Dreaming of Championships
Posted by: Bill Bolen, Wednesday, February 27, 3:16 p.m. ET
If I have not already met you at one of our recent events I hope to do so soon….my name is Bill Bolen and I am President of your Atlanta Dream! The fast paced effort to get our team launched for tipoff this summer has not left me as much time for blogging as I would like to do in the future, but the events of this past weekend finally led me to take a few minutes and capture some random thoughts for you….
What happened last weekend? My daughter Ansley’s 5th-7th grade basketball team won their league championship tournament! While I know most of you were not watching the Harrison Youth Basketball League standings closely, this of course was a big day for the Bolen family. But there is a link to the Dream - watching our daughter’s team this season also reminded me of some of the key success factors for our Atlanta Dream that will help us achieve champion status on and off the court:
Teamwork – Our championship team had some great players who often led us in scoring, but throughout the season everyone involved in coaching the girls emphasized the importance of teamwork and did not emphasize one individual as the key to our success. In the championship game it paid off when one player who was not our leading scorer stepped up out of the blue to score a ton of points to lead the team to victory. In much the same way, our success here in Atlanta will depend on a team effort beyond just the obvious stars on the basketball court. You are important to our success whether you own courtside season tickets or can only drive down from Knoxville or Charlotte for a few games. You are important to us whether you are a local basketball team that comes out for a group outing or a local nonprofit that we partner with to help succeed in achieving our shared goals. You are important to us whether you live in Henry County or Cherokee County or right in the heart of the city! Team support must come from all parts of the community and region for us to succeed, and we will be seeking your support as part of our team effort!
Character – There were no bad attitudes on our championship team, and we have strived to build the same culture here at the Dream. Owner Ron Terwilliger and I stressed this issue during our interviews with potential coaching candidates, and Marynell Meadors agrees strongly with this approach. I think you will find that the basketball team we have assembled to date is a great group of athletes who are hard workers and women of good character who will be great representatives of the Dream. I think you will also find that our team staff reflects the same strong character traits as our team on the court. No one is perfect, but we have made an effort both for our staff and our players to bring together top quality professionals who represent us well.
Fun – Our championship team nickname was the Timberwolves, but we joked that it should be the Gigglewolves because our team was notorious for cracking each other up even in the middle of tense games. Our staff has fun working together and our focus is on you as fans having a lot of fun when you come out to our games this summer. We can be serious about winning championships without being boring or dull! I am very focused on ensuring that your experience as fans this summer is fun and entertaining, and I will want to hear from you if we are not achieving that goal!
Energy – Our championship team was known for a fast pace of play and relentless energy through all four quarters of the game. I think you will find the same is true both on the court with Marynell’s approach to the game, but also off the court with our staff’s approach to spreading the word about our team. We are all over the place – community events, basketball games, office buildings, neighborhoods, you name it! And we need your energy as fans of the team too – every person you tell about the Dream helps us spread the word and eventually reach that next family that wants season tickets this summer! Thanks for your energetic support of us so far, and keep that energy going!
These are not the only building blocks for success of course, but are just a few thoughts that I thought were worth emphasizing as we look ahead to our exciting inaugural season. Please continue to promote the Atlanta Dream to your friends and neighbors so that we can push closer to our season ticket goals and build the foundation for our success! Call 404-604-2626 to speak with an account executive or visit www.atlantadream.net and do your part to build our championship team by becoming a season ticket holder and getting your friends to join the team as well! We are looking forward to seeing you at our home opener May 23 at Philips Arena against Bill Laimbeer’s Detroit Shock!
Yes We Can!
Posted by: Paige Blankenship, Tuesday, January 22, 2:00 p.m. ET
Let me start out by saying, “YES WE CAN!"
I am so excited to be a part of this new WNBA Atlanta team. I have worked for several professional sports organizations and I truly believe that we have what it takes to be successful -- and it all starts with YOU, the FAN! Our fans have been FANtastic. An outpour of support has rained upon us and our ticket sales are just one way to measure the support of our fans. We are doing fantastic in selling tickets, but we can always do better! Please help us pass along the word that we need ALL of your support and need each of you to BUY SEASON TICKETS!
Behind the scenes, we are excited about the launch of our new team. We are working non-stop to help bring ATLANTA the best WNBA team in the league. As the VP of Marketing, I oversee our advertising efforts, business development, media relations, community relations, website and game day entertainment. My staff is in place and we are brainstorming and activating programs. Every day is different and there is always an endless list of “things to do.” I am extremely excited to be a part of such a wonderful front office staff, and I can promise you this: if you come to the home opener on May 23rd at Philips Arena—you WON’T be disappointed. Be sure to guarantee that you have a seat there—purchase your season tickets today!
Join the Club
Posted by: Michele Beagle, Tuesday, January 15, 11:02 a.m. ET
Hello everyone! My name is Michele Beagle. I am the coordinator for Club 13. For those of you who don’t know Club 13 is group of volunteers who are committed to helping promote, market, and sell the team through their own personal networks, such as co-workers, colleagues, church groups, neighborhoods, sporting events, and family. Club 13 members work hard to get qualified referrals to me, and it is my job to close the sale for them. We have great prizes at various tiers to reward the members for their efforts and hard work.
