SBD/Issue 35/Sponsorships, Advertising & Marketing

DC Lottery Breaks Commercial Featuring "Snyder" Character

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The DC Lottery recently filmed a commercial featuring a character named Snyder "being tarred and feathered," but rather than "running from the connection" to Redskins Owner Dan Snyder, the lottery "decided to have some fun with it," according to Dan Steinberg of the WASHINGTON POST. MDB Communications President & CEO Cary Hatch, whose ad agency is behind the 30-second spot, claims that the character named Snyder is not connected to the Redskins owner, but rather an "inside joke" for her son and husband, coincidentally named Doug Snyder. Hatch said, "We thought it was safe." In the ad, Snyder -- the only named character -- decides to join his company's office lottery pool, and is "tarred and feathered as part of his recruitment." Steinberg notes people in DC "started using that last name an awful lot around the water cooler" in recent weeks with the Redskins' struggles, and DC Lottery and MDB execs "realized that in this particular climate, in this particular town, it was going to be hard to ignore the sight of a man named Snyder being tarred and feathered." However, instead of editing the spot, set to debut next week, the lottery advertised an invitation to "See Snyder get tarred & feathered" at www.DCLottery.com. The ad earlier this week got "more than 3,000 page views in 48 hours" after being linked on TheBigLead.com. Hatch, a longtime Redskins fan, said, "Sometimes timing is everything in life, right? We never could have foreseen this. ... We shot this commercial a month ago, prior to the meltdown. Sometimes things happen that ignite, and this would be one of them" (WASHINGTON POST, 10/30).

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