Toyota To Pull Superimposed On-Field Ads After Backlash From 49ers Fans
Toyota "won't show the 'Toyota Red Zone' anymore" during NFL preseason broadcasts, according to Susanna Kim of ABC NEWS. Toyota, the 49ers' exclusive auto partner, had its ad superimposed in "giant red letters showing 'Toyota Red Zone'" during Thursday's 49ers-Ravens game. Toyota spokesperson Sona Iliffe-Moon said, "We've heard fan feedback and it's not our intention to distract from the joy of the game. ... During the remainder of the 49ers' pre-season games, fans and viewers should no longer see the Toyota Red Zone once the ball is snapped." NFL VP/Communications Brian McCarthy said that superimposed on-field advertising would "take place during the pre-season only" (ABCNEWS.com, 8/9). ADWEEK's Sam Thielman noted the Northern California Toyota Dealers Association "created the scaled back campaign as part of its multiyear deal" with the 49ers and Levi's Stadium. The car dealers "also set up a Toyota Plaza inside the new stadium and committed to supporting the 49ers’ community outreach programs." Meanwhile, NFL Network "plans to continue allowing red-zone advertising throughout the preseason but not during the regular season" (ADWEEK.com, 8/11).