SBD/Issue 2/Sponsorships, Advertising & Marketing

FSG Looks To Market NASCAR Events To New England Kids

FSG Planning To Tap Into Red Sox
Nation To Grow Kids NASCAR Fan Club 
Fenway Sports Group (FSG) is "taking an unprecedented approach to cultivating a new generation of racing buffs in New England -- by aggressively marketing its NASCAR Racing team to children," according to a front-page piece by Jenn Abelson of the BOSTON GLOBE. FSG "plans to create a NASCAR New England Kids Club by tapping into Red Sox Kid Nation, which has become the largest such club in [MLB] with more than 17,300 members." Plans also are underway to "launch children's racing shows next year on [NESN], sell licensed model racing toys and collectibles emblazoned with the Sox logo, and create educational curriculums." FSG "also intends to host NASCAR fan festivities at Fenway Park to promote Roush Fenway Racing." FSG President and Red Sox COO Mike Dee: "Kids love speed. We need to find the right way to tap into that and use the power of the Red Sox affinity to get a regional base around the team." Abelson reported to capture more fans in New England, FSG planned to "rev up its children's campaign to potential sponsors, including Dunkin' Donuts and Velcro," at yesterday's Sprint Cup Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Gillette is "in talks to get its logo on toys and collectibles and create promotions around purchases of Gillette products." Abelson noted in the past, marketing NASCAR to children "has been difficult" due to various tobacco and beer sponsorships, but in recent years, those brands have "largely been replaced with phone and insurance companies, making it less of an issue." However, analysts said that even if "targeting children works, there's no guarantee parents with no taste for the sport will go along, and take the children to the track" (BOSTON GLOBE, 9/13).

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