I am so excited about my role with the team and Club 13. We had our first Club 13 meeting since my being on board, January 10, 2008. We held the meeting at our offices downtown. As I drove home, I was thrilled as I thought of all of the enthusiasm and ideas that were shared at the meeting. I met only a portion of the Club 13 members at the meeting and these members are a huge part of the driving force behind the success of our ticket sales. Each member that I met was so excited and wanted to make this team a success.
Allison Fillmore, VP of Ticket Sales, spoke on what a great job that Club 13 is doing. At the time of the meeting, Club 13 was at 98 season tickets sold. That is AMAZING, but more amazingly, the very next day, we sold six more thanks to the members who left the meeting determined to get us over the 100 mark! Paige Blankenship, VP of Marketing, spoke to the group about the upcoming launch date event, event etiquette, and how thankful the organization is for a devoted group such as Club 13. Carla McGhee was present at the meeting and she spoke to the group. Carla is such a cheerleader. It was a treat for the group to hear her speak and have the opportunity to speak with her before and after the meeting. WNBA Atlanta could not ask for a more qualified Ambassador than Carla! Tameka Garrett, Manager of Community Relations as well as the sales staff were present for any questions or concerns.
We have also had three new members join at the meeting. These members have already purchased their tickets from a Club 13 referral and wanted to help by volunteering. AMAZING! It was a beneficial meeting not only for me to meet all of the volunteers, but for the Club 13 members to see that while we are inside of our brick and mortar each day trying to fit all of the pieces of the puzzle together, they are the face of our team in the community. Right now, Club 13 is an extension of our sales team, our marketing team, and our communications department. For that we are truly thankful!
I am readily available and eager to assist with the promotion and success of this team through Club 13. If at any time there are any questions, comments, or concerns please feel free to contact me directly at 404-954-6646; or by email at Michele.email@example.com.
We are always looking for good strong devoted volunteers. If you feel you would be interested in joining Club 13 please feel free to contact me and get signed up. Also, if you have spoken to a Club 13 member and need help with your ticket purchases, please contact me directly.
WNBA Atlanta Embraces Community
Posted by: Tameka Garrett, Monday, January 7, 1:12 p.m. ET
Hi guys! My name is Tameka Garrett and I am the Community Relations Manager for the WNBA Atlanta team. Wow, two weeks on the job, and I am as busy as ever.
The community has been so receptive to the team and of course that makes my job as Community Relations Manager important with a host of opportunities. It is important that the community understands that we are here for them and I have been in touch with many folks already, from the Boys and Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta to community groups in Chattanooga. We are moving and pushing forward.
I think the greatest part of my job is to help get the word out there about the team. Our head coach is making appearances in the community as well as working hard at getting the best coaches and players on the team. I am so excited and my days are never the same. For example, tomorrow I have a meeting with Carla McGhee, an Olympian and former WNBA player. It is great to be a part of a team that what happens off the court is as just important as what happens on the court.
I want to be sure that this is a regional team! Not just representing ATL but Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama, the Carolinas. Did you know we are the only WNBA team in the Southeast area?? Shout out to all of the former WNBA players in the area. If you played for the WNBA and would like to join our network, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Soon, we will be hosting networking opportunities for former WNBA players in the area.
Okay, my phone is ringing now... Wow, it’s Coach… Better go…
If you also would like request player appearances or auction items for events coming up, please fax a formal request to Attn: Tameka Garrett, 404-954-6666.
Something New, Something Different
Posted by: Jason Erbesfield, Wednesday, December 26, 11:15 p.m. ET
Atlanta is a great town. No matter where I travel, no matter where I go, I always long to get back to Atlanta. Whether it's halfway across the world on the beaches of Tel Aviv or just a few hours away in sunny Florida, Atlanta is the place I call home. It's truly the best city in the world and a place I always look forward to getting back to.
There's something special about Atlanta… something words just can't properly explain. We've got great weather. Southern hospitality and charm. Faces from around the world. Atlanta is a big city yet still maintains that feel of a charming, warm and friendly small town. Sure, we've got a lot of transplants in this city, but that's what makes Atlanta so great -- you get to meet people from all walks of life from all kinds of places.
Atlanta is also home to all kinds of things to do, places to see and people to meet. For example, Atlanta is a great sports town. We've got so many great teams: Braves baseball, Thrashers hockey, Falcons football, Hawks basketball, Gladiators minor league hockey, Force arena football, Rollergirls roller derby, Xplosion women's football, Silverbacks soccer and of course our beloved college teams, the Dawgs, Yellow Jackets and Panthers. But now Atlanta has a new sports team. One that I am truly excited to be a part of. It's not every day that a new professional sports team starts up in your hometown… much less you get an opportunity to be a part of it. I feel lucky and honored to have been chosen to work for this new Atlanta team.
