New industry ads coming soon

CHICAGO – The 2007 Discovering Boating ad campaign will officially begin in two days and continue through the Memorial Day holiday, according to a statement today from Grow Boating Inc.

The media mix is similar to last year, incorporating national cable, magazine and internet advertising, but with a few new twists — including new television, print and online creative executions, increased frequency and more value-added opportunities, the group reported.

“The main objective of the Discover Boating advertising campaign in 2007 is to build on the brand awareness cultivated during last year’s advertising schedule and scale up our lead generation opportunities,” said Carl Blackwell, vice president of Marketing & Communications for both Grow Boating Inc. and the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA).

TV ads

This year’s television commercials include the return of a 30-second spot originally run in 2006, as well as the addition of a brand new creative concept involving man’s best friend, the dog. The television spots, entitled “Dogs” and “Wave,” will air from March through May on several major cable TV networks throughout the country, including: Animal Planet; CNN; Country Music Television (CMT); FOX News; MSNBC; National Geographic Channel; Travel Channel; and The Weather Channel.

Several value-added vignettes, produced at no additional cost to Discover Boating, were negotiated along with the cable television media buy. They include: A “Best Boating for Families” segment on the National Geographic Channel; CMT’s “Top 20 Countdown” filmed at the Miami International Boat Show; and customized Discover Boating messages based on local weather conditions courtesy of The Weather Channel.

Print ads

In print, Discover Boating will likewise use the “Dogs” theme to draw attention to boating messages, along with two additional ads called “Kids” and “Generations,” which reinforce the philosophy “Life’s Better on a Boat.” The Discover Boating print campaign will run prominently in the March through May editions of 11 major magazines: Popular Science; Popular Mechanics; Family Handyman; Men’s Journal; Golf, Field & Stream; Outdoor Life; Motor Trend; Family Circle; National Geographic Traveler; and Real Simple Travel.

In addition to the ads, 18 million business reply cards encouraging consumers to request a free copy of the “Get Started in Boating” DVD were negotiated as part of the print campaign at no cost, a total value of approximately $475,000. These cards, found in the May editions of several national publications, will help Discover Boating not only drive, but also track consumer leads, Grow Boating Inc. reported.

“Instead of treating consumers as passive observers — as was the case with last year’s print executions — the new television and print ads changed perspective,” said John Dorton, CEO of MasterCraft Boat Co. and chairman of the Grow Boating Marketing Committee. “This year’s advertisements are designed to provide a first-hand account of what it’s like onboard a boat, creating the sense a viewer/reader is actively engaged in the activity.”

Online ads

Internet advertising is also ramping up this year, with more than 180 million banner ad placements being served on more than 400 websites, including Weather.com, Discovery.com, CNN.com and AOL.com. Keyword advertising on search engines like Google, Yahoo! and MSN will continue year-round in 2007, a significant change from the 2006 internet strategy.

Discover Boating will also advertise during online broadcasts of the NCAA Basketball Tournament in mid-March. Last year, the NCAA online broadcast was the largest live video-streamed event in history, with more than 30 million individual video streams recorded. In 2007, that number is expected to grow even larger and surpass the 2006 total, according to Grow Boating.

Negotiated as another value-added bonus, the Boat Selector Tool will be imbedded in the editorial sections of a handful of websites, including AccuWeather.com, ESPNOutdoors.com, OutdoorLife.com and Weather.com. This piece alone is expected to create more than five million consumer impressions for Discover Boating in 2007, Grow Boating stated.

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