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Volume 21 No. 1
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Trimming it here, growing it there: Great Clips moves money from race titles to Kahne

Great Clips will shift its NASCAR spending next year by dropping two Nationwide Series race title sponsorships in order to sponsor Kasey Kahne’s No. 5 car in three Sprint Cup Series races.

The hair salon company has sponsored Kahne since he made his Busch Series debut in 2001, but it never sponsored him at the Sprint Cup level until buying a co-primary sponsorship with for this year’s Nov. 4 race at Texas Motor Speedway.

Great Clips will sponsor Kahne in three Sprint Cup races.
The company saw enough value in that deal to buy three primary races — Bristol Motor Speedway in March, Indianapolis Motor Speedway in July and New Hampshire Motor Speedway in September — with Kahne at the Sprint Cup level.

Sources valued the three-race deal with Kahne at more than $1 million. The agreement shrinks the number of available races on Hendrick Motorsports’ No. 5 car from seven to four for the 2013 season.

Great Clips, which has 1,300 franchisees and more than 20,000 stylists, will continue its full-season primary sponsorship of Turner Motorsports’ Nationwide Series program. Kahne will drive in 10 Nationwide races next year for the brand and Turner.

NASCAR has given Great Clips a 3-to-1 return in media value over dollars invested, according to Terri Miller, Great Clips’ vice president of marketing and communications. The company put its NASCAR program up for review before a board of franchisees and showed the board other options for sports sponsorships such as college basketball and the NFL. The board voted to extend its NASCAR sponsorships through 2014.

“For the money we invest, NASCAR wins out over those in ratings, popularity, geography, seasonality,” Miller said. “To add the layer of Sprint Cup races on top of a powerful program is an exciting, emotional and smart business decision.”

Miller said that Great Clips plans to develop a commercial for next year that features Kahne. It has partnered with History Channel to feature Kahne converting his garage into a man cave. It also will run a show car program and promote its ties to Kahne at retail.

Great Clips works with Minneapolis-based Compass Point Media, a media buying and strategy agency, and Periscope, a creative and social media agency, on its NASCAR sponsorship.