SBD/27/Sponsorships Advertising Marketing

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  • CALLAWAY STANDS UP FOR BERTHA: LAUNCHES PR ASSAULT ON USGA

              Callaway Golf said that it would join others in the
         industry in opposing any changes implemented by the USGA
         banning modern golf clubs.  While the USGA is looking at re-
         interpreting existing rules or adapting new rules in an
         effort to outlaw modern metal woods, Callaway said that any
         such action by the USGA would hurt the game of golf, the
         USGA, and would be unfair.  Callaway President & CEO Donald
         Dye: "There is absolutely no good reason why millions of
         golfers should ever be required to give up their Big Bertha
         or comparable brand of metal woods" (Callaway).  USGA Exec
         Dir David Fay said that the organization has not concluded
         its research on club technology, "but we are looking at
         everything" (Clifton Brown, N.Y. TIMES, 5/23).  Callaway
         took out a full-page ad in the Wall Street Journal urging
         consumers to send comments to the USGA (THE DAILY).
    
    

    Print | Tags: Callaway Golf, USGA
  • JEFF GORDON PLUGS PEPSI IN VICTORY LANE OF COCA-COLA 600

              Jeff Gordon's victory at the Coca-Cola 600 on Sunday
         "certainly wasn't the most popular of all possible outcomes
         for Coca-Cola," according to David Poole of the CHARLOTTE
         OBSERVER.  Gordon, who once endorsed Coke but went to Pepsi
         before last season, "was careful to have" a Pepsi in-hand
         when he climbed from his car in Victory Lane, which was
         adorned with Coke bottles (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 5/25). 
         Around 175,000 people attended the Coca-Cola 600 Sunday at
         Charlotte Motor Speedway (Raleigh NEWS & OBSERVER, 5/26).
              REAL-TIME: For this weekend's races, Goodyear launched
         a new ad campaign as it videotaped two demos of a Chevrolet
         Corvette pace car with Goodyear Eagle tires running over
         nails at the IMS and the Charlotte Motor Speedway, before
         completing a full lap around the tracks without air in the
         tires.  The videotape was taken before the Indy 500 and
         Coca-Cola 600, then edited and shown during the respective
         broadcasts.  Goodyear called the spots the "nearest thing to
         real-time, you-are-there productions that it has ever done
         to promote a new product" (AKRON BEACON JOURNAL, 5/23).
              RACING NOTES: Best Western was named the official hotel
         of the IRL Pep Boys Series.  As part of the deal, the IRL
         Gold Crown Club will award frequent traveler points to IRL
         fans for every lodging dollar spent at any Best Western.
         Accumulated points may be redeemed for a variety of awards,
         including retail gift certificates, travel vouchers and IRL
         merchandise (Best Western)....The Indy 500 was won by Eddie
         Cheever, who recently signed a team sponsorship deal with
         MN-based Rachel's Potato Chips.  The company will pay about
         40% of the $1.5M it cost to run in the Indy 500 (Tarik El-
         Bashir, N.Y. TIMES, 5/27).....IRL sponsor Reebok made a
         "quick and temporary move" to appear at this weekend's Indy
         500, after driver Eliseo Salazar was bumped from the field. 
         Reebok's logo instead appeared on the side of Davey
         Hamilton's car (Holly Cain, DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 5/24).
         
    

    Print | Tags: Coca-Cola, General Motors, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, IndyCar, PepsiCo, Reebok
  • MARKETPLACE ROUND-UP

              NAMES: Cubs P Kerry Wood says he soon should have an
         equipment contract with adidas, but "has no plans to be in
         TV commercials for the company" (CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 5/26).
         ...Pharmacia's Rogaine, which signed Karl Malone as part of
         its $80M ad campaign, is currently testing other balding
         sports figures to see if Rogaine restores their hair
         (BLOOMBERG NEWS/Newark STAR-LEDGER, 5/26)....John Elway's
         marketing agent Jeff Sperbeck said that requests for
         endorsements have increased following the Super Bowl, but
         that Elway has "turned down most ... because they're short
         term.  He's looking for something beyond a year."  Sperbeck
         said that a couple of "big deals" are in the works (ROCKY
         MOUNTAIN NEWS, 5/24)....Boris Becker has established Boris-
         BeckerMarketing and AD AGE reports that the company may take
         over the marketing activities for the Davis Cup in Germany
         (AD AGE, 5/26)....NHL Wild Owner and in-line skate
         developer, Bob Naegele is developing a "high-end skate for
         elite hockey players" (ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS, 5/24).  
              NOTES: In-arena sports advertising was examined by
         Chris Zelkovich of the TORONTO STAR.  For the season, the
         Maple Leafs will sell "most" of their 36 rink-board ads for
         $225,000 each, while a pair of on-ice ads will go for
         $350,000 -- an annual income for the team of $8.7M.  The
         Blue Jays receive $150,000 a season for half-inning ads on
         the rotating sign behind home plate at SkyDome, a potential
         $2.5M "windfall," while ads on the foul poles bring in
         another $570,000 a year (TORONTO STAR, 5/23).....USA TODAY's
         Melanie Wells profiled Grey Advertising's Jon Mandel as part
         of a special look at the "up-front" selling period.  Mandel
         said he "expects to see" the purchase of about $1B in
         advertising this year.  In a sidebar, Wells also took an
         "inside look at TV ad buying," by asking five "prominent
         players" about ad trends for next season (USA TODAY, 5/27). 
         
