Disciple of INDYCAR Weblog

June 22, 2010

IZOD as the Indy Car Sponsor is Great, But is it Realistic?

Filed under: The Disciple Blogs — Disciple of INDYCAR @ 12:53 am

I would like to talk about the IZOD Indy Car Series sponsor. IZOD does a wonderful job of getting the message out there. Their use of the Indy Car brand as a vehicle for marketing is smart and probably cost effective as well. The enthusiasm of their participation is obvious, and that bodes very well for the series.



I have just a couple of minor, nit-picky problems, however. One is the lack of any sort of copy change for their TV spots. It’s usually the same four with different drivers but the same grating theme music and a background of vapid, zombie looking models who are way too perfect in every way. Love the advertising…wish the creative got changed from time to time.

The squeaky clean models lead to my second point. Many Indy Car fans may aspire to be Tony Kanaan, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Marco Andretti, Danica or Dan Wheldon (who even fixed his teeth as part of an image makeover) and that is normal. But do most people who go to Indy Car races aspire to be like those models? With those clothes?  How many people who have been to an Indy Car race have ever seen a sailing yacht, much less ridden on one? The closest most will get is some tiny fishing boat on a tiny rural pond. They most likely will not be wearing starched, ironed polo shirts and white pants either. They will probably be swilling beer out of can and dripping ketchup onto their sleeveless t-shirts. Race attendees are generally always going to be closer to Klan than to Kennedy.

I do not know how much IZOD clothing gets sold as a result of the sponsorship. Hopefully a lot. I have seen an increasing number of the retro-themed items on attendees’ bodies and that is very cool. It is hard to recommend how to change a slick marketing campaign into something more realistic. It is probably a good idea to take a good hard look at race fans that go to races. Many are hefty in the midsection. Many are challenged from a dental point of view. Some exacerbate that situation by wearing NASCAR-themed items. Many have an abundance of facial hair. Most wear articles of clothing they probably shouldn’t. The men are even worse.

Does IZOD clothing come in 4 or 5XL? A member of the family visited the gift shop at IMS today, and they had IZOD Indy themed pet products. THAT is a great idea. Ideas like that keep the brand accessible to those who talk funny like and live with, or are, animals.

IZOD needs to figure out a way to incorporate beer in some way. Many youthful Indy Car enthusiasts consume a lot of it.

These are but a few suggestions. Basically, the too slick models need to go and someone willing to yell ‘YEE-HAW’  then cannonball off the boat into the lake needs to be added. I would also have that smiling IZOD model that horns into all the camera shots unzip the IZOD driver suit down to at least her navel and let most of a boob or two just hang out. We need that. I understand she has done that before.

We need more viewers. These ideas would get them. Their money spends just as well.



  1. In the 70’s and 80’s Indy car racing fans were 85% from the high income bracket, no T shirts, no Levis, always a button down shirt with a collar, most men carried a sweater, shoes that shined so you could see your image, the girls would wear clothing purchased from high end department stores, they always had their hair perfectly arraigned. Todays fan is the typical Saturday night sprint car fan, wears a silk screened T Shirt, Levis a beer in one hand and a cigarette in the other hand

    Comment by rosco — June 22, 2010 @ 5:00 am | Reply

  2. Not all of us are as you describe, Rosco. I don’t care for dirt racing, don’t smoke, don’t drink, and rarely wear a silk-screened t-shirt. But, I put my money where my mouth is, by attending and supporting my favorite series. I also accept change, good or bad. I may not agree with it sometimes, but I don’t let it, or internet contributors, ruin my enthusiasm.

    Comment by The dude — June 22, 2010 @ 11:18 am | Reply

  3. Perhaps IZOD is trying to lure in an additional demographic, one that most certainly would not follow NASCAR but would watch IndyCar?

    However, having a back yard BBQ, drinking beer while watching the race ad would be good. An ad filmed at the Camp and Brew would be perfect.

    Comment by M. Miller — June 22, 2010 @ 12:01 pm | Reply

  4. I see where you are coming from however I think that the “fantasy” portrayal Izod is using is no different than others. Wrangler runs an ad with Dale Jr. which is plausable, but Brett Favre? We all know Brett Favre doesn’t where Wrangler. It’s just TV showing beautiful people. Even reality shows are crafted to look like a certain reality which we all know isn’t real. That’s how tv has shifted. I don’t smoke, drink, or go shirtless at the races so I guess I fall into the demographic as well.

    Comment by Brad — June 22, 2010 @ 3:52 pm | Reply

  5. Maybe I am weird or it’s just me growing up on the west coast, I don’t understand why people think that if you drink beer and like dirt racing, that you can’t like wine and art. I enjoy both. Really are people that stereotypical that they think that only rednecks and hicks drink beer, and that only preppy, social elite like wine and art. I was watching sport century about A.J. Foyt was kinda degrading Mario cause he drank wine was able to talk to just about anybody king or poor person. I don’t understand this blue collar versus white-collar mentallity. I like the advertising for Izod they should show more forms of racing, where the drivers came from. I personally believe that we need road racers and sprint and midget drivers mixing in up in the serious more, so that you get the best of both worlds. People need stop being stuck up, yes even poor people can be.

    Comment by Todd Johnson — June 22, 2010 @ 6:57 pm | Reply

  6. I agree with you, Todd. All kinds like IndyCar, regardless of their income or economic status. I don’t regard myself as “blue collar”, yet I like the Indy cars, and for that matter, NASCAR. And as far as I’m concerned, A. J. Foyt was never a person to guide or base ANYBODY’S standards, no matter how great a driver he was. He’s a throwback to the Stone Age.

    Comment by DOUG — June 22, 2010 @ 9:15 pm | Reply

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