SBD/Issue 152/Sponsorships, Advertising & Marketing

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  • Welcome To New York: Sanchez' Heritage May Help With Marketing

    Experts See Sanchez As One Of Most
    Recognizable Hispanic Players In NFL
    Jets first-round draft pick QB Mark Sanchez' Hispanic heritage "may boost his sponsorship opportunities should he succeed" in the NFL, according to Matuszewski & Kercheval of BLOOMBERG NEWS. Industry experts contend that Sanchez immediately joins Falcons TE Tony Gonzalez as "one of the most recognizable Hispanic players" in the NFL. Prior to the draft, Sanchez worked as a spokesperson for Sprint Nextel, and Sprint PR Manager Dave Mellin said that "heritage factored in the decision to align with Sanchez." Mellin added that Sprint is "considering an extended partnership with Sanchez," who also inked a sponsorship with Gatorade prior to the draft. The Radiate Group Exec VP/Sports & Entertainment Jan Katzoff said that if Sanchez has a successful rookie season with the Jets, he could earn between $5-10M "in endorsements in 2010" (BLOOMBERG NEWS, 4/27). ESPN's Sal Paolantonio said drafting Sanchez is "just a marketing dream for the Latino connection for the New York Jets. As one member of the PR department told me, they are going to own the Latin community.” Paolantonio held up the back page of the N.Y. Post with the headline, “Sanch-Yes!” Paolantonio: “But as we know, in New York that can quickly turn into 'Sanch-No' if he doesn’t win. You can market him, but he’s got to win” (“SportsCenter,” ESPN, 4/26).

    Lions' Pro Shop Had Stafford
    Jersey Available Before Draft
    THE LION ROARS: In Detroit, Mark Snyder noted before the start of the NFL Draft on Saturday, the Lions' pro shop at Ford Field had QB Matthew Stafford's "No. 9 jersey hanging and available for sale" (DETROIT FREE PRESS, 4/26). Meanwhile, also in Detroit, Steve Schrader reported that "early sales indicate" that the Lions' new uniform and logo "are hits." Lions' retail partner MainGate President & CEO David Moroknek said, "We've done really, really well. It's really exceeded our expectations this first week. ... The one nice thing that we've really seen that was a little unexpected is the amount of orders we're receiving from states other than Michigan. Very strong sales from at least, on a conservative side, 15 to 18 other states." In the first 24 hours after the team unveiled the new uniforms and logo last Monday, registered more than 22,000 visitors and 300 orders, including orders from 10 countries (DETROIT FREE PRESS, 4/26).

    NOTES: The Raiders are offering the jersey of first-round draft pick WR Darrius Hayward-Bey for $199.99, the "only team currently offering this expensive option of its recent draft pick to the team's fans" (, 4/26)....Packers draftee LB Clay Matthews Jr. was shown on ESPN's Draft coverage Saturday at home with family and friends wearing black T-shirts from CytoSport that read, “Walk On” and below that, “Muscle Milk” (THE DAILY).

  • PGA Tour Considering Allowing Liquor Company Sponsorships

    Liquor Sponsorships Could Be Worth
    Up To $50M A Year For PGA Tour
    PGA Tour officials are "taking their most serious look yet at loosening rules that prevent spirit companies from buying tournament title sponsorships or traditional endorsements with players," according to sources cited by Jon Show of SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL. Industry sources estimated that the category "could be worth up to $50[M] a year in new sponsorship dollars," though the PGA Tour BOD "would have to approve any change in the rules, and there is no firm timetable for a decision." Under current rules, distilled spirit companies are "not allowed to title sponsor events on the PGA Tour, sign traditional shirt sponsorships with golfers or become an official sponsor of the PGA Tour." The companies "can title sponsor one event on each of the Champions and Nationwide tours, though neither tour has a distilled spirits title sponsor." If new rules are passed, spirits "would probably be limited to title sponsorships of the dozen or so events with four-round coverage on Golf Channel because sponsorships include ad inventory in tournament telecasts." Show notes the PGA Tour also is "looking at easing rules on endorsements" by spirits companies for players (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, 4/27 issue).

