SBD/April 6, 2012/Marketing and Sponsorship

The Spirit Of St. Louis: FS Midwest Nearly Sold Out For MLB Cardinals Games

Despite rate increase, companies and brands want to be associated with Cardinals
FS Midwest has "sold a majority of advertising slots" for its slate of MLB Cardinals telecasts this season, according to Amir Kurtovic of the ST. LOUIS BUSINESS JOURNAL. The station also raised ad prices "about 10 percent this season, cashing in on the record ratings and World Series success of last season." Despite the rate increase, there "doesn't seem to be a shortage of companies and brands that want to be associated with the Cardinals." FS Midwest GM & Senior VP Jack Donovan said that interest in the Cardinals "is always strong, but even more so this year." Donovan: "The number of commercials vary game to game, but for the most part we are about 90 percent sold out." Media buyers indicated that the rate of a 30-second ad on FS Midwest "can range anywhere from $500 to about $2,500." Kurtovic noted the RSN "garnered the most viewers in prime time on 74 nights last season, out of 104 night game broadcasts, and had the second best local-market TV ratings in all MLB markets." St. Louis-based ad agency Hoffman Lewis VP & Client Service Dir Tyler Martin said, "St. Louis consumers want sports, and if your product warrants it and your budgets can support it, I would put you ads in sports" (BIZJOURNALS.com, 4/4).

BANK ON IT: The Cardinals Thursday announced that they have signed a three-year sponsorship deal with First National Bank of St. Louis. The deal designates First National as the Hometown Bank of the Cardinals and will enable it to offer Cardinals Checking in the St. Louis area. The checking program includes incentives such as specially designed Cardinals checks, a checkbook cover and a Cardinals Debit MasterCard. New customers also will get 10% discounts on merchandise and online ticket purchases (Cardinals).
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