September 28, 2010
Advertising Week is going on in New York City right now — what, you're not there? they must have lost your invitation in the mail — and the NASCAR contingent is doing its best to get the sport in front of as many advertising-minded decision-makers as possible.
NASCAR and advertising go together like peas n' carrots ... no, wait, that's not right; NASCAR and advertising go together like a desperate high-school boy and the indifferent girl he'd like to get up the guts to ask out. So it's no surprise that NASCAR sent its top pitchman, one Michael Waltrip, to get out the word that rolling billboards are still a good investment.
"We're in a little bit of a lull now, and we're taking a lot of abuse for it," Waltrip said on a panel. But he noted that the companies who back a Waltrip ride are "more than just my sponsors, they're partners." The ad folks may not yet know what a plugging machine Waltrip is, but they got a full dose of how well he can get the word out about his backers.
NASCAR itself took out an ad in the event's program — advertising at a conference about advertising; we're really down the rabbit hole here — which pointed out that "With over 75 million loyal fans ... a NASCAR partnership ensures every weekend your consumers will have a rooting interest in your brands when it's endorsed by their favorite driver."
This is all very high-level please-trust-us-with-your-money stuff, but the bottom line is that NASCAR has to prove to potential sponsors that it's a good value for the money. The economy won't stay down forever — the recession ended a year ago, remember? — and when companies look for places to start spending again, it's definitely in NASCAR's best interests to be at the front of the line.
NASCAR Drives Sponsor Pitch [Media Daily News]
Note: That photo has nothing to do with Advertising Week. But it's got Waltrip in it. Go Braves!
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