An Inside Look at DECA's Sports and Entertainment Marketing Conference

Feb 14, 2022

DECA's annual Sports & Entertainment Marketing (SEM) Conference was filled with laughs, screams and memories that will last a lifetime.

This year, conference attendees had the opportunity to learn from industry professionals from Universal Orlando Resort, the Orlando Magic, Full Sail University, the Greater Orlando Sports Commission and Florida Citrus Sports. DECA Members learned the ins and outs of everything they need to succeed in the industry.

The conference was held at Universal Orlando Resort, which meant that DECA members could experience the thrill of Universal Orlando every day after the presentations! One key highlight of the conference that had DECA members buzzing was seeing how Universal Orlando Resort’s marketing executives ensure that they remain one step ahead of their competition by utilizing industry secrets and analyzing market trends.

Have you ever wondered what it takes to host a massive event like Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights? Universal’s Vice President of Segment Strategy, Jen Rother, gave DECA members the inside scoop on what it takes to pull off such a large event and why events like Halloween Horror Nights are viewed as an essential competitive advantage for the theme park.

Did you know that Orlando could be the home of the 2026 World Cup Games? Shalissa Griffin, the Senior Director of Business Development and Events for the Greater Orlando Sports Commission, took attendees behind the scenes of the bidding process for the second most-watched sporting event in the world.

Participants also got an exclusive look at marketing one of the NBA’s premier teams, the Orlando Magic. The team's Senior Vice President of Sales and Operations, Chris D’Orso, explained that a common misconception is that the Magic’s top rival and competitor—in terms of revenue—is not fellow Florida NBA basketball team the Miami Heat. He explained that any Orlando-based entertainment attraction is a viable competitor to the sports franchise. The marketing executives are competing with entertainment giants such as Disney, SeaWorld and Universal Orlando Resort, just to name a few.

The 2022 DECA Sports and Entertainment Marketing Conference was a blast! After the conference, attendees rushed to social media using #DECASEM to show the world how they were maximizing their momentum in Orlando.


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