It reminds me of my fraternity experience a few years ago. You see, I went to Georgia State University. At the time, GSU did not have a chapter of my fraternity. Instead, the fraternity chapter at Georgia Tech allowed the guys from Georgia State to join. Little did I know that when I joined, a couple of the guys at the Tech chapter came up with the idea to establish a chapter at State. At first I was a bit reluctant. But it was a huge opportunity and way too big to pass up. So I joined, and we started up our own chapter at State. It was nothing quite like joining an existing fraternity - it was more like starting up a new business.
Here at WNBA Atlanta, it is somewhat similar. We've just started getting our operations going. It's nothing like joining a company where everything is already established. In fact, we just moved into our new offices and I have to say our new digs are pretty sweet… it's got a loft-type feel to it with exposed brick, beautiful architecture and even a sweet rooftop skylight up here on the 5th floor. I love being on the top floor… there's just something about being high up. The skylight just so happens to be directly over my new workstation. Every once in a while I take a moment to reflect, look up and check out the view. It serves as a constant reminder that the sky is the limit. I may not have an office with a window or a view, but hey, this is pretty close. We are also only a couple of blocks away from Philips Arena… which is such a sweet perk as a hockey fan! It will also come in handy for all of those Hawks games and concerts I go to as well. If you happen to have any spare Van Halen tickets, just let me know ;-)
Every day things grow in excitement and anticipation. In fact, this Friday, I get to work at a local basketball tournament to let everyone know the WNBA is here in Atlanta! Working at these events and getting to meet all of these people is fun, exciting and rewarding in many ways. To be able to talk sports with other like-minded sports fans - and get paid for it - you really can't get much better than that! It's not every day you get an opportunity to be a part of something new, something exciting and something that will become a part of the history of your hometown.
I'll be honest - I'm a diehard hockey fan. I haven't missed a home game in over three seasons. I live at Philips Arena. I consider it my home away from home. Sure, I am a bit biased, but I've been to plenty of other arenas and I can tell you this -we'll be playing at one of the best, if not THE best, arena in the country. OK, we aren't the brand new Prudential Center in Newark, but then again, our tickets don't cost an arm and a leg (and perhaps a few other body parts) to watch our team play. We've got some of the most fan and family-friendly ticket prices anywhere. We've got SEASON TICKETS…yes, I said SEASON TICKETS… as low as $149 for the entire season. With other sports, a ticket to ONE GAME might cost you that or more! Getting season tickets includes priority access to playoff tickets if we make the playoffs…excuse me… WHEN we make the playoffs. You really just can't go wrong getting a set of season tickets with WNBA Atlanta. (Call me at 404-954-6654, ask for Jason and I'll set you up with an awesome set of seats for our inaugural season!)
As a guy, I know what you are thinking… "Women's basketball?!?! Yeah right!" Well, let me tell you this - These girls are awesome. They are talented. They are all about team. It's all about fundamentals. I've seen them play and let me tell you - if you are a sports fan, you'll love seeing these girls play. Even if you think you'd never watch a WNBA game, I'm not sure about you, but any excuse I get to go to Philips Arena, I go. Just to be in the arena is an awesome experience. Heck I've sat through some not-so-my-type concerts… just because they were at Philips Arena. The sights, the sounds, the awesome food… you just can't get better than that. It's a great place to not only root on your favorite team, but to meet a lot of like-minded folks who have the same passion and love for your team that you do. There are a lot of things and places to see in Atlanta, but there is none better than hanging out at Philips Arena. Even if you think you'd never watch a women's basketball game, this is a chance for you to come hang out at Philips Arena during the summer, whereas before, there weren't many reasons to come down to Philips other than for a concert or two during the summer. Now, you can not only do the Tomahawk Chop down at Turner Field, you can also cheer on Atlanta's newest team at Philips Arena and be a part of Atlanta history as we prepare to take the court for our inaugural season!
Our schedule is set. The excitement is building. I hope you will be a part
of WNBA and Atlanta history when we tip off our very first game against Detroit
on May 23! Don't forget, give me a call at 404-954-6654 and I'll set you up
with some awesome seats! Happy Holidays and Happy New Year to all!
From the Motor City to the Peach State
Posted by: Akilah Washington, Monday, December 17, 10:40 a.m. ET
It has definitely been a change for me the past week, but I have embraced it with nothing but excitement. My name is Akilah Washington and I am an Account Executive with the new WNBA team here in Atlanta. I must say that this is a change from what I am used to, going from the Motor City - Detroit, where we drove everywhere we went to The Peach State - Georgia, where everyone rides the train. When I left Detroit last Thursday and drove down 75 so many things popped into my mind. I have always been a hometown girl, enduring the sub degree weather and of course the piles and piles of snow, and now I was moving away from home for the first time in my life. Of course fear crept into my mind, am I making the right decision to move, what if I didn't meet any new people, and most importantly what if I didn't like my job? A week later, I have to say, I see light in this the picture and its not just the sunshine that i see each day, it's the job I have, and the way people have embraced me here!
Monday, December 10th was my very first day in the office, and it took so long to get here as the GA traffic got the best of me. Once I arrived to the office, and after meeting everyone it was time to get to work, but not before i could get my first real taste of a CHIX-Fil-A chicken biscuit and boy was was I impressed. Once Tuesday arrived I had moved over to the Marta instead of driving downtown and that really took a lot off of me. My first week definitely went by fast and to close it out I was actually able to attend a Hawks game and i really enjoyed myself.
