Marlboro Logo Ferrari
Marlboro has decided to use only the barcode logo on the Ferrari.

Color me reactionary but Altria’s (who owns Philip Morris who owns Marlboro brands) sponsorship deal ends in 2011; they will have spent a rumored $1,000,000,000 on their support of Ferrari and for the last furlong of their support, no one will even read their name on the car.

When asked to spend $300.00 (around 158 pounds to your fine folks in the UK…or do I say quid if it’s under 1000?) to support a golf charity event, I like to have my company name on the sign next the hole I am sponsoring but if I spent a billion dollars, I am thinking I would want my name tattooed on the drivers as well as painted on the cars.

This isn’t chump change for anyone and in the mad dash to save the world from tobacco (you draw the moral conclusion of your own liking) we have relegated Marlboro to using a barcode and inferring that we should think about their brand of tobacco. A sort of ‘buy more popcorn’ frame inserted in a movie at the cinema. After watching the Ferrari circle 70 times, I guess I am supposed to subliminally want to have a smoke break by looking at the barcode.

So what conclusion can we draw from this move?

A. logos don’t really matter much in F1

B. Marlboro is so massive in scope that they could put a white dot on the car and everyone would chain-smoke. Sort of like Prince changing his name to a symbol but more genteel and less eye-liner

C. The barcode has become synonymous with Marlboro and thus, people have been keyed in to the brand by association, frequency and reach.

D. Everyone wants popcorn around lap 30

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Lucas S.
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Lucas S.

Maybe Marlboro can incorporate the bar code into their logo, of course then they wouldn’t be able to use the barcode on the car.

I really can’t believe they still sponsor the car. If I was Ferrari I would be looking for new sponsors by 2011.

Lucas S.

WonkyDave
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WonkyDave

Actually, I think it’s brilliant bit of marketing. An average person watching wonders what the bar code is (it does stand out well on broadcasts), goes to F1’s and/or Ferarri’s website to find the info, and is solicited by many other advertisements, including Marlboro. Does this make the person want to smoke? Probably not unless they already smoke, but their product(s) are now on the mind of this person. And isn’t that what all parties (FIA, individual teams, sponsors) are after? If you know anything about F1/Ferarri, it doesn’t take a rocket sciencefictionist to figure what the bar code probably… Read more »

BobHereYo
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BobHereYo

I would agree with you Neg, but I dont’ smoke and I know full well who the major sponsor of that Red Car is. Remember once upon a time, Marlboro was the title sponsor of McClaren and Ferrari at the same time.

Do you also notice that they have the paint scheme only on the Penske Indycar’s but you rarely see the Marlboro logo on the drivers jumpsuits or cars. As I am writing this I had to stop myself from calling them Marlboro Team Penske, it is etched in my mind.

chumleyuk
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chumleyuk

I have had the dubious opportunity of working on some very large ‘advertising’ and promo projects for Philip Morris and I am utterly amazed at how much money they have to burn… as an example, they spent nearly $20,000,000 on promotional material for eastern europe that they never got round to using. I believe they are very very cunning with their money and things like this are used as tax breaks, guilt avoidance etc. I’m sure they get special treatment from countries/ organizations if they ‘donate’ or ‘invest’ a certain amount of money to certain things. Mark my words, they… Read more »

Noddy93
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Noddy93

The Marbalo Barcode is brilliant marketing. That is until this year.

in ’06 & ’07 it screamed marbalo…. so much so that I spent time checking if it was anamorphosic

Noddy93
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Noddy93

dude… as the king of “SAT” words you’ve no place to be mocking me :p