The concept of using sports stars to market non-sport items has soared to new heights. Every corporation in the world is trying to get the edge over their competitors. The classic example is that of the “Cola Wars.” During the 1980s, Pepsi and Coca Cola began an advertising slugfest, in which Pepsi emerged victorious by using Madonna and Michael Jackson as puppets in their commercials. These two companies, as well as thousands of others, have taken advantage of exposing celebrities in their commercials and advertisements. This is done as a means to persuade the public that these products are worth buying.
As the years went by, marketers began to realize that in America, sports imagery constituted the most popular way of communicating to the public. The major sports organizations that corporations use to market their products consist of the National Football League, Major League Baseball, and the National Hockey League, but more groups are beginning to get in on the act. These groups include the NASCAR Winston Cup Series, the Professional Bowlers Association (PBA), as well as many others as a result of their increasing popularity and a younger group of stars.
A little over a year ago, San Francisco Forty-Niner star wide receiver Terrell Owens caught a touchdown pass and began a unique celebration. When he reached into his sock and pulled out a Sharpie™ marker and signed the football, giving it to a friend in the stands. His touchdown celebration was covered by many major media sources. As a result Owens was offered a partnership with the marker manufacturer. Sharpie™ agreed to donate five hundred dollars to the Alzheimer’s Association in Northern California/Northern Nevada for every touchdown Owens scor...
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...ich the rock band Metallica wrote, entitled “Master of Puppets.” The lyrics go:
Master of Puppets I'm pulling your strings
Twisting your mind and smashing your dreams
Blinded by me, you can't see a thing
Just call my name, `cause I'll hear you scream
This reminds me of today’s marketing world because these corporations all over the world are trying to twist our minds and make us believe that their products are superior to those of their competitors. In today’s world it is no longer who makes the better product, but who can present the product in a better fashion. There is no major difference in the quality of sneakers throughout the world. But unless the Nike, Adidas, or Rebok logo is not there, the sneaker is viewed as poor. It just goes to show how a song written in the 1980s can reflect the marketing era of the year 2003.
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