3/27/2013 1:00 P.M. ET
Cubs to showcase loyal fans in new ad campaign
By Carrie Muskat / MLB.com
MESA, Ariz. -- Jeff and Jessi Galbraith went to a Cubs game on their second date. They were married last December, and their Indianapolis home is decorated with a Cubs toaster, a Cubs nutcracker, a Cubs trash can and a Cubs gnome. They named their pet lizard "Wrigley," and even have some dirt from the Cubs' home ballpark.
The Weilers of Chicago were a conflicted couple. Adam is a devoted Cubs fan, but his wife is a die-hard Brewers fan. When son Henry was singing, "Take Me Out to the Ballgame," he yelled "Cubbies" without being prompted.
"When he said, 'Cubbies,' I knew he was mine," Adam Weiler said of his son.
David Eagan, a South Side security guard, is so loyal to the Cubs that he had the team logo tattooed onto the back of his head. He didn't stop there. Eagan also had Ron Santo's autograph tattooed onto his head.
"Some people say, 'You're insane,'" Eagan said. "No, I love the Cubs."
That passion and devotion to the Cubs will be showcased in an ad campaign, which will include television spots that begin airing on Monday, just in time for Opening Day.
The Cubs teamed with Schafer Condon Carter agency to launch the campaign. How did they find these people? At the Cubs Convention, of course. Alison Miller, senior director of marketing for the Cubs, said they had a crew walking around the convention wearing T-shirts that said, "Tell Us Your Story." More than 100 people were interviewed.
"The hardest part was narrowing down who we wanted to feature in the campaign this season," Miller said Wednesday.
Do you have a story to tell about why the Cubs are special in your life? Next month, fans will be asked to share videos or photos about their devotion to the Cubs.
"We are finalizing a place on cubs.com where people can go and share their stories with us," Miller said. "And they can either make their own video and post it to cubs.com or post a photo of themselves, whether it be flying the 'W' flag in their backyard or celebrating the Cubs someplace on the road. They can post a photo and then share a short story about their own experience. We are looking throughout the rest of the season to capture more stories from our fans."
When Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts walks around Wrigley Field during games, he is constantly approached by fans who tell him why they are devoted to the team. Now, everyone can share their commitment.
"We love the concept and chose a few fans we want to feature as part of the campaign, but we're excited to see this throughout the whole season and future seasons as to what people tell us as their story," Miller said.
Besides the television spots, there are billboards and print ads in the Chicago area. Miller said they are finalizing one more television ad featuring some college buddies who go to Cubs games on a regular basis. Plus, some of the Cubs' players will share their commitment as well.
"We want them to tell their story, but also tell our half of the story, which is the commitment the organization has to winning and the focus on winning," Miller said of the players.
Do you raise a "W" flag at home after a Cubs win? Did your grandmother take you to your first Cubs game? Do you have a shrine at home devoted to the team? The Cubs want to hear your stories.
"We probably have one of the most passionate and loyal fan bases in all of sports," Miller said, "and we wanted to celebrate and thank them for being such passionate fans."
Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings, and you can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.