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Bobblehead Dolls Give Fans a Reason to Come to the Ballgame

Flickr user: sha in LA
By Bill Doyle

I’ve been going to baseball games for decades and I never once attended a game because of what the team was giving away that day. To be sure, I have my share of major league tchotchkes from visors to beer cozies to, yes, bobblehead dolls, but the giveaway was never the reason I went; it was just a happy coincidence. Promotional giveaways must work, because teams keep having them year after year. But what about the bobble head giveaway, does that work?

According to the Wall Street Journal, the answer is yes. 2.7 million bobbleheads will have been given out when the 2013 season ends.

Looking back through stadium promotions this year, the Count found that a bobblehead giveaway increases a team’s attendance by an average of 4.8% over what the team draws each day of the week (i.e., Mondays compared with other Mondays). To be sure, there are other factors at play here—such as weather, that day’s opponent and who is pitching—but there is enough evidence to suggest the prospect of a free bobblehead will drive a fan to the park.

The most popular bobblehead doll this season? Seattle Mariners legend Ken Griffey, Jr.

Do you collect bobbleheads? If you do, which one is your favorite? If you don’t, tell us what it is you, or your kids collect in the comment section below.

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