SBD/11/Sponsorships Advertising Marketing

MARKETING 101: NEW PUMA ADS GO BACK TO BASKETBALL BASICS

          Puma's new basketball ad campaign "forgoes pro
     endorsers in favor of the potentially risky strategy of
     using high-school" basketball players, according to Jeff
     Jensen of AD AGE.  The "Back to the Game" campaign, from PA-
     based Gyro Worldwide, will have TV and print support.  The
     young players used in ads "are from Puma's strongest
     markets:" Chicago, Detroit, Houston, Philadelphia, N.Y., and
     L.A.  Jensen writes that some footwear companies have been
     "criticized for targeting and wooing high school" players,
     but Puma Chief Creative Officer Antonio Bertone said that
     the athletes featured in the new ads "aren't being paid, and
     therefore they shouldn't be considered endorsers."  He noted
     that Puma will stop using the athletes in their senior year
     in order to protect their NCAA eligibility.  Puma, whose '98
     ad budget will be 15% of sales, will begin airing the spots
     nationally during the NBA playoffs (AD AGE, 3/9 issue).

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NBA, NCAA, Puma

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