Mars to Receive NASCAR Marketing Achievement Award

November 26, 2012, Official Release,

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Mars, Incorporated will be honored with the 2012 NASCAR Marketing Achievement Award at Thursday's NMPA Myers Brothers Awards in Las Vegas.

Throughout its 23-year partnership, Mars has directly engaged race fans, customers and associates through an integrated marketing strategy that spanned intellectual property, promotions, public relations, B2B, online, broadcast, event marketing and retail. The partnership represents one of the longest standing within the sport.

"Mars' execution of a fully integrated strategy within NASCAR exemplifies the spirit of the award and has been the catalyst to the brand's success in the sport," said Jim O'Connell, chief sales officer for NASCAR. "One of our longest standing partners took full advantage of its sponsorship, raising the bar with innovative ideas designed to engage our brand loyal fan base, its associates and ultimately move product off the shelf."

In a recent study, Mars received a 4-to-1 return on its investment in NASCAR (measured by Mars tracking data). Additionally, its sponsorships create a fifth season of sales for the brand, which is on par with the size of the company's Christmas-selling season.

"The NASCAR sponsorship model is driven by brand loyalty, and Mars has been behind the wheel of a best-in-class partnership," said William Clements, vice president of sponsorships and sports marketing for Mars Chocolate North America. "Our successes have been led by innovation that extends to customers, consumers and associates, and capitalizes on NASCAR's broad fan base that represents approximately one-third of the U.S. adult population. We are honored by this award and continue to see the strength and growth of our partnership with NASCAR."

In 2012, Mars executed several integrated marketing initiatives designed to reach its three key stakeholders -- customers, consumers and associates -- in an effort to extend beyond the iconic M&M's paint scheme. The following initiatives have resulted in Mars and its brands becoming some of the most recognized in the sport:

- Conducted consumer-centric promotions like the current M&M's When We Win, You Could Win Sweepstakes

- Pioneered the TV panel program, which places the logo of key retailers on the rear TV panel of the No. 18 Toyota to drive exposure and incremental sales

- The "Best Seats in the House" program provided fans with the ultimate seat upgrade at select tracks

- Engaged associates with dedicated NASCAR ambassadors to celebrate the No. 18 Toyota's successes and team news