Sponsor Content Above the Clutter with Pete Krainik
Episode Seven: Man And Machine
Brought to you by: IBM
Thirsty for a soda but unwilling to leave your Super Bowl seat? Visa's got you covered. The payments and technology company will offer its mobile payment platform so that game attendees at Levi's Stadium can order and pay for concession drinks from the comfort of their chairs. This is the first time Visa has brought such an offering to a stadium, noted Lara Balazs, senior VP and head of North America marketing for Foster City, Calif.-based Visa. The service is available through the Super Bowl 50 app where Visa Checkout will be integrated.
"Having the [Super Bowl] in the Bay Area, the technology-driven part of the U.S., gives us the perfect platform to showcase our leadership in payment and payment innovation," said Ms. Balazs.
Visa, which has been a sponsor of the NFL for more than two decades, has also outfitted Levi's Stadium with over 700 point-of-sale terminals, so that consumers can buy NFL fan apparel by just tapping on their phones. The fan shopping area in San Francisco's Justin Herman Plaza known as Super Bowl City will also have Visa and Samsung mobile payment choices. Visa Checkout has over 250,000 merchant partners including Starbucks and Walgreens; Walmart is expected to join the network in May.
Beginning Jan. 30 and running through the Feb. 7 game, Visa plans to stream a light show on the two towers that comprise One Market Plaza in San Francisco, where the company houses its innovation center. The projection, to encompass 18 floors on one tower and 21 on another, will feature NFL and Super Bowl imagery. Visa worked with San Francisco-based Obscura Digital on the display. BBDO is the company's creative agency of record; Starcom handles media duties.
"Having this statement helps showcase how we are an innovative, technology-driven brand," said Ms. Balazs. She declined to say how much the brand is spending on its Super Bowl marketing.
Visa has not aired a TV spot in the Super Bowl since 2005; the company has instead focused on events and technological initiatives to build buzz. At last year's Super Bowl, it hosted a game of catch between Odell Beckham and Drew Brees during the halftime show.