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SBD/January 30, 2012/Marketing and SponsorshipPrint All
Aaron Rodgers is the most marketable player in the NFL, according to an exclusive survey of sports business execs, analysts and media members conducted by THE DAILY. Rodgers finished first by a narrow margin over Tom Brady, with Peyton Manning, Drew Brees and Tim Tebow rounding out the top five. Overall, it is still quarterbacks that attract the attention of Madison Avenue. The list was dominated by signal-callers, who garnered each of the top five positions and eight of the top 11. QBs also accounted for 12 of the 26 names mentioned on ballots. Engage Marketing Founder Kevin Adler said in terms of marketing, the past season has been "without a doubt, the year of the quarterback." Rodgers and Brady were neck-and-neck, with Brady actually garnering more votes for first place (15 to Rodgers' 12). But Rodgers had a slight edge due to the fact that his name appeared on 41 of 50 ballots, while Brady appeared on 36 ballots. Click here for the entire list.
METHODOLOGY: The survey was distributed to corporate brand managers, marketing and branding executives, agencies, sports business professors and football media, who were asked to list, in order, the top five most marketable players in the NFL. Points were awarded on a five-point scale, with a player awarded five points for a first-place vote, four points for second place, etc.RANK
ATHLETE1 Packers QB Aaron Rodgers2 Patriots QB Tom Brady3 Colts QB Peyton Manning4 Saints QB Drew Brees5 Broncos QB Tim Tebow6 Steelers S Troy Polamalu7 Giants QB Eli Manning8 Panthers QB Cam Newton9 Packers LB Clay MatthewsT10 Ravens LB Ray LewisT10 Cowboys QB Tony Romo
UGGs is one of only two brands Brady represents
nationally, the other being Under Armour
Even without playing a down this season,
Peyton Manning remains relevant as a pitchman
Jockey was an early adopter of Tebowmania,
signing QB to a three-year deal in July '10
One expert calls Brees' family-themed spot for
Vicks VapoRub "marketing gold"
Head-scratcher? Polamalu's distinctive look makes
his tie-in with Head & Shoulders anything but
Editorial Assistant Lewis Martin contributed to this report.
While there will be “plenty of ads for the usual cheap thrills like beer, soda, snacks and movies, a surge of automobile ads and the first Super Bowl real estate ad in two decades indicate that advertisers are betting that the economy is strong enough for big-ticket purchases in 2012,” according to Carolyn Said of the S.F. CHRONICLE. S.F.- based ad agency Pereira & O'Dell Chief Creative Officer P.J. Pereira said, “When cars and real estate (companies) are advertising, it feels like a very good sign of recovery.” Lexus VP/Marketing & Dealer Development Brian Smith added, “We, like many of the automotive companies, are feeling much more bullish about this year and next year.” Said reported Century 21 is "sponsoring its first-ever Super Bowl ad,” which features Donald Trump, Pro Football HOFer Deion Sanders and Gold Medal-winning U.S. speedskater Apolo Anton Ohno. Century 21 CMO Bev Thorne: “It has been 21 years since any other real estate company advertised in the Super Bowl. We think this is a perfect time to signal our confidence in the dream of homeownership." Said noted advertisers “are offering sneak [peeks] online and even in movie theaters” instead of unveiling commercials during the game. Goodby, Silverstein & Partners co-Chair and Creative Dir Jeff Goodby said, “It used to be you'd guard ads carefully [in advance]. Some advertisers like Budweiser would have special private viewings of their Super Bowl ad; it was a titillating inside thing to get invited to. Now people see them on YouTube before the game." Said noted about “one-third of Super Bowl advertisers will offer a shortcut for viewers to visit them online without typing in a URL.” Their ads “will work with smart-phone app Shazam” (S.F. CHRONICLE, 1/29).
FIVE ON FIVE: Hyundai today announced it will launch five total ads around Sunday's game, including two pregame spots, one in a pre-kick time slot and two during the actual game broadcast. The two in-game ads, which were developed by Hyundai's in-house agency, Innocean Worldwide Americas, will highlight performance characteristics. "Cheetah," a 30-second spot slated for the first quarter, features a caged cheetah set to race a new Veloster Turbo on a long stretch of open road. "Think Fast," a 30-second spot set for the fourth quarter, introduces a character that will star in Hyundai's social media efforts named Bob (Hyundai). MARKETING DAILY's Karl Greenberg reports Hyundai previously has "tended to hammer home messages about vehicle durability and reliability," but the automaker is "doing more humorous creative this time." A 60-second pre-kick spot will feature a "slightly more offbeat approach than what it did in last year's game." The '11 ad featured "real employees at its Montgomery, Ala. assembly plant," and this year's commercial again will show "that facility and its people." However, this year they "are in an absurd elaboration of Hyundai's take on 'If at first you don't succeed'" (MARKETING DAILY, 1/30).
In Colorado Springs, Brian Gomez noted Gold Medal-winning snowboarder Shaun White “has turned into the marketing icon of the action-sports world.” White signed his first sponsorship deal at 7, and as he prepares for the '14 Sochi Games, he "counts big-money corporate pacts with BFGoodrich, Burton, Hewlett-Packard, Oakley, Target and Ubisoft.” He recently signed a "seven-figure endorsement with Stride gum, and in August, he scored an agreement with Vail Resorts in which he co-designed his own halfpipe at Lake Tahoe.” Simply by “keeping down his current track, White continues to see his stock soar.” Despite his popularity, Gomez noted White “doesn’t have a monopoly, as Nike, The North Face, Toyota and Visa have spent their advertising dollars elsewhere, with mixed results” (GAZETTE.com, 1/27).
CAM STEPS OUT: In Charlotte, Joseph Person wrote NFL Panthers QB Cam Newton, who finished eighth in THE DAILY's list of most marketable NFL players, will “split his offseason between Charlotte and Atlanta.” IMG's Carlos Fleming, who handles Newton's marketing portfolio, said that Newton “plans to be more visible in the Charlotte community this year.” Fleming: "We're all doing our due diligence as to where the needs are in the market. A lot of the stuff that he'll do, he won't do just to get the feel-good attention in the media. ... A lot of it he'll do without the cameras." But Fleming knows Newton “can increase his charitable impact and marketing reach by building on his success and turning the Panthers into a consistent winner” (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 1/29).
GETTING A NEW LOOK: WORLD FOOTBALL INSIDER’s Matthew Grayson reported tortilla brand Maseca “will sponsor the shirts of Mexico’s national team through at least 2014.” The new look “debuted Wednesday night during a 3-1 friendly win over Venezuela played in Houston.” Mexico will “also sport the new shirts for the 2013 Confederations Cup, CONCACAF Gold Cup and qualifiers for the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil” (WORLDFOOTBALLINSIDER.com, 1/27).
FUZZY FOOTWEAR: In Boston, gossip columnists Shanahan & Goldstein reported Patriots players Friday “returned to their lockers to discover boxes of Uggs for every player.” Although QB Tom Brady is an endorser for the brand’s “casual footwear, outwear, and accessories, it’s not clear who put the boots … in the locker room” (BOSTON GLOBE, 1/28). ESPN’s Wendi Nix said of Brady, “He does the UGGs advertising. I suspect he got a deal.” ESPN's Herm Edwards: "Buy them a car, Tom. You got enough money” (“NFL 32,” ESPN2, 1/27).