Going into my second week here the weather has definitely changed but it beats what it is back home. 12 inches of snow and more to come there, I must say I don't miss that at all. But inside of bunker 1208 it is heating up, we are definitely signing up more and more founding fans. I'm very impressed by the welcome that we are getting in the city so far. Well back to the phones, I go have to get to 10 by today and keep warm in the meantime.
Call for your season tickets 404-604-2626!!!!!
Day in the Life
Posted by: Chris Stephens, Thursday, December 13, 10:30 a.m. ET
You know I keep wondering, is this really my second week with the WNBA Atlanta franchise??? WOW! I started last Monday and there is no way it should be the following week already. Well I guess time flies when you love your job, although it doesn't hurt that so many people are calling in, gathering information and purchasing season tickets. Keep the calls coming....I like to talk!
I bet some of you are out there wondering what goes on in Bunker 1208 every day. Well, you are in luck because here is the exclusive look into my life as an Account Executive!
7:30 - 8:07: My MARTA ride to work....usually reading the sports section of the paper (thanks AJC...also remember MARTA is SMARTA).
8:08 - 8:30: Pick up some coffee (and a cookie when I can't resist), then get into the office and get ready to hit the ground running.
8:30 - 12:00: One of my favorite times (especially 9-10) ... I start by calling a few folks and returning a few emails...then I really dive into my lists of all the folks requesting tickets and information. Folks, remember if you want your friends sitting next to you, let us know...the seats won't be there when your friends decide to call us in a few days!
12:00 - 1:00: Lunch ...yummm! Today's lunch consisted of beef flanks (stuffed with mozzarella and spinach) and a fresh salad composed of baby green spinach with vinaigrette dressing. For all those thinking man this guy can cook...it's called Publix fresh meat section...and the vegetable section....all I have to do is put it in the oven and throw it in a bowl....NICE!
1:00 - 5:30: Start off by returning calls ....followed by a few outbound calls I want to make... next I respond to emails…finally wrap up my day with calls to everyone who has asked me to call in the evenings because they have been caught at work talking to me (I didn't mean to get them in trouble...but we just have great conversations as they find their perfect seats).
5:30: Send out a few emails.... Prepare for the next day
By 6 or 6:15 I'm jumping back on SMARTA, while talking myself into working out that night (I usually do, but sometimes... )
Well, I hope you enjoyed this inside scoop into what goes on in the life of Account Executive, Christopher Stephens ................CALL ME!
Posted by: Eric Schirmer, Wednesday, December 12, 10:35 a.m. ET
On Sunday, Dec. 2nd, I moved from Chicago to Atlanta to begin working for the new WNBA team. It was my first time in Atlanta, and I think I have found my new home. I had spent my whole life in Illinois -- grew up in a small town, and moved to Chicago a few years ago. Because I had never lived anywhere else I really didn't know what I was missing out on. Of course, I have taken vacations all over the country, but you never really get a true sense of a place until you start putting roots down.
I left Chicago after working for the Chicago Sky, now the second-newest team in the WNBA! Living and working in Chicago was certainly a change of pace that I was not used to. All while I was there, although I enjoyed all a big city has to offer, I missed the small town feeling I had grown up with. As soon I had heard that the WNBA had granted Atlanta with the new expansion team I couldn't wait to move down. I had always wanted to live somewhere south, and the idea of working with a new expansion team was right where I wanted to be.
My first night in Atlanta I went to Atlantic Station and fell in love with this city. Every evening since then I have driven around exploring new places in the city, trying not to get lost. Using the MARTA and walking around the Peachtree Center receiving a smile and a head nod as I walk by is exactly the small-town feeling I was missing in Chicago. Everyone I work with -- my new roommate, even the servers at the restaurants -- have been wonderful and have offered advice on what places to see, and where in town to go.
I do have to say that it made leaving Chicago a lot easier when I found out the high temperature was only 24 degrees there the day after I moved. I am not a big fan of shoveling snow and scraping the ice off of my car windows! So as much as I am truly loving the warm weather in Atlanta, it is the warmth of the city that has truly made me feel at home.
Now Hiring! Please Apply Soon!
Posted by: Mahdi Chaney, Monday, December 10, 12:40 p.m. ET
I am amazed at how many phone calls we are receiving down here at our wonderful make-shift offices! Of course we receive the calls for season tickets, calls about open tryouts, calls about volunteering, calls about upcoming free events, but my favorites calls are the ones that start like this: "Are y'all hiring?"
Well, let me put it out there for all interested applicants, WE ARE HIRING!!!!!!!! I have attached the Job Description here:
JOB TITLE: WNBA Atlanta Fan/ Liason
JOB TYPE: Full-Time Fun
START DATE: Yesterday!
COMPENSATION: Countless Hours of Unbelievable Entertainment!
REQUIRED EXPERIENCE: You must be able to smile and cheer.
