TEAMS HOPE FOR BEST AS SELLING OF TICKETS AND ADS CONTINUE
The efforts of the Braves to keep fans and sponsors during
the baseball strike is examined in the current issue of BUSINESS
WEEK. Only one sponsor, candymaker Leaf Inc., has canceled all
ties for '95 while "stalwarts" Anheuser-Busch, Coca-Cola, and
Delta Air Lines are "proceeding with full sponsorship programs."
Still, "half of last season's 105 backers are still undecided."
Ticket sales are "more promising," since season-ticket holders
who do not renew will "lose their claim to priority seating" when
the new Olympic Stadium opens for baseball in '97. Such "strong-
armed tactics" have helped the Braves sell 20,000 seats, down
only one-third from last year. TBS, the Braves' station (owned
by Braves Owner Ted Turner), will broadcast a full schedule of
Braves games, even with replacement players. But the network
"could be liable for costly paybacks or makeup advertising" if
viewers don't watch. Kevin O'Malley, Senior VP/Programming at
TBS Sports: "Advertisers will ultimately end up paying only for
what they get" (David Greising, BUSINESS WEEK, 3/6 issue).
TIGER TOWN: The Tigers are carrying out one of their most
aggressive marketing campaigns in years with the theme, "Tiger
Baseball: There's No Place Like Home." The theme was created by
Young & Rubicam. The Tigers have about 75 advertisers and "not
one has said it won't sponsor the Tigers this year." Sponsors
will be able to renegotiate its contract if replacements are used
(Steve Raphael, CRAIN'S DETROIT BUSINESS, 2/26 issue).
WOULDN'T YOU LIKE TO BE A SPONSOR, TOO? According to INSIDE
MEDIA, expect Dr Pepper to pull out of its plans to advertise
during the game to be held at The Ballpark at Arlington if
replacement All-Stars are used. Dr Pepper's HQs are located in
Dallas (INSIDE MEDIA, 2/28 issue).