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Volume 24 No. 177

Marketing and Sponsorship

Fox Sports "hopes to become a more formidable force" in college football, and with that in mind, Wieden+Kennedy, N.Y., "went for drama in its first work for the network since it parted ways with ESPN after 25 years," according to Poggi & Crupi of AD AGE. The ad campaign, dubbed "Don't Look Ahead," will highlight the "intense rivalries and deep passions" of teams and fans, "telling viewers that 'every game is everything.'" The campaign looks to focus on "each week's game, not just the College Football Playoff." There will be "17 different spots, including one spot for every Big Ten school" (ADAGE.com, 8/10). ADWEEK's Patrick Coffee noted actor Michael Kelly, who portrays Doug Stamper on Netflix' "House of Cards," provides the spots' "voiceover talent." It is already known two spots are focused on the early season Texas-USC matchup and Thanksgiving weekend Ohio State-Michigan game. All the ads in the campaign will "run nationally, with some of the school-specific work targeted on a regional and time-sensitive basis." W+K Creative Dir Gary Van Dzura said, "The more you target a specific team, the more they share among themselves, and the more traction it gets in that part of the country.” Coffee noted W+K "pitched these ads as a package, and Fox embraced the idea." While the team spots are "not yet live, the anthem does include snippets, like the Michigan State logo pocked with arrows" and a train representing Purdue (ADWEEK.com, 8/10).



VERY INTERESTING
: Comedian Rob Riggle has teamed up with Dos Equis to star in a new CFP ad campaign. Riggle, appearing alongside the actor portraying the "Most Interesting Man in the World," will be searching for the "Most Interesting Fan of College Football" all season long. As part of the effort, one fan will be inducted into the College Football HOF with their own life-size statue (THE DAILY).

The Bears signed movie and video game retailer Redbox to a sponsorship that will give fans free rentals by attending home games. Home game attendees can take home a promo code for a free one-night rental when they follow instructions on more than 800 TVs that make up Soldier Field’s in-stadium TV network. Redbox also will receive two signage positions on the East side of the stadium bowl inside Soldier Field. Redbox also has a sponsorship with the Seahawks, its only other one in sports. In recognition of the Bears deal, Redbox released its picks for the top 10 football movies of all time: “Brian’s Song,” “Rudy,” “North Dallas Forty,” “Remember the Titans,” “Heaven Can Wait,” “Jerry Maguire,” “Draft Day,” “Invincible,” “The Blind Side” and “We Are Marshall.” Neither the Bears nor Redbox used a marketing agency.

KT Tape has bought the presenting sponsorship of the USOC-produced video series "Working Out with Team USA" through '20. The first 30-minute episode airs Sunday on NBCSN and will be followed by 40 online videos posted weekly through the '18 PyeongChang Games. The videos document the private training regimens of six KT-sponsored Olympians and Paralympians. The series is an example of the USOC's efforts to create original content that can be sold as additional sponsorship assets during the long downtime between Olympics. Chobani bought the presenting sponsorship in '16. Terms of the presenting sponsorship were not disclosed. KT Tape, which in April extended its licensee deal with the USOC through '20, has always had a very literal marketing approach to the Games, building off of awareness generated by athletes wearing the brightly colored tape on their bodies during televised competition. KT Tape CEO Greg Venner said branded content can keep that message up in between Olympic Games. “It takes the groundwork we were able to lay with our experience in Rio and the association with the USOC to the next level, and visually show what role we play and how we help athletes as they’re training,” Venner said. Athletes in the first series include beach volleyball player Kerri Walsh Jennings, marathoner Meb Keflezighi, Paralympic skier Oksana Masters, speedskaters Thomas Hong and Mia Manganello and skier Julia Mancuso.