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ARNELL GROUP LOOKS TO DRESS UP FILA'S GRANT HILL CAMPAIGN
Published October 31, 1997
An "extensive" campaign by Arnell Group, NY, for Fila's newest basketball shoe, the Grant Hill IV, "seeks to concentrate more on the performance aspects of the product than its fashionability," according to Stuart Elliott of the N.Y. TIMES. The goal "is to counter perceptions that Fila shoes are more likely to be glimpsed in GQ than Sports Illustrated." The new TV campaign, which begins tonight, portrays Hill "either playing basketball or thinking about playing basketball so single-mindedly that at one point he even challenges his reflection in a mirror in an effort to demonstrate" that, as the campaign asserts, "the only competition is yourself." The decision by Fila "to overhaul how Hill is hawked" is central to a strategy to improve sales in its footwear category. Fila Senior VP/Advertising Howe Burch: "Frankly, this has been a difficult year. The company is really trying in many respects to re-engineer itself by enhancing our performance capabilities, and we see Grant as the cornerstone." The campaign is the first from the Arnell Group for Fila's Hill line and Fila's total annual ad budget is $20-25M (Stuart Elliot, N.Y. TIMES, 10/31).