Jon Spoelstra’s reputation as one of the most innovative and successful sports marketers is well earned. He has demonstrated this at every stop in his career:
- Mandalay Baseball Properties. As president and managing director of Mandalay Baseball Properties, LLC for eleven years, Jon created the most profitable minor league baseball teams ever. Mandalay owned/operated seven minor league teams. One of the teams, the Dayton Dragons, set a record that had never been achieved before—it sold out every ticket to every game during a season. The Dragons have now sold every ticket to every game for eleven straight seasons.
- New Jersey Nets. As president and COO of the Nets for three years, Jon dramatically increased ticket and sponsorship sales. During his tenure, the team set its all-time attendance record. Sellouts at Meadowlands Arena increased from zero to 25. Local sponsorship sales went up from $400,000 to $7,000,000.
- SRO Partners. Jon was founder and chairman of SRO Partners, a sports marketing consulting firm that works with teams in the NBA, NHL, MLB and teams in Japan and Spain.
- Portland Trail Blazers. In the 11 years with the Blazers as Senior VP/General Manager, Jon helped make the front office a model for all team sports. During his time there, there was never a game that wasn’t sold out.
He has written five books. His newest book, Marketing Outrageously Redux, How To Increase Your Revenues By Staggering Amounts, was released in February, 2011. It is a sequel to Marketing Outrageously which became a Wall Street Journal best-seller. Ice to the Eskimos, a general marketing book based on his sports marketing strategies, was published by HarperCollins in June, 1997. The book is a lively blueprint on how to take any product that isn’t the best in its field and jump-start sales and profits. It became a top seller in Japan. Success Is Just One Wish Away—a motivational book on how anybody can develop a passion for their job and life—was published by DelStar Books in June, 1999. Jon’s fiction book, Red Chaser, was published in December, 2009.
Jon was the focus of what was perhaps the strangest trade in sports history. Portland was in need of a guard to fill a hole created by injury. The guard that the Blazers wanted was the starting point guard for Indiana Pacers. The compensation to the Pacers wasn’t a player, but one week of Spoelstra’s time. Jon played a key role in the restructuring of the Pacers front office during that time frame.
Jon was a judge at the Miss America contest in September, 2003.