Comedy Central is breaking what may be the first promotional effort designed to make consumers hurl. To introduce its BBC acquisition of the cult comedy classic "The Young Ones," the cable network this month runs a series of ads and spring break college promotions highlighted by vomit. "What's that bloody smell?" reads the headline of a foul-smelling scratch-and-sniff ad placed in the June issue of Spin. Another in issues of Ray Gun, Bikini, Wired and Rolling Stone asks readers to match each of the four Young Ones characters with the color of their vomit. The contest offers a grand prize of a $3,500 home entertainment system. Five hundred runners-up get a Young Ones T-shirt premium and a pair of shoes from Dr. Martens. Promotion agency on the assignment is Hogan Communications, Burbank, Calif.
Nintendo of America on March 21 starts a national retail promotion allowing purchasers of its Donkey Kong videogame products the chance to earn "Banana Bucks" points redeemable through a mail-in offer for collectible merchandise. A co-op retail ad campaign supports. Flair Communications, San Francisco, coordinated the promotion, which ends April 30.
Sears Merchandise Group and American Airlines held the "America's Cup Family Sweepstakes" this month, offering one grand prize trip for 10 to the first America's Cup race in San Diego May 6. The prize includes a pre-race meeting with Dennis Conner, skipper of the Stars & Stripes boat; lunch aboard the chase boat; and a guided tour of Sea World. Customers spending $25 or more on Sears' Stars & Stripes apparel or Sperry Top-Sider shoes received an entry form. The promotion, supported by TV and radio, was coordinated by Advantage International, New York. Separately, Sears is running a similar promotion for the NCAA Final Four tourney, offering tickets to final games in Seattle and Minneapolis.
Chrysler Corp.'s Dodge division has signed on as official car and engine supplier for all the teaching and racing operations of the Lakeville, Conn.-based Skip Barber Group. The agreement gives the automaker a title sponsorship in what will be known as the Dodge/Skip Barber Driving School, exposing Dodge vehicles to the 17,000 people a year who participate in 20 locations across the country. The agreement also creates title sponsorships for the Skip Barber Formula Dodge Race Series of four regional championships and the Barber Dodge Pro series.
Ocean Spray Cranberries on March 2 kicked off its Juice Jam '95 promotional tour at the Strawberry Festival in Plant City, Fla. The campaign, being handled by Innova Marketing, Minneapolis, features a virtual reality motion-simulator ride at selected events that allows participants to fly an F-16 fighter jet and climb a mountain in cyberspace. The tour plans to hit 200 colleges and special events by Labor Day in support of four new flavors.
Heinz USA last week named J. Brown/LMC Group, Stamford, Conn., as its co-marketing agency of record for Heinz ketchup, 57 Steak Sauce and Homestyle gravy. The move follows the marketer's split last fall with longtime ad agency Leo Burnett USA, Chicago, and its shift of general ad spending into local and national promotions.