Bucks recognized for partnership with Usinger’s Famous Sausage and Pick ‘n Save stores

The Milwaukee Bucks were presented the 2014 NBA Team Sponsorship Activation of the Year Award by the National Basketball Association at its annual Sponsorship Workshop in Phoenix last week. Workshop participants reviewed submissions from all 30 NBA teams and voted for the top promotion based on measurable results, creativity, the use of integrated channels and fan engagement.

The Bucks were recognized for their activation strategy with team partners Usinger's Famous Sausage, a multi-generational family-owned business that prides itself on delivering "America's Finest Sausage," and Pick ‘n Save stores, a regional grocery store chain synonymous with superior quality, exceptional value and spectacular variety for their customers. The highlight of this partnership was the "Bucks Best Brat" contest where fans were encouraged to submit their favorite bratwurst recipes and had the winning creation – decided through a public vote – sold at the BMO Harris Bradley Center, home of the Bucks.

"The Bucks designed a fantastic, digitally-focused program that delivered on the partners' objectives to engage fans, drive retail traffic and promote brand affinity," said Amy Brooks, NBA Executive Vice President, Team Marketing & Business Operations. "The program was extremely unique in that it combined multiple partners and many different channels to connect with fans in a fun and creative way."

From over 150 entries, representatives from Usinger's, Pick ‘n Save and the Bucks selected five finalists based on originality, then invited fans to vote for their favorite at For each of the nearly 300,000 votes cast, fans that entered their Pick ‘n Save Fresh Perks reward number received a digital coupon for Usinger's Sausage. Ultimately, the promotion helped drive a 42 percent increase in brat sales at Pick ‘n Save.

"Established brands are often looking for innovative ways to reach a new audience," said Theodore Loehrke, Senior Vice President and Chief Revenue Officer for the Bucks. "This promotion is a great example of our team's ability to leverage our strong social and digital assets to connect our young, diverse fanbase to an iconic brand."

After earning targeted local media placements and nearly 5 million impressions across Facebook and Twitter, the grand prize winner was honored oncourt, and fans were able to purchase the award-winning recipe – "The Milwaukee Brat" featuring a grilled Usinger's brat topped with Wisconsin beer cheese sauce, onions and bacon-infused sauerkraut – at the BMO Harris Bradley Center on April 5.

"Our partnership with the Bucks and Pick ‘n Save has proven to be an outstanding way to maximize the reach of our brand, specifically among a younger digitally savvy demographic," said Fritz Usinger, President of Usinger's Famous Sausage. "The combination of online and offline assets made for a highly effective and engaging promotion."

"Fans and our customers loved this promotion," said Joe Wood, Vice President of Marketing at Pick ‘n Save. "‘Bucks Best Brat' demonstrates what can happen when local institutions take the time and energy to pool their resources to deliver excitement and fun to a local community."

Fred Usinger, Inc. is a fourth-generation family-owned sausage company located in Milwaukee. Usinger's specializes in delighting consumers with traditional German Style sausages, a variety of ethnic favorites, and America's finest Hams, bacon and luncheon meats. For further information, contact Jon Gabe, Vice President Sales and Marketing.

Roundy's is a leading grocer in the Midwest with nearly $4.0 billion in sales and more than 23,000 employees. Founded in Milwaukee in 1872, Roundy's operates 169 retail grocery stores and 114 pharmacies under the Pick 'n Save, Rainbow, Copps, Metro Market and Mariano's retail banners in Wisconsin, Minnesota and Illinois. Roundy's is committed to helping the communities its stores serve through the Roundy's Foundation. Chartered in 2003, the Roundy's Foundation mission is to support organizations working to relieve hunger and helping families in crisis due to domestic abuse, neglect and other at-risk situations.

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