SBD/5/Sponsorships Advertising Marketing

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  • INTERACTIVE WATCH: DISNEY CLIMBS ABOARD; ESPN LAUNCHES GAMES

         Walt Disney Co. is scheduled to "formally hop on the
    interactive bandwagon today with the launch of a new division
    that will publish video games and CD-Rom software."  Disney is
    the "last of the major entertainment conglomerates to launch its
    own interactive publishing arm.  The move is significant because
    it represents a major commitment to the emerging industry by the
    company that has been perhaps the most skeptical of the so-called
    digital revolution."  The division will be headed by Steve
    McBeth, Exec VP of Disney Consumer Products.  The company plans
    to publish five cartridge games (Sega/Nintendo etc.) and about a
    dozen CD-ROM titles by next Christmas (Amy Harmon, L.A. TIMES,
    12/5).
         ESPN/SONY DEAL:  ESPN Enterprises and Sony Imagesoft will
    release several news sports video games this holiday season.  The
    games include:  "ESPN Sunday Night NFL," "ESPN National Hockey
    Night," "ESPN Speed World," "NBA Hangtime '95," and "ESPN
    Baseball Tonight:  Pennant Fever Edition."  The games include
    commentary from ESPN personalities such as Chris Berman.  All
    titles will be available for the Sega CD format, while some will
    be available for Sega Genesis and Nintendo.  All will be released
    on CD-ROM "shortly" (ESPN).
    

    Print | Tags: ESPN, Indiana Fever, NBA, NFL, Walt Disney
  • JUST WHAT THE DOCTOR ORDERED FOR THE BASEBALL NETWORK

         With all the uncertainty surrounding baseball, one would
    think that The Baseball Network "would be about as busy as a bear
    in winter," writes Langdon Brockington & Mike Reynolds in the
    latest issue of INSIDE MEDIA.  However, Dr. Pepper confirms that
    it is pursuing a deal with TBN to buy ad time on ABC's telecast
    of the '95 All-Star game.  The buy makes sense because the All-
    Star game has a high-visibility; the game takes place in July,
    the company's key selling-season; and the game is scheduled to be
    played at The Ballpark at Arlington, near Dr. Pepper's HQs and
    the drink's No. 1 market.  TBN Exec VP/ Marketing & Sales Mike
    Trager: "We're in discussion with a number of soft drink
    companies regarding the 1995 season and beyond."  Trager also
    said TBN is talking to fast-food, finance and computer companies,
    but he would not elaborate.  (INSIDE MEDIA, 11/30-12/13 issue).
    

    Print | Tags: ABC, Dr Pepper/7UP, Walt Disney
  • MARKETPLACE ROUNDUP

         The NBA has "shelved" an $8M campaign touting its licensees
    until February at the earliest, agency sources reported last
    week.  Using the tagline, "I love this stuff," the ads were
    supposed to start in time for the holiday season.  "But an
    overwhelming response to the league's quirky new identity
    campaign with actor Bill Murray" has convinced the league to wait
    (BRANDWEEK, 12/5)....Both Pizza Hut and Domino's have added
    buffalo wings to their menu (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 12/5)....Former
    minor league player Craig Pippin plans to open 300 delicatessens
    nationwide with Tommy Lasorda's name.  Malls and airports "are
    early targets" for the new chain, called Tommy Lasorda's Dugout
    (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 12/5)....BUSINESS WEEK profiles British
    billionaire Richard Branson's attempt to enter the cola wars with
    his Virgin Cola brand (BUSINESS WEEK, 12/12 issue).
    

    Print | Tags: NBA
  • MATTINGLY, GRIFFEY GET SOME OFF-SEASON WORK FROM NIKE

         Nike is using two baseball stars to push its cross training
    shoes in an upcoming TV spot, scheduled to break during the NFL
    playoffs.  The ad has Don Mattingly hitting ball out of Yankee
    Stadium -- Ken Griffey Jr. catches it ball in CA and throws a
    runner out.  In a separate piece, BRANDWEEK's Eric Hollreiser
    notes that Nike is stepping up its regional basketball shoe
    advertising with the nine-market campaign "tailor-made for
    specific cities."  It signals a "fresh attempt" toward
    establishing regional dialogues "that make the brand more
    relevant to local youth, yet able to translate nationally"
    (BRANDWEEK, 12/5 issue).
    

