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Volume 24 No. 134

Sponsorships Advertising Marketing

     The Budweiser ads featuring three talking frogs was named
the most popular TV ad campaign for the first three months of
'95, according to a survey by Video Storyboard Tests, Inc.  The
group interviewed more than 4,500 TV viewers.  Campaigns "that
debuted during the Super Bowl helped several brands," including
PepsiCo, which was No. 2 on the list.  The "Nothing Else is a
Pepsi" campaign features a young boy sucked into a bottle.  Coca-
Cola, which was No. 1 in '94, fell to No. 5.  Dave Vadehra,
President of Video Storyboard Tests, said the "Always Coca-Cola"
campaign has "become dated very fast."  Three brands off the list
included Taster's Choice, Energizer, and Campbell's Soup, which
had Nancy Kerrigan as a spokesperson last year.  The top ten TV
campaigns of the first quarter:  Budweiser, Pepsi, McDonald's,
Little Caesars, Coca-Cola, Pizza Hut, Bud Light, AT&T, Doritos,
Nike (Harr Berkowitz, NEWSDAY, 6/9).

     Reebok is updating its Planet Reebok marketing concept with
the introduction of a design and in-store merchandising program
called "Mobius."  Rebook's new ad and point-of-purchase tagline
is reportedly "This is my Planet."  The Mobius line, which will
include all "performance product categories," will feature a
campaign by Leo Burnett, USA next spring..... Quaker Oats is
"breaking a $15 million pan-European Gatordade sports drink
campaign by TBWA," presenting the drink as a "mainstream youth
brand, rather than an older, sports-players' brand" (AD AGE
ONLINE, 6/12). ....Athlete's Foot is looking to place stores
inside bigger retailers, according to CEO Pierre Serralta.  The
chain is looking to join with several department stores and could
open the new outlets in '96 (ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 6/11).... MLB
Properties announced the names of two licensees who will be
manufacturing milk caps and related products bearing the marks
and logos of the 28 teams.  Russ Berrie & Co. has developed a MLB
Grand Slammer Milk Cap Game, and A.C. Sales, a new MLB licensee,
has developed different collector packs.  The merchandise will
available July 1 (MLB)....ESPN's Keith Olbermann:  "Of all the
strange sponsors names ever given to a sporting event, except for
maybe the women's golf tournament named for Jamie Farr, perhaps
this weekend's NASCAR stop is the strangest.  The Teamwork 500 is
co-sponsored by General Motors and the United Auto Workers union.
Grievances, they're wonderful" ("SportsCenter," 6/11)....ESPN's
Mike Milbury reported that Nike is donating 200 sets of hockey
equipment to Russia to help that country's underfunded hockey
development programs ("National Hockey Night," 6/10)....Converse
has cut 200 jobs at its Lumberton, NC, plant because of "soft
domestic sales of some canvas footwear and a weak" U.S. retail
market (N.Y. TIMES, 6/12).  Converse will also reportedly have a
"major marketing agreement" soon with the Cowboys, as they will
feature Converse-branded Cowboys apparel to arrive in stores in
late fall (AD AGE ONLINE, 6/12)...PepsiCo has begun "preliminary
testing of a carbonated beverage called Josta."  The product is
made from the Brazilian guarana berry, has a high caffeine
content, and has "been used for centuries by Amazon tribes as a
stimulant and appetite suppresant.  Brazilians also praise the
berry's use as an aphrodisiac, although such qualities have never
been proven" (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 6/12)....Sporting Goods stocks
are examined by Steve Halpern in the MIAMI HERALD.  Sporting
goods stocks "have been trailing the pack recently, so buy in now
and you'll be taking a victory lap next year."  Among the picks
profiled:  Rawlings, Johnson Worldwide, Nike, First Team Sports,
and CML Group (MIAMI HERALD, 6/10).

     MCI's investment to secure naming rights to the proposed new
arena in DC "could be a bargain," according to the WASHINGTON
BUSINESS JOURNAL.  Although MCI CEO Bert Roberts refused to
reveal what they are paying, sources close to negotiations said
it was "more than the $10 million up-front payment" Bullets/Caps
Owner Abe Pollin was seeking. April Young, a sports marketing
professor at George Mason Univ., called arena naming rights a
"very important symbol in MCI's desire to be seen as more user-
friendly."  Young: "The hardest marketing problem of all is
breaking through the clutter and this gives MCI a chance to do
that."  More from Young:  "This is a really diffentent direction
for MCI -- sports facilities have a unifying effect across a
region."  An editorial in the BUSINESS JOURNAL calls MCI's
investment "a singular act of courage and solidifies the
telecommunications company's presence in Washington  (WASHINGTON
BUSINESS JOURNAL, 6/15 issue).
     FRIENDS AND FAMILY AD RANK: MCI's "Friends and Family" ads
are surveyed in USA TODAY'S Ad Track.  32% of those surveyed
dislike the MCI ads, and only 42% have seen the ad (USA TODAY,

     The Kemper Open, played this past weekend in Avenel, MD, has
lost "three major sponsorships, costing the tournament more than
$100,00 in revenue," according to John Lombardo of the WASHINGTON
BUSINESS JOURNAL.   A "primary" reason for the loss of corporate
support is the U.S. Senior Open, which will be played next month
at Betehsda's Congressional Country Club.  Kemper Open Chair Ben
Brundred admitted they have "lost a couple of national companies
to the Senior Open.  Companies that are usually with us and the
Senior Open this year couldn't do both ... We will make up for it
by cutting expenses."  At the Kemper, a corporate tent costs
$38,500 (no catering), while at the U.S. Senior Open, a tent
costs $75,000.  Lombardo writes, "as a result, the competition
for corporate dollars has become fierce among tournament
organizers as companies shop the tournaments to maximize their
entertainment investment."  In '97, the U.S. Open will be at
Congressional and Brundred is "already anticpating" an impact.
Brundred: "Since we will be going back-to-back, the national
sponsors will probably be going to Congressional and the local
companies will be staying with us" (WASHINGTON BUSINESS JOURNAL,
6/15 issue).
     PAYNE IN THE DUDS:  PGA star Payne Stewart's "signature NFL
garb may be due for a big change after next year," according to
Barker Davis of the WASHINGTON TIMES.  Stewart noted there is one
more year on his NFL deal:  "Originally the NFL wanted to target
the the golf audience for their merchandise, and they chose me as
their representative.  But it's been about eight years and I
don't know how much longer it's going to last" (WASHINGTON TIMES,

     The Rockets will unveil new uniforms along with a new logo
after the Finals, according to Sunday's HOUSTON CHRONICLE.
Rockets officials "won't say what the new uniforms will look
like," but a source familiar with the change said the logo is "a
red rocket orbiting a basketball."  The Rocket will have teeth.
The three new team colors are said to be red, "midnight blue, and
metallic silver."  The new look was designed by a fan whose idea
was picked among 5,000 contestants, and will be unveiled at the
NBA draft on June 28.  The team hopes the new apparel will be
available in stores shortly thereafter.  Before winning the NBA
title last year, the Rockets ranked 22nd out of 27 in apparel
sales, but last year they rose to 9th.  John Thomas, Rockets
VP/Business Ops, said research showed that their merchandise "was
historically among the poorest selling in the NBA ... They (the
retailers) all told us that the logo was tired, old, and the
colors, patricularly the yellow, were not fashionable to wear."
The Rockets will join the Sonics and Hawks in introducing new
uniforms for next season (Asin & Williams, HOUSTON CHRONICLE,