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Volume 24 No. 156

Marketing and Sponsorship

The WTA today fully launched its global "40 Love" ad campaign that celebrates the organization's 40th anniversary and includes print, TV and digital elements. The print element, under the tagline "Forty Years of Breaking Barriers. Thank you for inspiring us," pairs images of five current women's tennis players with those of past stars in a series of one-page ads. Billie Jean King narrates two TV spots: the 60-second "Time Flies" and "Give," which comes in both 30- and 60-second versions. Chermayeff & Geismar & Haviv, N.Y., created the print ad campaign as well as the "40 Love" logo, which launched earlier this year. The TV spots were produced by James Allen of Visual+Aid Inc., Portland. Allen also worked on the WTA's "Strong Is Beautiful" campaign that launched in '12.

Victoria Azarenka Steffi Graf
Li Na Chris Evert
Maria Sharpova Monica Seles
Serena Williams Billie Jean King
Venus Williams Martina Navratilova

GOING GLOBAL: The "40 Love" theme was first announced in January, and elements of it are being incorporated into the league's communications platform throughout the year. Now, with the launch of the full global ad campaign, ad materials will be made available to all WTA int'l tournaments and global TV partners, with spots airing in more than 80 countries. Spots also will run on CNN Int'l. The print ads will appear in tournament programs and also will be a component of several special print sections running in conjunction with high-profile tournaments. One such section will appear in the Sunday Times of London during Wimbledon. Other sections are expected to run concurrent with the U.S. Open and the season-ending BNP Paribas WTA Championships in Istanbul, with publications for those still to be decided.

LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY WOMEN: The campaign focuses attention not only on the league's history of athletic competition, but on its broader social impact as well. King in her narration notes the league "made history" and says players have been "determined to win, not just for ourselves, but for women everywhere." WTA CMO Andrew Walker said a goal of the ads was to highlight how the league's founding was "based on principles of equality and opportunity," and how that "spirit has carried on" through today's players. This is evidenced by current players thanking the WTA founders and stars who came before them. Walker: "That baton has passed, not only from a sporting perspective, but a social perspective, across four decades." 

Fox will televise Super Bowl XLVIII on Feb. 2, 2014, and to "get one of the valuable ad slots available during the network’s broadcast of the game, sponsors have been told they must buy time in other Fox Sports content ... with emphasis placed on Fox Sports 1," according to sources cited by Brian Steinberg of VARIETY. A source said that using the Super Bowl to gain ad support for other sports properties "has become de rigeur in recent years." Both NBC and CBS "tied the purchase of Super Bowl ad time to buying a broader package of ad inventory in sports content." This wrinkle "surfaces as all the broadcasters save ABC (whose parent already owns ESPN) develop flanking sports outlets on cable." A source said that Fox is "open to the purchase of ad packages that do not include FS1, such as the Super Bowl pre-game show ... but the emerging network is getting most of the spotlight in pitches to advertisers." Sources said that as a "result of the packaging, Fox’s Super Bowl ad sales may be pacing behind last year’s effort from CBS." A Fox Sports spokesperson in an e-mail said, "We’re anticipating a very healthy marketplace for the NY/NJ Super Bowl in 2014" (, 6/17).

USAA yesterday announced that Redskins QB Robert Griffin III will support the insurance and financial service provider's Official Military Appreciation Sponsorship of the NFL and the Redskins. The '13 season marks USAA's third year in the role, as well as the third iteration of the NFL Salute to Service initiative (USAA). In this week's SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, Terry Lefton notes Griffin, whose parents "were active in the Army, is the first active NFL player" signed by the company. USAA Exec Dir of Marketing Don Clark said Griffin "was at the top of our list." He added, "Obviously, his military ties are strong and impressive, and they're something that will further solidify our relationship with the NFL." Lefton notes USAA will use Griffin to "buttress its NFL ties and amp up its message of military appreciation with a multimedia campaign." Shooting is "expected to begin this week." Griffin's parents "are part of the deal as well and will be used in the marketing" (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, 6/17 issue).

SOUPER DUPER: Lefton reports Packers LB Clay Matthews replaces Giants WR Victor Cruz "in the latest version" of the Campbell's Chunky soup "Mama's Boys" campaign from Y&R, N.Y. Several of Matthews' Packers teammates also will "appear in the campaign." For Matthews, the Campbell's effort "marks another relationship with an NFL sponsor, as he is also aligned with league partners Verizon, Gillette, Nike and licensee Fathead." He has "non-league deals with Muscle Milk and Boucher Automotive Group in Milwaukee and a local memorabilia deal with Legends of the Field." Verizon, Gillette and Nike are "expected to use Matthews in national ads during the NFL season" (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, 6/17 issue).

Bat endorsement contracts "continue to be lucrative deals" for some college baseball programs "through cash compensation and free products," according to Jon Solomon of the BIRMINGHAM NEWS. Some deals "help schools pay the rising salaries for coaches." For the bat companies, the "goal is exposure of their products" as college baseball "continues to be televised more." The value of LSU's bat deal "nearly doubled thanks to its recent success." In an "old deal with Eason" that began in '07, LSU "received $150,000 per year." When the school "agreed to a new deal" with Wilson in '11, the school's annual pay "increased to $275,000." LSU grants Wilson the right to "use its team images to promote any product, pending approval by LSU." Wilson is the "title sponsor of one event annually" at the school. Elsewhere, South Carolina baseball coach Chad Holbrook "gives Rawlings exclusive right to use his name, voice or image in promoting Rawlings products." Holbrook "must make at least three promotional appearances for Rawlings each year." Meanwhile, Tennessee "grants Wilson the right to use NCAA-compliant images of the baseball team." The Tennessee web site "must have logos of Wilson and DeMarini and links to those company web sites." Wilson is the "title sponsor of one event annually at Tennessee" (, 6/17).

Golfer Justin Rose stands to gain at least US$1.57M from "bonuses in his sponsorship contracts" following U.S. Open victory, and his management also will "immediately" be able to increase his appearance fees, according to James Corrigan of the London TELEGRAPH. A source said Rose's bonuses "will not just rise for this year, but for the years ahead. Justin was already among the top earners in golf, but this will take him to a new level. When his contracts are up for renewal, the numbers will be huge." Corrigan noted Rose became the first Englishman to win the U.S. Open since Tony Jacklin in '70, and the first to win any major since Nick Faldo in '96. That makes Rose "hot property to appear at corporate days." The victory moved Rose to No. 3 in the World Golf Rankings, which also means "other bonuses will kick in on his contracts" (, 6/17).

TAKING HIS TIME: Rose this morning appeared on CNBC from the NYSE floor and said there has been a "lot of interest" from potential sponsors after winning the U.S. Open, but added he is "having a hard time catching up on my phone with family (and) friends." CNBC's Simon Hobbs noted Rose recently signed an endorsement deal with British Airways, and Rose said, "I'm very well looked after being one of their premier cardholders. I get definitely some fantastic treatment." He noted Jacklin after he won the U.S. Open "felt like he was dragged all around the world, doing all sorts of things that he thought he should be doing as a major champion." Rose: "He said actually that his major run ended very quickly because of how he handled that period because that's what he thought he needed to be capitalizing upon. ... That's a good lesson for me to really stay true to my game and always make every decision I make about what's best for my game." He noted he has to "relish" some of the potential endorsement opportunities, but "at the same time weigh them out very carefully" ("Squawk on the Street," CNBC, 6/18). Rose also appeared on NBC's "Today" and MSNBC's "Morning Joe" this morning.