It's official: there's too much official stuff out there

Posted on Thu Feb 19 2009

Cocktail Far be it from we of the marketing beat to poke fun at sponsorships. After all, having an official brand is one hell of a lot less risky than signing an official spokesperson (stuff can go wrong with those folks; they might, like, light up a bong or something.) And doesn’t every auto race deserve its “official” brand of socket wrench? Of course it does. The only problem is, like everything else in marketing, a good idea is easily done to death. Case in point: The recent announcement from that the musical “Guys and Dolls” now has an official cocktail: The Dulce de Leche, made with Bacardi rum. A play about gamblers and nightclub slag probably ought to have an official drink, but it does beg the question: At what point is there so much official swag that nobody knows, remembers or cares what goes with what? Here’s just a small sample of some of the more abstruse official merch out there:

• Defense – Official soap of Rocky Mountain Nationals youth wrestling
• Arriva – Official socks of the Toronto Marathon
• Kabar – Official knife of the U.S. Marine Corps
• French’s – Official mustard of the new Yankee Stadium
• Mrs. T’s – Official peirogis of the “Locker Room” show on Channel 15, Pittsburgh.
• MasterCraft – Official boat of the Dew Action Sports Tour
• Moonshot – Official bat of the Golden Stick Wiffleball League
• Evian – Official water of the Palm Springs International Film Society
• Right Guard – Official underarm deodorant of the NBA (and they should know.)
• Lifestyles – Official condom of New York City (and it should know.)

—Posted by Robert Klara

Adult big wheels, BMX jousting, Fat Tire. Now, that's an event!

Posted on Wed Feb 11 2009

New Belgium Brewing, the Fort Collins, Colo.-based maker of Fat Tire ale, sponsors something called the Urban Assault Ride, a touring scavenger-hunt competition that features human bumper cars (i.e., people bashing each other with black inner tubes), face-first slip 'n slides and adult-size big wheels. The contestants in the 10-city tour must race around each entire city, from one checkpoint challenge to another. The first team to complete the tasks and finish a final obstacle course receives new bikes and other prizes. Everyone, however, gets to partake in the New Belgium Beer afterparty. Sounds like a blast. Although, wouldn't BMX jousting be a lot more fun after you've put down a couple of Fat Tires?

—Posted by Kenneth Hein



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