CONTACT: Mahdi Chaney
JOB DESCRIPTION: We are currently looking for individuals to train as WNBA Atlanta Fans for our Atlanta group. We are seeking motivated individuals looking to build a fan base through hard work and determination. We offer competitive compensation and benefits programs. In addition to your compensation, we offer some extraordinary benefits to full season tickets holders. Please call me today so that you can hear about the benefits package NOW! I am looking to hire thousands of employees for this position, so don't be afraid to apply.
Loving it in Atlanta
Posted by: Jimmelle Melvin, Thursday, December 6, 11:40 a.m. ET
I am Jimmelle Melvin, Senior Account Executive for the new Atlanta WNBA team and I just started on Monday! I also moved down from N.C. on Sunday. This is my third day and I am getting familiar with the Atlanta area and getting organized. I had heard about the traffic, but I finally saw first-hand what all the talk was about...so now I realize MARTA is smarter! Only I have been hearing some interesting conversations on MARTA, or should I say..I'm officially in the A conversations on the MARTA train....lol...okay, that's entirely another blog.....back to the WNBA!
Well, I am truly excited and ready to get the ball rolling on filling up the stands; our team is going to be awesome!! Philips Arena is very nice, and I have already sold some packages this week. I am ready to sell, sell, sell and take care of my clients... Side note: I am a dedicated Account Executive always available for my client, so if you haven't already gotten your seats then go ahead and call me. Trust me, the good seats will be gone really soon! Especially if you want VIP…So give me a call and we can talk basketball, tickets, whatever you want! (404-604-2626).
P.S. Shout-outs to Eboni Tyler and the Washington Mystics staff, to my sister Chasity Melvin and to my family in North Carolina!!
P.S.S. While in the process of finishing this blog, I received a very beautiful ensemble of balloons, WNBA teddy bears and basketball shaped cookies delivered here to our office at the Westin!!!! THANK YOU!! THANK YOU!! My day couldn't possibly get any brighter!!
What a Week!
Posted by: Jacquie Tatman, Tuesday, December 4, 5 p.m. ET
Talk about an exciting first week! This is Jacquie. I’m one of the new account executives for the WNBA Atlanta team. When I accepted my position I was excited to be a part of the new team, but I had no idea what I was getting myself into.
Last Tuesday I started with a crash course of the WNBA and the Atlanta team and then I was put to work on the phones (and made a sale by lunch time)! On Wednesday, Joe, Allison and I attended the Downtown Development Expo and made several new contacts and leads, which we hope to turn into dings very soon!
Thursday was a big day. We attended the Circle of Friends Luncheon and the Club 13 meeting that evening. And to top it all off I got to meet head coach Marynell Meadors (an amazing woman who I can’t wait to see what she’ll do for the team) and the WNBA President Donna Orender (yet another amazing woman that is ecstatic about the Atlanta team). I don’t know about you, but I don’t think everyone gets to meet the president of their company on their third day of work, and I am thankful I had that opportunity!
After Thursday I didn’t think we could end the week any better, but I was wrong. The staff down here from New York set a goal to sell a certain number of season tickets by November 30 and starting Friday morning we were oh-so very close! Everyone was on the phone on Friday - - "Power Hour" was extended from 8:30 am – 5:00 pm (no joke) and the bell was dinging non-stop! As the hours went by the number of tickets sold climbed higher and higher, and as of 4:52 pm on Friday, November 30 we had reached our goal! This was an amazing way to end the week and to send off some of the New York staff, who I was sad to see leave. The New York staff has been great so far and they have set us up for a successful first season.
While we did reach our initial sales goal on Friday, we still have many good seats available that we want to fill. These seats are selling fast, so be sure to give me a call TODAY… 404-604-2626.
Club 13 Gets in the Ding of Things
Posted by: Kathy Burrows, Monday, December 3, 11 a.m. ET
|Click here for more photos from the event!|
The evening led off with a thank you from Circle of Friends member Danielle Donehew and a surprise visit by the new coach, Marynell Meadors, who shared her passion for the WNBA and her commitment to this city and this team.
When asked if they can reach the Club goal, members shouted, “YES WE CAN”…the theme of Club 13 this year and a theme of the WNBA league offices. This was followed with a presentation of a bouquet of flowers to Sharon Remaly, a Club 13 member, who took pity on all of us living out of Bunker 1208 the past month and a half and came in to give us all massages….(ahhh….what a mellow, relaxed group we were that afternoon!) Then came the announcement of sellers to date, complete with each seller dinging the bell and receiving a much coveted “YES WE CAN” t-shirt personally from the President of the WNBA, Donna Orender. Our top seller for the month, Kathy Russell (sold 15 full seasons this month!) received her t-shirt from Donna, a special commemorative scrapbook (handmade!) of this year’s WNBA, and a gong to start dinging her own bell!!!! Kathy is the first Club 13 member who will receive a custom Club 13 jacket!
The evening was highlighted by an impassioned talk by Donna Orender. Her vision for this city, this team, the fans and Club 13 has all of us ready to go out and sell! Without question, Donna fired us all up – as only she can do – to be excited and proud of the opportunity we have! So moved by Donna’s speech, one of the staff from the Westin assisting that evening signed up to be a Club 13 member so she can do her part!!!!!