    

    Print | Tags: Chicago Cubs, Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, Minnesota Wild, NHL, Toronto Blue Jays, Toronto Maple Leafs, Washington Nationals
  • MUST-READ ON SHOE COMPANIES DROPPING ATHLETES AS ENDORSERS

              The decline in footwear sales among sports companies
         and its impact on those companies' endorsement rosters was
         examined in "The Endorsement Game," a four-story feature
         over two-issues by Jeff Manning of the Portland OREGONIAN. 
         In a front-page, above-the-fold piece on Monday, entitled
         "Slump Speeds Slowdown of Spending On Athletes," Manning
         reported that at Nike's quarterly meeting in January,
         sources said that company Chair Phil Knight said he would
         rather cut athletes than lay off a single Nike employee. 
         But, Manning added, while companies debate whether they can
         afford the luxury of paying athletes to hawk their products,
         Nike "is the most reluctant to cut back."  Nike has been
         "particularly tough on track and field athletes, in part
         because there are no Olympics or other" major events this
         year, and is also "cutting many of its ties to bicycling,
         particularly road racing."  Other shoe companies "are
         pulling out of some sports nearly entirely," including Fila
         which is getting out of the football shoe business.  Fila
         VP/Advertising Howe Burch: "Kids just aren't as inspired by
         athletes because a) there are too many of them, and b)
         because of their behavior."  Reebok VP/Sports Marketing John
         Frascotti: "[W]e've hit a salary cap.  We sort of lost track
         of the reason for doing these deals" (OREGONIAN, 5/25).
              NIKE CHANGES? Nike critics argue that the company needs
         to take a "more selective approach to sports marketing," a
         department that some insiders "long had argued needed
         overhauling."  Manning reported that a "vocal faction within
         Nike is dissatisfied with Nike's mass-endorsement approach,
         which they said is 'see 'em, sign 'em.'"  A former Nike
         insider: "Phil [Knight] agrees this needs to be more
         strategic.  But Phil's the one who throws a fit if they let
         an athlete go" (Jeff Manning, Portland OREGONIAN, 5/25).
              THE DEBATE GOES ON: Among other aspects of Manning's
         report: Sunday's front-page feature ran under the header, "A
         Sports Marketing Juggernaut At The Crossroads: Nike and its
         competitors built their empires in an unprecedented
         partnership with athletes, but now the wildly successful
         strategy is in doubt."  In a sidebar on Sunday under the
         header, "Forget Research: Endorsements Just A Lot Of Fancy
         Footwork," Manning wrote that Nike spent $300M last year
         "largely on gut instinct."  While Nike and other companies
         know what they want from an endorser, they're finding it
         "more difficult to determine whether they're getting their
         money's worth" (OREGONIAN, 5/24).  On Monday, Manning wrote
         a sidebar under the header, "Scandals Don't Keep A Shoe Firm
         From Celebrating Its Superstars" (Portland OREGONIAN, 5/25).
    
    

    Print | Tags: Fila USA, Nike, Reebok
  • NASCAR AIMS TO REACH NEW MARKETS THROUGH THE SOUND OF MUSIC

              NASCAR will stage 15-25 branded concerts from May-
         August next year in partnership with CBS and TNN, according
         to Terry Lefton of BRANDWEEK.  Tentatively called "The
         Nascar Summer Music Festival," the tour will bring
         "mainstream acts to locales that typically do not host
         races," in an attempt to "reach outside" NASCAR's
         southeastern core markets.  NASCAR sponsors and licensees
         are being offered sponsorship packages that include signage,
         hospitality and media by way of NASCAR's TV partners.  TNN
         and CBS will produce prime time specials showcasing concert
         highlights and will also tie in local radio and TV affils 
         and cable operators.  Neither talent nor specific sites have
         yet to be booked, but Denver, Chicago and N.Y. will be
         venues for the outdoor concerts (BRANDWEEK, 5/25 issue).
              THE OTHER ONES: AD AGE's Jeff Jensen also reports on
         the concert tour and writes that NASCAR execs are
         undertaking initiatives to "craft branding strategies and
         integrated marketing programs" for its other properties,
         including the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series and the NASCAR
         Busch Series.  Jensen writes that perhaps "most ambitious"
         is NASCAR's intention to develop a branded platform linking
         nine different regional touring series, representing more
         than 2,000 events each year (Jeff Jensen, AD AGE, 5/25).
    
    

    Print | Tags: Anheuser Busch, CBS, NASCAR, TNN, Viacom
  • NTRA REMAINING REAL QUIET OVER NEW ATHLETIC ENDORSER

              The National Thoroughbred Racing Association has been
         granted licensing and merchandising rights to Triple Crown
         contender Real Quiet from the horse's owner, Mike Pegram,
         according to Jenny Kellner of the N.Y. TIMES.  The rights
         "protected" under the agreement include the name, image and
         likeness of Real Quiet and his "distinctive" red and yellow
         silks.  While the current deal runs through the Belmont
         Stakes on June 6, Pegram said negotiations are "under way to
         extend the agreement" (Jenny Kellner, N.Y. TIMES, 5/27).
    
    

    Print | Tags: NTRA
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