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Double down with the econ of Cinco de Mayo and Kentucky Derby

Two festive party occasions share the calendar on Saturday, making this an apt week for a variety of marketing stories.

Cinco de Mayo and Kentucky Derby

Saturday is a big day for events worth an economic preview.

The Kentucky Derby, in which three-year-old Thoroughbreds will race for the 138th time, also is a decent peg for taking a look at the equine and racing industries in your state.  For such a niche interest — and one that is finding trouble competing with casinos for wagering dollars — horse racing still is fairly prevalent and gets a decent share of media attention, as this ESPN portal attests.  It’s had some bad press in recent years with the breakdown of popular racers, and the recent cancellation of the HBO miniseries “Luck” following the deaths of horses used in the show — but it’s held up and even joined the 21st century.

I had no idea, for example, that legal, remote wagering was available, and it might come as a surprise to some of your readers, too — but that is what TwinSpires.com, a Churchill Downs company, appears to be offering at its online site.  They’re even pitching a $100 sign-up bonus to new members.  They even have a mobile app for live viewing and wagering on races in the U.S. and United Kingdom — I am floored.  What a story for reporters who cover technology, casinos and gambling or business-of-sports beats.  Elsewhere, tracks offer similar apps so on-site patrons can bet without walking to a wagering window.  What are the smartphone offerings at your local track, and if none, why  not?  How are the tracks doing in attracting a new generation of fans?

Meanwhile, Cinco de Mayo serendipitously falls on a Saturday this year, and marketeers appear to be making the most of it.  The holiday increasingly is celebrated in the United States, and not just by people with Hispanic heritage — though you can opt to take a look at the growth of consumer marketing to this demographic; here’s my previous blog post on the topic.

Here’s a recent take on the same subject by Forbes, which reports that chicken-processor Tyson Foods, the Tabsco brand and Jose Cuervo margarita mix have come up with a joint promotion.  Marketing Daily reports on the same promotion, plus a plan by Dos Equis beer to beef up its “the most intersting man” campaign and offer a beers of Mexico sample pack in time for the celebration.  And Progressive Grocer cites recent survey findings that “Shoppers want a spicy Cinco de Mayo.”  

Last year, a restaurantuer quoted in Nation’s Restaurant News called Cinco de Mayo his Black Friday – so in addition to a stroll around the supermarket, you might want to check in with area bars, bistros and party-supply shops about the effect of the holiday on their business.  This year, are joint fiesta/Derby viewing parties planned at clubs and taverns?  Check daily deals sites for any tie-ins, too.

And from the too-bad-we-aren’t-in-Costa Rica department, Nature Air, a Costa Rican carrier, is offering $5 flights on the ‘fifth day of the fifth month,’ on domestic flights to 13 of that country’s cities it serves.

 

About the Author

Veteran financial writer Melissa Preddy served as a business writer, editor and columnist for The Detroit News from 1995 to 2008, is a Michigan-based freelance journalist. She now works as a writer and editor for a medical research unit of the University of Michigan Medical School. Follow her daily posts. | E-mail: Melissa Preddy

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