UFC 287 Suffers Early Marketing Mix up

UFC 287 Suffers Early Marketing Mix-up

Without marketing, very little happens in the world of sports. Granted, major franchises like Golden State Warriors or Manchester United might be able to get by on word of mouth (and an extremely regular schedule) but most events need at least some advertising to reach their intended audience. Historically, UFC has achieved this with posters, something that also forms a large part of its merchandising campaigns.

UFC 287

The most recent piece of marketing material released by the UFC has ruffled a few feathers – although, most might consider the reaction a little overblown. The poster for UFC 287 reads vertically instead of the customary left-to-right. This isn’t exactly unusual, as the imagery for UFC 271 and 273 also featured a vertical design, but the positioning of the fighters left some fans confused at first glance.

UFC 287 features Pereira vs. Adesanya II in the World Middleweight Championship in addition to a welterweight bout between Burns and Masvidal. Only, on the poster, it could appear that the fighters were battling in opposite bouts. It took just a few seconds for Twitter to catch up on what some fans considered a mistake and, in some cases, a disappointing one, given the potential match-ups possible.

It’s not the first time the UFC’s design department has had a difficult time in Photoshop. Prior to UFC 281, the poster that featured Pereira vs. Adesanya I was described as showing a “weird inter-gender tag team match” by one social media user. In addition to the latter pairing, it also featured two more – Esparza vs. Zhang and Poirier vs. Chandler – in an arrangement that would make the WWE blush.

Burns vs. Masvidal

UFC 287 will take place at the 19,600-capacity Miami-Dade Arena for the first time in two decades. The main event, Pereira vs. Adesanya II, will actually be the fourth time these two fighters have met in their careers, with the first happening way back in 2016 at Glory of Heroes 1 in Shenzhen, China. Pereira won that one – and the next at Glory of Heroes 7 a year later.

It’ll come as no surprise that the 3-0 Pereira is the favorite for UFC 287 and Pereira vs. Adesanya II, coming in at 13/10 to Izzy’s 8/13 in talkSPORT BET’s MMA betting. In the second bout of the night, Burns vs. Masvidal is likely to see the Brazilian fighter triumph over Masvidal, who is listed at an outside 7/2 with bookmakers. Burns gets the nod 1/5 in what he claims was the fourth time of asking for the Masvidal fight.

As for UFC’s poster gaffe, it definitely got people talking, which is the desired outcome of any piece of marketing. In the rankings of just how good a poster is though, it’s unlikely to beat fan favorites like UFC 234 from February 2019, which also featured Adesanya, this time against Anderson Silva, and the piece for Amanda Nunes vs. Felicia Spencer at UFC 250. A variant of the latter poster is currently being sold on the official UFC website.

UFC 287 takes place on April 9, 2023.

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