As Donna commented after the meeting, the passion in the room was unbelievable. This truly is an exceptional group of men and women who are giving their all to making sure your new WNBA Atlanta team succeeds. On their quest to reach their season ticket goal this month, Club 13 is over half way there with 2 more weeks to go!
I am privileged to have met each and every member of Club 13, and will be sad yet excited to turn over the ‘godmother of Club 13’ status to a new Atlanta staff member and watch it grow into a real model for the rest of the league! I have made so many friendships with them and will continue to urge and support them to hit their goal….because YES WE CAN!
Interested in helping us as a Club 13 member? Yes YOU Can! Call 404-604-2626 and let us know you would like to join Club 13! Better yet, not only join... make sure you buy your season tickets, too! And do it fast. My last day in Atlanta will be Friday and I sure would like to get to know you…and get the dings in… before I leave!
Posted by: Geoff Colleran, Friday, November 30, 5:11 p.m. ET
It's fair to say that WNBA Atlanta is part of the global marketplace! So when I got a call from Charles' wife, relaying the message that he wanted to put his deposit down, but wouldn't be able to make it to the Select-A-Seat event (I wonder why) , I felt it was my patriotic duty to get him an aisle seat. So if you guys want to join the illustrious club that is my season-ticket holder group, you better hurry up because sadly Wednesday is my last day in the ATL. Get those calls into 404.604.2626 before it is too late to speak to the kid!
Bringing WNBA Atlanta to Life
Posted by: Allison Fillmore, Thursday, November 29, 10:37 a.m. ET
I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving! The blog is back up and running....Let me introduce myself! My name is Allison Fillmore and I am the new Director of Ticket Sales for WNBA Atlanta! I started on Monday and I have to say how amazed I am with the staff from the WNBA that has been here bringing this team to life. This city is lucky to have such a great group of people helping out! I know they have been working so hard and the results have been spectacular.
The city of Atlanta is not going to know what has hit it in the upcoming months! The WNBA is alive and kicking! The people of this town have given so much support to this franchise so far and I am so excited for what is yet to come! Naming the team, choosing colors, moving to our permanent office and so much more is going to be happening over the next couple of weeks so make sure to keep checking www.wnba.com/atlanta for the most up-to-date information. But also make sure to tell your friends all about us because I can tell you this....these games will be the place to be come May!!! Seats are going extremely fast so make sure to call soon! Help us make HISTORY!
Today the bell was dinging like crazy...probably our most dings to date! I feel there will be much more dinging in our future :)
Taking a Break to Give Thanks
Posted by: Joe Mulford, Tuesday, November 20, 5:57 p.m. ET
I am sure you are all on the edge of your seat waiting for the next blog from sales bunker 1208. Well here it is! Apologies for not having a blog the last couple of days. However, we are busy selling and building relationships in the Atlanta community. Our sales efforts cannot be slowed and we continue to push towards our ultimate goal. Your New York-based sales team (Yes, I have been on a plane a lot lately) is pushing the envelope daily challenging each other and continuing to get positive results. Our days are filled with phone calls, emails, Blackberry messages, debates about what music to listen too and most importantly ding dings as I am sure you are very familiar with now. The passion and energy committed to this team is a 24-hour-a-day job. However, we are all very excited for a little Thanksgiving holiday.
The WNBA Atlanta sales squad is going to take its longest break from each other in a month with everyone going to be with families at the end of this week. There were thoughts about the Atlanta crew spending the Thanksgiving holiday together. However, we decided against it because we felt everyone would sit around the table and try to sell each other season tickets, role play objections, practice pitches, ask open-ended questions and give their pipeline reports. So we will all take a much-needed break and enjoy some down time before we come back next week to continue our push and dings!
Oh yeah, one last story that I have no choice but to include. Last Thursday, Brett, Geoff, myself, and our guest for the week -- Ash -- went down to the Butler St. YMCA to play a little 2-on-2 at 6:30 in the moring. The early wake-up call hit us all hard but once on the court the game was very intense. Much to my dismay, Geoff and myself lost 5 striaght games to Brett. He might have hit 80 percent of his three-pointers. Ash is a great role player and filled in nicely on a few screens. Alright, it's done. We lost.
Heating Up in Hotlanta
Posted by: Amanda LoCascio, Thursday, November 15, 10:43 a.m. ET
Greetings from Hotlanta! I’m sure everyone might be wondering why we are referring to our second home down here in Atlanta as Hotlanta? Well, two reasons quite frankly. First of all, it is November right? Sixty-seven degrees? No jackets, scarves, or gloves needed? The weather is phenomenal here right now (compared to what I am used to in NY this time of year). Second of all, we are HOT with sales! We have moved into the phase of really reaching out to Atlanta’s businesses and trying to find just how the WNBA and these organizations can work together. It is nice to get out and meet the city of Atlanta up close and personal.
Last night we were all invited to dinner at Ron Terwilliger’s condo in Buckhead. It was absolutely amazing! His patio viewed the entire city, which was breathtaking. We enjoyed some great Mexican cuisine. It was a great night overall and we were honored to have Ron invite us!
We are still expecting to sell out opening day in Atlanta! On that note, I better get back to setting up some meetings. We need to get ding-ing in here!
