $64.99 (for HD), $54.99 (non-HD) and UFC PPVs are $10 less: $54.99 and $44.99.

  6. Michael on September 6th, 2011 9:24 AM

    Thanks Jason. Man, that’s a lot of money…

  7. BrainSmasher on September 6th, 2011 11:10 AM

    I do believe the UFC when they say it was coincidence. If they wanted to compete they would have over laped the boxing event. There is no way in hell a free HW title fight on Fox wouldnt have take away a few people who wanted to save $60. It would have cost the UFC some possible ratings but it would have cost Top Ranked millions possibly. Either way it wouldnt have made a huge difference in the FOX ratings either way.

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