ERICSSON TAKES ITS FOOTBALLTIE-IN TO NEW LEVEL WITH AD: PRESENCE ON 'MNF' FOLLOWS LINK TO NEW BOND FILM

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Ericsson Cellular Phones will supplement its current ad campaign with a separate TV spot slated for ABC's "NFL Monday Night Football."

The new spot breaking Sept. 29 leverages Ericsson's sponsorship of the Carolina Panthers stadium.

The commercial will make it seem to viewers that they are watching ABC's game-the Carolina Panthers, at home, against the San Francisco 49ers-when suddenly the city suffers a blackout. Ericsson isn't an NFL sponsor, so it won't be able to dress actors in the teams' actual uniforms.

When one spectator pulls out an Ericsson phone, which emits a glow when activated, other spectators follow suit, illuminating the venue sufficiently to allow the teams to continue playing.

The spot isn't part of Ericsson's current "Power of voice" campaign"; Creswell, Munsell, Fultz & Zirbel, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, is the agency.

As earlier reported, the marketer also has a six-week push lined up that's linked to "Tomorrow Never Dies," the upcoming James Bond flick.

SPORTS & ENTERTAINMENT

The new commercial and the Bond program will cap a year that has seen the company use a mix of sports and entertainment to accomplish its brand-building goals, including its entitlement of Ericsson Stadium, and its presenting sponsorship of the World Championships of Beach Volleyball (AA, June 23).

For "Tomorrow Never Dies," Ericsson will launch TV commercials six weeks prior to the debut of the United Artists film, slated for Dec. 19.

BOND WEB PAGE

A host of supporting activity is planned, including an Internet ad push with Ericsson building a Bond Web page and buying banners on search engines to promote it.

Ericsson also will enlist 007's gadget whiz, Q, for a publicity effort, where the actor will visit talk shows and industry trade shows plugging the brand.

Key to Ericsson's tie-in is product placement within the film. Mr. Bond will use an Ericsson concept phone in a variety of traditional and non-traditional ways, like using it to operate his BMW and crack safes.

"We want to be thought of as the brand of the future," said a company spokesman, especially as the company begins developing products that combine pager and e-mail functions.

007 MERCHANDISE

Ericsson will offer a range of high-end Bond merchandise, from watches to leather jackets, as prizes in retailer and Internet contest promotions.

Ericsson executives believe it can convince consumers of its products chicness by getting them to touch it. So the company is looking into the possibility of

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