Yellow Jackets Feel WNBA Buzz
Posted by: Lauren Heiser, Tuesday, November 13, 2:16 p.m. ET
Last Friday night four Club 13 volunteer rock stars -- Ron, Emile, Cheryl and Kathy -- and I headed over to the Georgia Tech campus to promote the new WNBA Atlanta team at the men's and women's double-header/season opener at Alexander Memorial Coliseum. We are so thrilled to be working with Tech to promote women's basketball in Atlanta! The Georgia Tech staff (Katreshia, Jillian, Maureen, Todd and Lachina) welcomed us with open arms and graciously allowed us to promote the WNBA at the games.
The five of us, donning hip WNBA Atlanta t-shirts, took the GT fans by storm! Not only did a ton of folks approach us inquiring about WNBA season tickets, but we helped the GT team hit their sales goal for Tech Women's Basketball tickets for the night! A true team effort.
We met so many great folks at the game, including the Reichert family (pictured with Cheryl, Kathy and Ron) from Suwanee, Georgia, who purchased five season ticket packages to watch the Lady Yellow Jackets play this season, and also mentioned that they're looking forward to the WNBA season to start in May. T-minus six months and counting!
The Ding is the Thing
Posted by: Kathy Burrows, Friday, November 9, 10:16 a.m. ET
This morning I was privileged to attend an event with "Ladies Who Launch" and took WNBA legend Carla McGhee along to speak. Over 100 women shouted their support and gave applause for the new team and the words of passion Carla shared. People meeting with us after offered sponsor support, ticket support and “What more can we do to help?” which we’ve come to learn is the southern way! Ding ding ding….another reason to cheer!
Coming back from the meeting, I had calls and emails from members of our new Club 13…we are getting ready for some major ‘dings’ with them! They are out there being our very strong grass roots in the community! Lots of dings will soon be happening!
As I was waiting to go through the security line at the airport tonight, I had my “Ask Me About Season Tickets” badge on. A TSA agent pulled me aside and wanted to know all about it…then said he has two daughters that live and breathe basketball. When I told him about our family package he was thrilled and told me he will be calling to get the season package…then proceeded to tell everyone in line that WNBA Atlanta has affordable tickets for families. More dings soon to come!
Whether going to the grocery store that Mapquest said was .6 miles only to find that it was just about in Alabama, to finding THE donut shop that has that special coffee coveted by a few of our members, or some shooting hoops at a game while others are talking tickets while Geoff is getting a date, this has been an exciting learning experience for us each and every day. We’re excited to come each morning to see what we can do and where we can share the great news. This great group in Bunker 1208 has a passion for this team. They have pride in making this a successful franchise from Day One. They have a commitment to make a strong base of season tickets, and make sure that opening day is sold out and celebrated.
So yes, make sure you call and talk to us and help us ring the ding! Celebrate with us as we celebrate your joining our team with a season ticket package and give us your referrals so we can get more dings!
Call 404-604-2626 and let’s ding it!
True Atlanta Stories
Posted by: Geoff Colleran, Thursday, November 8, 12:18 p.m. ET
People of Atlanta, listen up! This guy right here, writing this blog, is Beantown born and raised (that's Boston, if you didn't know). A true Red Sox, Patriot type with Celtic pride ...but you know what? I've been out here in Atlanta for two weeks and I think I might stick around and make a home of it. No lie! This is good living out here. And I've done a lot of traveling in my day to WNBA markets and have never seen anything like the response we get out here. Let's make this team the next big thing! Come on this is the 'A,' I already know how you do it!
Today was another one of those days in the sales room, putting big numbers up on the board (like the Celtics did on Denver!). Nothing too out of the ordinary. The routine is: talk on the phone with true hoops fans, help them figure out the best place we can fit them into Philips (yes, I said fit them -- it's filling up in there!) and leave with yet another fan satisfied. And trust and believe, we've been sprinkling satisfied founding fans all over the city, so much that I have to share a story with you.
So two nights ago, I headed out to dinner in Atlantic Station. I'm not going to say the restaurant (not without them chipping in to cater our next office party!!) but they have the best crunchy spicy salmon roll in the city! So there I am working on my crunchy roll and I notice the women sitting next to me looks like a true ball player. And I don't just throw that term around loosely. I played a little ball in my day too, OK! But this young lady looks like she could really put in some work. So I tell my buddy, "This lady needs to know the scoop on season tickets." (As a matter of fact you all do, give me a call at 404.604.2626 , ask for Geoff, I got you covered!)
I get to talking to the lady and she already bought her season tickets right on courtside (and if you want some courtsides you better hurry up and call!). Come to find out she bought them from a fine young man named Geoff! Now for a guy that's only been in Atlanta for two weeks, I'd say ATL is either a really small city or the WNBA has spread its wings all over the town!!! You make your own assessment!
But listen, this is the end of the blog...I know depressing, right? Guess what though, you can call me up at 404.604.2626 and get a million more stories even better then that, get some ticket information, lock in your seats, dating advice, fashion tips, talk sports..........whatever you want. I'm here, just holla at me!!!
