SBD/December 2, 2013/Marketing and Sponsorship

L'Oreal Men's Brand Inks Three-Year Deal With NHL, Will Present "NHL Life" Video Series

L'Oreal Paris Men Expert has entered into a three-year partnership with the NHL beginning with the '13-14 season, marking the beauty brand's first sports sponsorship. The brand will encourage NHL fans to "up their game" on and off the ice via a digital campaign and an exclusive NHL.com video series. The brand will present "NHL Life," an NHL.com exclusive online video series that offers fans a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the lives of various on-ice and front-office NHL personalities. The series will launch on Nov. 28. The partnership also includes a sponsorship of NHL Weekly Pick 'Em powered by L'Oreal Men Expert, a weekly exclusive contest in which fans choose the outcomes of Saturday NHL match-ups (L'Oreal). L'Oreal Product Manager Pascale Desroches said that while Men Expert has "dabbled in sports with street-level marketing around events like Formula 1 racing, those efforts were more 'local and sporadic.'" Desroches said, "What we want to do with Men Expert is build a long-term link and conversation. We felt we needed to connect with men in a different way." "NHL Life" will be "comprised of 3-5 minute vignettes," and the series will be "updated twice a month and run through the NHL playoffs." Desroches said that the program "constitutes the biggest marketing effort of the year for the Men Expert brand." L’Oreal also plans to "activate the sponsorship at store level, where it will use the NHL shield and other league marks in both physical and digital signage." The brand also will "have a presence at NHL events" including the NHL Faceoff event and the '14 Tim Hortons NHL Heritage Classic. L’Oreal is "one of two new partners for the NHL this season, following its recent acquisition of the distilled spirits category" with Diageo Canada’s Johnnie Walker and Crown Royal brands (MARKETINGMAG.ca, 11/27).

'TIS THE SEASON: The national ad campaign for the '14 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic between the Maple Leafs and Red Wings debuted Friday during NBC's broadcast of the '13 Discover NHL Thanksgiving Showdown, which featured the Rangers and Bruins. The campaign also will run across digital, radio, print, in-arena, retail/in-store point-of-purchase, mobile and social media platforms with the official hashtag #WinterClassic (NHL).
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