Upper Deck Ad Campaign to Feature Derek Jeter, Launch Fantasy-Like League for Kids; Company's Youth Ad Spend in '06 More Than Previous Decade Combined
Apr 2, 2007

CARLSBAD, Calif. (April 2, 2007) -- At the breakfast table as a kid, you'd steal your dad's morning paper before he got there, quickly going to one place: the baseball box scores. Pouring the milk over your corn flakes -- in turn -- you poured over every stat. Who had the most homeruns that day, the most steals, the most strikeouts?

That spirit for statistics has carried over to adulthood for many fans, as fantasy leagues have become increasingly popular among the 30-and-over set. But where does that leave kids today? With a majority of their time spent trading MP3s, playing video games on their PCs, do they even care about RBIs and ERAs?

Trading card leader Upper Deck thinks so, and starting next week the company is launching an ad campaign to introduce an online fantasy-like league for kids in support of its 2007 UD MLB Series One baseball product.

The 15- and 30-second spots for the Baseball Scoreboard Challenge featuring New York Yankees captain Derek Jeter -- and Upper Deck's current tagline, "Get More Than Lucky" -- will air on Nickelodeon and the Cartoon Network beginning the week of April 2, running through the end of May.

Print ads will follow in Sports Illustrated for Kids and in game programs in all 30 Major League Baseball markets.

This is only the second broadcast push for Upper Deck in the last decade, following last year's successful spots. Those commercials unveiled a kids rewards program (www.upperdeckkids.com) which, to date, has signed up more than 140,000 kids. In total, those kids have registered nearly 22 million cards, winning prizes and connecting with others in this unique, interactive community.

According to Upper Deck, kids continue to be their main consumer focus, a departure from the last decade when the company -- and the entire industry -- was intent on catering to the 35-plus crowd. Now looking to grow a new generation of collectors, Upper Deck said its ad-dollar allocation to capture the kid market in 2006 was more than it had spent in the previous 10 years combined.

And the results have been immediate. Besides the number of kids, cards registered on their rewards site, Upper Deck has seen overall growth in this age category. In February, Kids Trend Tracker reported 42 percent of boys aged 8-11, and 33 percent of boys 12-15, are now collecting sports cards, up from single digits just a year ago.

Creative Behind New Upper Deck Jeter/Scoreboard Challenge TV Spots
As with last year's ads, the commercials feature real kids in real-life collecting situations. However, Jeter has been added to the creative mix in 2007 for three of its four spots.

In one titled "Steals," the all-star shortstop is off-screen, the final piece to the protagonist's collection, another young collector adding a Jeter card as an afterthought in a trade -- thinking the protagonist is trying to rack up weekly fantasy league points for steals. The protagonist's response, to the camera: "Bonehead. Next week he'll [Jeter] be hitting."

Two other commercials feature the real-life Jeter, asking the audience which major league star will be the tops in two categories, hits and strikeouts. He also speaks to Upper Deck's philosophy: the need to trade cards with friends to build your collection, not merely get lucky in pulling a rookie or insert. At the end, he gives the company's new tagline, "Get more than lucky."

Upper Deck's latest broadcast ads were created by Posnick+ Advertising, New York, the agency behind the company's entertainment products, including Yu-Gi-Oh! and Vs. System (Marvel).

About the Upper Deck Company
Founded in 1988, The Upper Deck Co. is a premier global sports and entertainment-publishing company that delivers a portfolio of relevant, innovative and multi-dimensional product experiences to collectors, sports and entertainment enthusiasts.


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