Ohhhhh and that women I spotted as a ball player? Turns out she is none other than Neisa Johnson, former WNBA player for the Charlotte Sting and Detroit Shock.....tell me I don't have an eye for talent!
Club 13 Commences
Posted by: Lauren Heiser, Wednesday, November 7, 11:07 a.m. ET
After a long day in the office, the entire staff headed upstairs to attend the tip-off meeting for the newly formed Club 13--an incredibly enthusiastic group of over 100 volunteer sales folks. It was great to see familiar faces as many volunteers from Saturday's Meet Your Seat event continued their selfless efforts by joining the Club 13 team. Donna Daniels did a great job of mc'ing the festivities (with more energy after a 12-hour workday than any of us ever expected!), and Kathy "Club 13 Godmother" Burrows enthusiastically explained the program and rallied the troops. Two former WNBA players, Carla McGhee and Rushia Brown, even joined us to lend their support!
The enthusiasm for this team is palpable. From the incredible turnout at the Meet Your Seat event on Saturday, to the endless support from Mayor Franklin and the City Council, to the gallant volunteers, to the dedicated sales team who have left their friends and family behind in NYC to spend months in Atlanta to help start this team: we're all honored to be a part of this.
The Hotlanta Report
Posted by: Brett Zalaski, Tuesday, November 6, 9:07 a.m. ET
The team was back to work on Saturday for the "Meet Your Seat" event at Philips Arena. Though weary from another frenetic week on the phones, the sales team was immediately buoyed by the unbelievable excitement and passion of the throngs of fans that passed through the gates to get their seats. As the white tags covered seat after seat, it began to look like winter had hit the Philips Arena early.
Sunday saw some of the team head home for much needed down time with their families, some of the team just have down time (sleep!), and others ventured to the Georgia Dome to watch the Falcons beat the 49ers.
Today the team was back on the phones and had another fantastic day - day after
day the passion of the women's basketball fans in Atlanta and surrounding community
finds a way to raise our energy levels - and we continue to try and match it!
Checking in from HOTLANTA!
Site of the WNBA's newest franchise
Posted by: Donna Daniels, Friday, November 2, 4:29 p.m. ET
Hi everyone...It's Donna Daniels, a member of the NBA's Team Marketing Business Operations (TMBO) department and the enthusiastic leader of WNBA Atlanta's "Where Amazing Happens" campaign...We have several WNBA staff members here in Atlanta - our home away from home for the next several weeks - as we work to get the Atlanta franchise up and running. Here's a quick look at what we've been up to, beginning with the press conference on October 17 announcing that Mr. J. Ronald Terwilliger would become the owner of the WNBA's newest franchise....
What a great day!!!! It started off bright and early in Centennial Olympic Park for the press conference. I am always amazed at how NBA Entertainment can turn a nice but "plain" space into a full-blown, sophisticated set. I hope you were able to catch the press conference on NBA TV or view it on WNBA.com. The highlight for me was Mayor Shirley Franklin, who made it a special point to wave around and read the top of the ticket deposit form.
We had a great turnout at the press conference. In addition to the school kids on hand, we had VIPs from the City of Atlanta, the Chamber of Commerce, business partners, Atlanta Spirit and the Circle of Friends. The Circle of Friends is a group of 12 successful Atlanta business women who were the driving force in getting a team here. This group is led by Lisa Borders, the President of the City Council and soon to be a mayoral candidate, a very dynamic "go-getter" in this city. Additionally, we invited our volunteers and those who had pledged to buy season tickets as a way to show that Atlanta can support this team. Our sales table was the place to be at the press conference....we took immediate deposits on season tickets and got things started right away.
When we got back to the sales office, there was a buzz in the air. People were calling us....and we were calling them....the season ticket deposit numbers climbed as the day went on. Our sales bell was ringing all day long and we had a very productive first day!
In between the calls and the bell ringing, we had lunch with the Circle of Friends and the new owner, Mr. Terwilliger. Then, it was off to a two hour "working session" on how we are going to make an impact during the franchise's first 60 days.
Back to the sales office for Power Hour.....all of us on the phone selling and bringing in those deposits. Then, the sales team (JM, Joe, Geoff, Amanda, Kathy and Brett along with Stephanie and Ali) all headed out for a well-deserved dinner, as no one could stand the thought of yet another slice of pizza.
Our tireless energy has come straight from the people of Atlanta - their passion and stories have been just overwhelming - we had two women screaming in excitement over the phone, two women crying in excitement over the phone, and people committing to travel as far as 3-4 HOURS for each game. That and the camaraderie the sales team has been developing has made the long hours in the Sales Room much easier...
Wow, what a week. I am sitting here in the Sales Room all by myself and I have to admit, it is kind of weird...no bells ringing, no buzz on the phone. A little too quiet for me after such a good week. Everyone is on their way home to NYC for a well deserved rest before we get started again on Monday. I am attending an event tomorrow with 250 girls, ages 12-17, and their parents. It's part of a "Call to Womenhood Conference" and the theme is Capture Your Dreams. Perfect for the WNBA.
We will be ready again on Monday to sell, publicize and promote this team.
Have a great weekend and stay tuned for more from Atlanta next week.