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IS IT EVERY MAN FOR HIMSELF IN THE WORLD OF NBA MARKETING?
Published May 30, 1995
The marketing and endorsement success of the NBA and its players is examined by Dwain Price of the FORT WORTH STAR- TELEGRAM. Price writes that "although the NBA is the epitome of a star system, it's not the league that pushes individual clients." NBAP Dir of Marketing Communications Peter Land: "We are more about marketing the game as opposed to (marketing) any specific players. ... We're not in the business of selecting one player over another." Land gives the example of the recent McDonald's "Looney Tunes" ad, where the list of players involved came from McDonald's. Players rely on their agents to set up endorsements, and "timing is everything in the endorsement game." Price examines the endorsement success of certain NBA players. Among them, Co-Rookie of the Year award winner Jason Kidd, who will be the focus of a campaign by Nike. Tom Feuer, Manager of Public Relations for Nike, said the company is planning a debut at the All-Star Game next year for a shoe called "Air Zoom" which will have a TV campaign featuring Kidd (FORT WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM, 5/28). NO PINWHEELS? In New York, Ira Berkow writes on a "dizzying dilemma for the NBA," where the league is trying to crack down on "mind-altering distractions" in the arena, such as pinwheel placards. Berkow: "But the broader issue is just how much one can get away with in a basketball arena. Obviously, these fans have taken their cues from the marketing departments ... It is a moronic concept -- that hoops must be secondary to a circus -- but one that has spread like a skunk smell" (N.Y. TIMES, 5/30).