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Today's Tidbit... Football Advertising Postcards and Time Travel
Since football began, advertisers have linked their brands to the game via commercials, program advertisements, naming rights, and postcards. Early advertisers did not need football to have a connection to their brand to think their business would benefit from the gridiron’s glow. The Frank H. Stewart Electric Company of Philadelphia believed a pretty girl wearing a football jersey and holding the blimp-like ball of the day would help sell light bulbs. Maybe it did.
However, the automotive business soon realized that most folks making decisions about buying and maintaining cars had one thing in common. They were men, and what do men like? Football. Your local Texaco dealer understood that sending a postcard picturing a referee with your name and address stamped on the bottom would cause men to take the time out to schedule a service appointment. Who could resist?
The real money was to be made, however, by selling brand-new cars, even when selling a Chevrolet at a reduced price during the fourth quarter of the year (after the new model year came out).
Nothing says football like the 1963 Ford Falcon convertible. It was a great car that was easy to drive. So easy your wife could drive it onto the football field within feet of where your son and his friends were scrimmaging, and no one would get hurt!
If football was the sport to sell American cars, imagine what it would do for German vehicles, like the VW Bus. Who wouldn’t want a 1965 VW Bus to transport eleven sweaty teenagers after a hard afternoon practice?
The previous postcard was such a good idea that Volkwagen went to the well a second time, posing the team in front of the same bus. But, of course, one might ask why the team has only ten players.
However, the more critical question about the last postcard is, why does the coach in the postcard from 1965 look so much like Paul Chryst?
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