    Print | Tags: NFL, Nike
  • NHL STRIKES DEAL WITH MINUTE MAID

         In spite of the NHL's two-month-old lockout, the league is
    still selling sponsorships.  The latest is a 2-year deal with
    Coca-Cola Foods that makes Minute Maid the NHL's "official juice
    sponsor."  The contract begins in '95 and calls for two
    promotions, possibly tied to the league's all-star game and its
    "Muppets Take the Ice" cross-licensing program via a merchandise
    premium or a sweepstakes.  The deal is restricted to juices and
    does not include Coca-Cola's Fruitopia beverage, sold under the
    Minute Maid brand.  Coke already has an NHL sponsorship for its
    flagship cola.  Rick Dudley, Senior VP and COO of NHL
    Enterprises, said the league is "sitting one two other
    sponsorship deals," one which includes a major "media commitment"
    to Fox (Terry Lefton, BRANDWEEK, 12/5 issue).
    

    Print | Tags: Coca-Cola, News Corp./Fox, NHL
  • PRODUCT-PLACING IN VIDEO GAMES, THE NEXT FRONTIER

         Product-placement advertising has come to the video-game
    business, "just in time for Christmas" -- and it is being
    "embraced by game makers as a possible cash cow."  Some examples
    include little Adidas billboards in the video game FIFA Int'l
    Soccer and 7-Up ads on a scoreboard of a Formula One Grand Prix
    video game.  "While new technology has made video games more
    believable, it has also made them vastly more expensive to
    produce.  Proponents say product ads help keep the expensive
    games from costing even more, while adding a dash of realism."
    Opponents of video-game product placement say the "arrival of
    advertising on computer games is wiping out one of the last
    havens children have against commercial messages."  What bothers
    consumer groups is that the ads in many of the games are "subtle
    -- often, products are woven into the action itself.  In
    addition, children play games over and over, unlike, say, movies,
    where viewers are usually exposed to product deals only once or
    twice."  Another worry:  "Unlike movies, which are rated by
    industry review boards, video games are unregulated."  There is
    nothing to prevent video game makers from accepting alcohol and
    cigarette advertising (Kyle Pope, WALL STREET JOURNAL, 12/5).
    

    Print | Tags: Formula One, Washington Nationals
  • SPRINT DEBUTS PHONE- INTERVIEW SERIES WITH NCAA COACHES

         Sprint debuts its interview with college basketball coaches
    who vote in CNN/USA TODAY's coaches poll.  It is a 15-week
    campaign, with USA TODAY print ads as the only mode of
    advertising.  A different NCAA coach with a vote is interviewed
    each Sunday by Sprint spokesperson Billy Packer.  Fans are
    encouraged to dial an 800-number to hear the coaches' top four as
    well as an interview with Packer.  The campaign culminates with a
    pick the Final Four contest, where Sprint flies the winner to the
    games (Cohn & Wolfe).
    

    Print | Tags: NCAA, Sprint, Time Warner
  • STEPPIN' OUT IN NFL LOGO FORMAL WEAR

         Lord West formal wear is offering new NFL items.  Football
    fans can "declare loyalties" with cummerbunds, vests and bow ties
    imprinted with their choice of NFL team crests and helmets.  The
    ties and vests reverse to traditional black for "less exuberant
    occasions."  Lord West is also offering tuxedos with the jackets
    lined in the same NFL fabrics (Mary Gottschalk, SAN JOSE MERCURY
    NEWS, 12/4).
    

    Print | Tags: NFL
  • VA-BASED APPAREL COMPANY TO LAUNCH FIRST NATIONAL ADS

         For the first time, Tultex, the VA-based apparel marketer,
    has purchased ad spots on national college basketball telecasts.
    The company, which will tout its Discus Athletic brand activewear
    in the ads, has cut deals for the '94-95 season with ESPN and
    Raycom (Brockington & Reynolds, INSIDE MEDIA, 11/30-12/13).
    

    Print | Tags: ESPN, Walt Disney
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