Turner Connects with NBA, Heisman Sponsor


New York -- Turner Broadcasting System Inc. last weekfinalized an integrated marketing campaign with the National Basketball Association,called "NBA Tipoff '99."

Earlier this fall, TBSI entered into another marketingpartnership with American Suzuki Motor Corp. and the Downtown Athletic Club, home ofcollege football's Heisman Trophy.

NBA Tipoff '99, which is tied to the Nov. 2 start ofthe pro basketball season, will run from Oct. 10 through Nov. 5. It is supported by asweepstakes, promotional spots, print and radio advertising plus retail displays at 2,100Kmart stores, according to Ken Derrett, the NBA's vice president of marketingpartnerships and Turner Sports' Mark Lazarus, executive vice president of sales andglobal client solutions.

Each NBA team will also run tie-in promo spots on arenaJumbotron screens.

The grand prize in the sweepstakes, which consumers canenter via the NBA.com Web site or by calling a toll-free telephone number, will be twotickets to a regular season game covered by Turner Network Television or TBS Superstation.

The first game on TNT airs Nov. 2. The first TBS game isNov. 3.

The Kmart displays involve such NBA merchandise licenseesas Huffy Sports, Topps Co., Sony PlayStation and Coca-Cola Co.'s Sprite. In addition,the retail chain will distribute pocket TNT and TBS NBA schedules and plug NBA Tipoff'99 in its Oct. 10 advertising circular.

Meanwhile, TBSI's $35 million partnership with Suzukiand the home of the Heisman Trophy will encompass multi-page sections in Time Inc.magazines. There will also Heisman Heroes video vignettes on past winners on CableNews Network, CNN/SI, Turner Network Television and other Turner networks, as well as onthe CNN/SI Web site, Jumbotron screens at 10 major U.S. college stadiums and in movietheaters in several major markets.

Although Turner's TNT and TBS share cable coverage ofthe NBA, ESPN covers the actual Heisman Trophy award ceremony in December.