SBD/Issue 167/Sponsorships, Advertising & Marketing

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  • Time To Chat: Danica Launches Twitter Feed At Sponsor's Urging

    Watch Sponsor Tissot Will Receive Extensive
    Exposure On Patrick's Twitter Feed
    IRL driver Danica Patrick has launched a Twitter feed at the behest of watch sponsor Tissot, located @DanicaPatrick. She is believed to be the first major athlete to join Twitter in conjunction with a corporate entity, and Tissot will receive extensive exposure on her feed, including visual branding on her Twitter Web page. The effort was constructed in part by Charlotte-based Sports Media Challenge, and advisors said extensive care is being taken to structure the alliance as more of a natural product placement as opposed to an overt banner-type display. Patrick is due to discuss the Twitter effort at media appearances slated for today in N.Y. (Eric Fisher, SportsBusiness Journal).

    DRESSED FOR SUCCESS: Fox Business' Alexis Glick notes IRL is “looking to keep its 15% jump in attendance last year going strong by expanding its international reach” with its partnership with Izod. IRL driver Ryan Hunter-Reay, who also has a personal deal with Izod, said, “Izod is an American brand when it comes down to it. I'm a young American driver. It kind of all fit, and Izod is that fresh look.” Fox Business’ Chris Cottor noted to Hunter-Reay, “I see a lot of TV commercials with … a lot of NASCAR drivers, (but) not a whole lot of open-wheel drivers." Cottor: "Can open-wheel kind of come back and take over that top spot?” Hunter-Reay: “With the differences between … CART and the (IRL), NASCAR propped up. They’ve done some great shows, great racing, but now we are back on the rise” (“Money for Breakfast,” Fox Business, 5/18).

    FEMALE PERSPECTIVE: In Las Vegas, Ron Kantowski noted the No. 99 car driven by Alex Lloyd in this Sunday's Indianapolis 500 will feature a pink paint scheme "at the request of sponsor HER -- Healthy Energy Revitalizer, an energy drink for women." Lloyd likely will run "just this one race, unless sponsorship dollars start falling from the sky." Team Owner Sam Schmidt said, "I'd love to get back in the [IndyCar] series full-time but without the proper funding, why bother?" (LAS VEGAS SUN, 5/16).

    TEQUILA SHOTS: KV Racing Technology, which will have three entries in the Indianapolis 500, has signed a deal with Azul Tequila in which the brand will have sponsor placement on the No. 5 car driven by Mario Moraes (KV Racing Technologies).

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  • Dew Tour Rolls Out New Marketing Efforts For '09 Season

    By Tripp Mickle, Staff Writer, SportsBusiness Journal

    The Dew Tour rolled out its marketing and promotional campaign for its '09 tour last week. TV spots feature backlit skaters, BMX riders and FMX riders catching air in front of a D-shaped wall of light bulbs similar to those used in several contemporary music videos. The print campaign is similar and shows silhouettes of athletes standing with their boards and bikes in front of a D-shaped wall of lights. The TV spots will air across NBC, MTV and USA Network, as well as in video-on-demand segments across cable partners Comcast, Time Warner, Cox Communications, Mediacom, Dish Network and Verizon. The spots will run through October. The campaign was produced by creative agency Virtue and Warren Fischer from the popular electro-pop indie band Fischerspooner.

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  • Marketplace Roundup

    Law Firm Jumps In At Last Minute To Fund
    Mike Skinner At Lowe's Motor Speedway
    In Daytona Beach, Godwin Kelly reported Daytona Beach-based law firm Rue & Ziffra and the Daytona Live project "jumped in at the last minute to fund" Randy Moss Motorsports' No. 5 Toyota driven by Mike Skinner for Friday's NASCAR Camping World Truck Series North Carolina Education Lottery 200 at Lowe's Motor Speedway. The race aired on Speed, and Skinner said of Rue & Ziffra's sponsorship, "We all know they don't practice law up here, but Speed has great coverage, and this is about keeping things local." Rue & Ziffra Marketing & Advertising Manager Shane Snipes said there are a "ton of people who follow Mike in Daytona and in Orange and Osceola counties." Snipes added that the sponsorship is a "one-time opportunity, but 'maybe the start of a long-term relationship'" (NEWS-JOURNALONLINE.com, 5/15).

    IN THE PITS: ESPN.com's John Schwarb noted the sponsorship relationship between Kenny Bernstein Racing (KBR) and A-B "had been synonymous in NHRA drag racing; in fact, in all of motorsports," as "no active team/sponsor combination could match the 30 years that KBR had with" A-B. But when A-B announced that it "would step away from drag racing both as a team and league sponsor, the team's future was tossed into the air." The KBR team does not "lack confidence on race weekends, but navigating the sponsorship maze, especially in a recession, is another challenge." KBR Owner Kenny Bernstein said that the team has "'one or two sponsors on first base, with another three or four in the dugout,' and that it's still early enough in the season not to panic for 2010" (ESPN.com, 5/14).

    DISTANCING THEMSELVES: BLOOMBERG NEWS' Dan Baynes reported the "sex scandal that has embroiled Australia's National Rugby League is prompting sponsors, including Coca-Cola Amatil Ltd., to revise their contracts and may deter other companies from backing the popular sport." A documentary that aired May 11 detailed a group sex incident that occurred involving players in '02, and sponsors are "concerned their image may be tarnished by players' off-field behaviour." Coca-Cola Amatil spokesperson Sally Loane: "We want to protect our brand and our name. ... We don't want our sponsorship diminished and we certainly don't want adverse publicity against us as sponsors" (BLOOMBERG NEWS, 5/16).

    TEEN SPIRIT: Coca-Cola is searching for 10 U.S. teenagers who exemplify positive living in their community to carry the Olympic Flame in the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Torch Relay when it visits Calgary January 18-19, 2010. U.S. gymnast Shawn Johnson and taekwondo athlete Steven Lopez, both Coca-Cola "Ambassadors of Active Living," will join the 10 teen torchbearers in Calgary (Coca-Cola).

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