Callaway Golf hopes to tap into fairway fever with a campaign launched today that combines social and paid media.
The Performance Gets Attention campaign runs on ESPN.com, which is featuring live video coverage of the Masters Golf Tournament, held in Augusta, GA this week.
The banner introduces Callaway Golf’s new line of RAZR Driver and Iron golf clubs with a homepage takeover that says, "Performance gets attention. Write your own quote and have it seen on ESPN.com. Click here to expand and become famous." On expansion, visitors see, "Finish a Razr quote yourself and have your friends see it today on ESPN.com."
ESPN.com visitors have three fill-in-the-blanks choices, including "So much power, it's like having ____ in my golf bag," and, "I love these clubs more than I love ____."
After filling in the copy, they automatically connect with Facebook to "like" Callaway and then get to see their headlines - and names - on ESPN.com's front page. They can also post the link to their profiles or Twitter.
The campaign was created by Eleven Inc. of San Francisco, Callaway's agency of record for creative and strategy on brand and products since 2008.
While it's common to dynamically reconfigure ad content based on a site visitor's location, Courtney Buechert, president of Eleven, says this is the first time ESPN.com has enabled a dynamic feed from Facebook that allows micro-networking of an ad buy.
"Having this on the ESPN homepage on the Friday of the Masters is a good media buy on all the right terms," Buechert says. "The hope and intent is to reach people who are interested in golf and the Masters."
The banners had received thousands of interactions by mid-day, and the agency set a goal for number of posts.
"Because it's no more expensive to create this, we evaluate it just on pure media," Buechert says. "Our goal is 11 million impressions over the course of the day."
He thinks fans will be willing to open Callaway up to their Facebook networks because of the fun and excitement of seeing their words and names on ESPN.com.
"Marketers are moderately welcome in there," he says. "One of the ways you can be welcomed is to enable something fun. If I clicked on the banner and got a selling message, I'd be really angry."
Callaway is one of the three or four top golf brands, and its brand messaging strategy throughout the 2011 “Winning Redefined” campaign is to focus less on the high tech of golf club design and more on the "heart and soul."
"Callaway, as an old and venerable company, always has been more emotional about the game of golf. The technological advancements in club designs are on par with the aerospace industry, and most companies focus on their technology. This ad is inviting people to talk about how you feel about your golf club with nontechnical language - reminding us that this is a game," Buechert says.
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Susan Kuchinskas has covered interactive advertising since its invention. The former staff writer for Adweek, Business 2.0, and M-Business covers technology, business and culture from Berkeley, CA.
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