SBD/June 24, 2011/Marketing and Sponsorship

Companies Going To Great Lengths To Promote Relationships With Wimbledon

FedEx' display at Southfields promotes company's Wimbledon sponsorship
FedEx, Sony, IBM and Italian coffee brand Lavazza are "just some of the brands promoting their relationship with the 125th Wimbledon tennis tournament," according to Maisie McCabe of CAMPAIGNLIVE.co.uk. FedEx "has turned Southfields, the nearest London Underground station to Wimbledon, into a lawn tennis court in activity booked through outdoor media owner CBS Outdoor." The campaign, "planned and bought" by media agency PHD and Aegis Media specialist Posterscope, "dominates the whole station" and uses the tagline "Live to deliver." IBM is "using digital outdoor to promote its relationship with Wimbledon." At London Heathrow Airport, the company is "using JCDecaux's digital airport panels to keep passengers informed of the latest scores and is fitting the updates to the upcoming flight schedule." Also, Sony is "using national press ads in The Independent, The Times, The Guardian and The Telegraph to promote its coverage of the Wimbledon finals and the men's semi-final in 3D." The campaign "follows the release of an online video parodying Fallon's 'balls' TV ad for Sony Bravia." McCabe notes Lavazza, the official coffee of Wimbledon, is "planning to hand out free coffees to people queuing for tickets" Friday and Saturday. As part of the promotion, former tennis players Pat Cash and Annabelle Croft will be joining the company Friday to "play a game of racketball and will then spend some time in the Lavazza Lounge" (CAMPAIGNLIVE.co.uk, 6/24).

DOESN'T MATTER IF YOU WIN OR LOSE: In London, Neil Harman writes Li Na's second-round exit from Wimbledon "will have no impact on her earning power." Next month, the French Open champion will "start to wear a patch promoting a Chinese company that will be the biggest deal" she has done. Li's agent, IMG's Max Eisenbud, was "instrumental in putting together the deals that have established" Maria Sharapova's marketability, and he was "in the perfect place to make the maximum from Li's success in Paris." Eisenbud said, "The win just meant so much in Asia and there are a number of western companies and brands who have seen it as a way to get into China. We already had deals with Rolex and Haagen-Dazs and now Mercedes, and there is a new China deal in the offing that will dwarf those" (LONDON TIMES, 6/24).
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