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Brokerage Makes Big Play as New York Jets Sponsor

Zack Lane/New York Jets, LLC

Whether the New York Jets go big or go home in the NFL’s 2013 season, every game they play is a touchdown for one real estate brokerage.

New Jersey-based Weichert, REALTORS®, has been named the official real estate company of the Jets, which means it stands to get its advertising in front of the team’s 7 million diehard fans — and beyond. The deal will give Weichert signage prominent display at all Jets home games, including spreads on in-stadium TVs. Weichert ads will also be displayed on the highly trafficked NewYorkJets.com Web site, and the company will sponsor the team’s “Jets Talk LIVE” weekly Web program. Radio ads for the company will air during ESPN’s coverage of Jets games.

“Weichert is the largest privately owned real estate company in New Jersey, and the company’s commitment to excellence is similar to ours,” says Marc Riccio, senior vice president of the Jets, whose stadium is in East Rutherford, N.J.

This go-round, though, the Jets’ success could have a big impact on Weichert’s. The team is likely wondering how far they’ll get without star quarterback Mark Sanchez, who’s out with a shoulder injury. But the path to the playoffs started out with a bang this year: The Jets clipped the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to win their season opener Sunday. That bodes well for Weichert.

“The team’s 7 million fans are among the NFL’s most loyal and engaged,” says Larry Mueller, Weichert’s vice president of marketing. “We look forward to the opportunity to share the strength of our real estate expertise with everyone associated with the Jets.”

The company has quite a lot to offer, too. Since its inception in 1969, Weichert has grown from a single office into a national full-service brokerage, offering mortgages and home and title insurance in addition to residential and commercial real estate. The exposure from the Jets could spread the company’s image as a one-stop real estate shop far and wide.

The Jets deal was born from a smaller agreement last year for Weichert to place banner ads on the Jets’ Web site, Mueller says. “We were pleased with the results and had planned to continue that this year. As discussions began, the Jets approached us about expanding our relationship to include other advertising opportunities.

“We are always searching for new, different, and exciting ways to bring the Weichert brand to our customer base,” Mueller continues. “We felt that partnering with one of the NFL’s most popular franchises — one with millions of dedicated fans in our core market — was a tremendous opportunity for Weichert.”

So the company and the team began talks this summer about expanding commercial ties, realizing that their ad goals and promotional ideas were closely aligned, Mueller says. They hammered out the details over the last few weeks, culminating in the idea of making Weichert the official real estate sponsor of the Jets.

“Our sponsorship has allowed us to create a new advertising campaign, which focuses on football themes and brings the Weichert brand to consumers in a new way that is both fun and engaging,” Mueller says.

Weichert isn’t the first real estate company to score on the backs of an NFL team, though. “This is not unprecedented,” says NFL spokesman Greg Aiello. “Sixteen NFL teams have sponsorships with partners in the real estate category.”

Various RE/MAX offices, for example, advertise with the Indianapolis Colts, Kansas City Chiefs, and Washington Redskins, among other teams. Coldwell Banker scored deals with the Jacksonville Jaguars and St. Louis Rams.

But now that the business terms have been ironed out, it’s game time. And since Weichert is betting big on advertising with the Jets, does the company expect the team to go all the way to the playoffs?

“The Jets started the season strong with a thrilling win, and we look forward to many more exciting games,” Mueller says. “But in terms of the playoffs, we like to see all of the local teams do well.”

Graham Wood

Graham Wood is a senior editor for REALTOR® Magazine. He can be reached at gwood@realtors.org.

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