  • Wells Fargo Scales Back Entertaining At Quail Hollow Tourney

    Overall Corporate Sponsorship Revenue For
    Quail Hollow Championship Down About 8%
    Wells Fargo will receive "tickets, tent space and pro-am spots as part of its contract" with this week's PGA Tour Quail Hollow Championship, but the days of "treating clients to a private, celebrity-studded party ... are over," according to Jefferson George of the CHARLOTTE OBSERVER. Wells Fargo Senior VP & Corporate Communications Manager Mary Beth Navarro said that the bank "still has given clients tickets to the tournament." But she added clients "will be paying their own way and their own expenses." Navarro noted that Wells Fargo "has donated more television advertising time to educational assistance organizations Teach for America and the United Negro College Fund." Meanwhile, George reported attendees at the tournament "will see slightly fewer hospitality tents but a wider range of food and drink options than in past years." Tournament Exec Dir Kym Hougham said that overall corporate sponsorship revenue is down about 8%. Hougham: "We've got the same number of people, but in some cases they decided to do things differently." Charlotte-based food consultant John Sergi said that the tournament's catering company is "offering five pricing packages instead of three for corporations," and that the two new options are "lower priced ... allowing companies to reduce their bar service -- from liquor to beer and wine, for example -- or even offer only soft drinks." Sergi noted that "nobody asked specifically for nonalcoholic options." Sergi: "This year it seemed like the proper climate. We do not have a static view of what we put out there." George noted as of Friday night, the Overlook Club premium ticket package, which is "geared to small and medium-sized companies" and costs $2,250 a ticket, was the only such package to have sold out for the tournament (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 4/25).

  • A-B InBev Has Signed On As Lead Sponsor Of Ping Pong Tournament

    A-B InBev has "signed on as the lead sponsor of the Bud Light Hard Bat Ping Pong Tournament, which started last month," according to Matthew Futterman of the WALL STREET JOURNAL. The brewery is backing Radical Media President of Media & Entertainment Robert Friedman and "several major partners, who think ping pong could be the next Texas Hold 'Em." A-B InBev VP/Marketing Keith Levy: "Bud Light has always been a fun brand. This fits in with what we've done with it in the past." Futterman reports the "brains and the money behind the tournament" are not just from A-B InBev and Radical Media, but also from Mark Gordon Co., which produces ABC's "Grey's Anatomy," and London-based FremantleMedia Enterprises, which produces Fox' "American Idol." Fremantle Exec VP Keith Hindle foresees a "variety of revenue streams from live ping-pong events, branded merchandise, sponsorships and league memberships." Hindle: "Table tennis is ripe for reinvention." Futterman notes the Hard Bat tournament began in March, with local A-B distributors "supplying Bud Light-branded ping pong tables to some 4,600 bars." Winners can "land an invitation to the tournament finals and play for the $100,000 prize in Las Vegas in late June." K-Swiss has "agreed to be the official clothing and footwear supplier for the event." The event "will be the focus of a two-hour television special that the organizers plan to air" on ESPN in September. Mark Gordon Co. Creative Exec Jordan Wynn: "It's poker eight years ago" (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 4/27).

  • Marketplace Roundup

    In N.Y., Jonathan Abrams reported Illinois-based protective sports equipment maker McDavid has "modified its NFL gear for basketball use," and the NBA is "happy as long as no one sees the extra padding." NBA Exec VP/Basketball Operations Stu Jackson said, "The compression items that are issued by the team are from our apparel partner, which is adidas. They're cut in a way that are not visible, so if a player chooses to wear another compression item, it must be so it's not visible." McDavid Marketing Dir Rey Corpuz, who "estimated that basketball padding for all ages could become a [$15-20M] business for his company," said, "That's the hard part of the product, that nobody sees it. It's designed specifically not to be seen at the NBA level." Abrams noted other companies, including Nike and Under Armour, have also "developed protective padding for basketball players." McDavid has sued Nike and adidas, "citing patent infringement, and is seeking to have them cease manufacturing padded undergarments." Neither lawsuit has been resolved (N.Y. TIMES, 4/26).

    Dollar General Has Expanded Sponsorship
    Of Sarah Fisher For '09
    WHEELS & DEALS: Dollar General has expanded its sponsorship of IRL driver and team owner Sarah Fisher this season. General Dollar will sponsor Fisher's No. 67 entry at Texas Motor Speedway on June 6 and Homestead-Miami Speedway on October 10, in addition to four previously announced races (Sarah Fisher Racing)....Aaron's Rents announced it would continue as the sponsor of both the spring NASCAR Sprint Cup and Nationwide races at Talladega Superspeedway through '13. The company began as titling the races in '02 (Talladega Superspeedway).

    IMPOSSIBLE IS NOTHING: BRAND REPUBLIC's James Quilter reported adidas has launched an interactive roadshow to "target sports enthusiasts around the UK." The campaign, created by Evoke, London, has been "dubbed the adiTOUR by the brand." The adiTOUR roadshow "aims to educate consumers about training and the importance of using the right kit and equipment." The campaign will feature cyclist Chris Hoy, cricketer Kevin Pietersen, Chelsea MF Frank Lampard and sprinter Christine Ohuruogu (, 4/24).

    SURF'S UP: Billabong has extended its sponsorship of the Billabong Pipeline Masters, the final event in the men's Vans Triple Crown of Surfing, through '12. Billabong first title sponsored the event in '07 (Billabong).

  • Knowledge is power: Become a better sports marketer

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