SBD/Issue 126/Sponsorships, Advertising & MarketingPrint All
CBS sold out of its inventory for March Madness on Demand, "bringing in about $37[M] in online ad sales, up 20% from the year before," according to Michael Learmonth of AD AGE. The net has "sold as many ads for live web coverage as it does on TV, taking CBS a little closer to the holy grail: earning the same revenue per viewer regardless of platform." The "key for CBS is that it's found revenue above and beyond what it earns on TV." The difference in overall revenues between MMOD and TV is "more than justified when you consider 7.5 million people watched the NCAA tournament online last year compared with 130 million on TV," but unlike TV, digital revenues are "steadily growing." CBS this year added Capital One as a presenting sponsor of MMOD, in addition to AT&T and Coca-Cola, and it also "took another step in allowing viewers to access the streams pretty much wherever they happen to be on the web, including Yahoo Sports, Facebook" and ESPN. CBS is "charging for the games on mobile, and is charging $9.99 for its March Madness iPhone app, up from $4.99 last year, currently the No. 2 paid sports app in Apple's app store." Viewers get "fewer ads online than on TV" with most online services, but "not so with March Madness where CBS sells the ads in virtually the same way as TV, except video advertisers get display that appears when their ad is running." CBSSports.com Senior VP/Ad Sales Rich Calacci: "This is extraordinarily similar to selling TV and that's a good thing" (AD AGE, 3/15 issue).
A NEW SOCIAL SETTING: USA TODAY's Bruce Horovitz reports some of the "nation's savviest marketers are turning the college basketball's championship tournament into something more akin to an online hoops party" through social media outlets. The NCAA tourney serves as a "social-media marketing event, a chance to coax consumers to play with their brands." CBSSports.com Senior VP & GM Jason Kint: "It's the ultimate sporting event for social media." Horovitz notes Coke Zero is "sponsoring a Department of Fannovation Brain Bracket asking fans to vote online for the best idea to improve the tournament." MillerCoors has "launched an iPhone app, Tip 'n Spin, in which folks earn points by balancing a basketball on a Miller Lite bottle." Meanwhile, Applebee's is offering $1M to "whomever picks the winners of all 63 tourney games via its Facebook page with Twitter updates" (USA TODAY, 3/15).
WTA Informs Players They Must Wear Sony
Ericsson Patch On Their Chest, Sleeve Or Collar
The Sony Ericsson WTA Tour is “stepping up its requirement that players wear a clothing patch with the tour’s name” even as the name of the title sponsor “will be dropped from the official circuit moniker later this year,” according to sources cited by Daniel Kaplan of SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL. The tour also has informed players they can “no longer wear the patch on their shoulder straps.” Instead, the patch must be “worn on a player’s chest, sleeve or collar.” A tour spokesperson said that there is “no more than the usual tweaking that occurs normally with any rule and that there is not some sense of stepped up enforcement of the patch rule, despite what several tennis sources have said.” Many players’ clothing contracts “preclude them from wearing the patch, setting up a divide between players who wear it and those who do not.” Players with deals that are “so-called ‘clean’ contracts, meaning they cannot put any logo on their dress or shirt, are exempt from the tour’s patch program.” Most Nike contracts “are clean.” The “latest twist, however, comes as a bit of a surprise to some, because Sony Ericsson is reducing its financial commitment to the tour” (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, 3/15 issue).
PINK Brand Will Feature 11
MLB Teams' Logos In New Line
MLB is "partnering with Victoria's Secret's PINK brand to take aim at young women during the 2010 season with a new fashion line" featuring logos from 11 teams, according to Michael McCarthy of USA TODAY. The VS PINK brand "caters to college-age women with bras, lingerie and sleepwear." The MLB-themed line of "crystallized hats, jerseys, T-shirts, hoodies, sweatpants, tanks, shorts and fleeces will roll out in more than 100 Victoria's Secret stores in 11 markets Tuesday." The line will also be sold at VictoriasSecret.com. Some MLB players "will appear alongside Victoria's Secret models as they tout the line in the 11 markets." MLB Exec VP/Business Tim Brosnan is "hoping fashion models will wear the gear at the annual Victoria's Secret fashion show." Brosnan: "After we do the 11 teams, there will then be demand for all 30." He added, "This is simple: We believe there's an opportunity with our female fan base" (USA TODAY, 3/15).