Bo Levi-an Rhapsody

Bo Levi Mitchell.

Regardless of his charmless personality, his achievements, extrapolated over a ten or fifteen year career, will have him ahead of most of the quarterbacks in CFL history.

Without checking the numbers, he has a pair of Grey Cups as a starter, a couple more appearances, at least one MOP, his winning percentage is practically insulting to other quarterbacks. This fellow is on a trajectory to make him the finest player in the country, ever, if he continues.

So, why, like Sidney Crosby or Nate Mackinnon, do we not see his face everywhere from Tim Horton’s commercials to the milk aisle at the supermarket? Why doesn’t the CFL market its superstars as Canadian institutions?

“Hi, I’m Bo Levi Mitchell, and I drive a GM Truck.”
“Do you know me? I’m Bo Levi Mitchell. I play quarterback for the Calgary Stampeders, and I want to talk about the importance of getting out to vote.”
“Hello, my name is Bo Levi Mitchell. Are you interested in donating to the (insert your favourite cause) campaign?”

However dumb the examples may be, the truth is that we have this astounding quarterback tearing up the League - currently, as in, he’s active - and his brilliance as well as his value to the League on the national stage is being undersold.

He’s not Canadian ?

The league has done a lackluster job at promoting its players for decades now. The least they could do is insist Nissan get guys like Reilly, BLM, Harris, Sinopoli, etc. into their TSN commercials.

the commercials aren’t going to use a guy who maybe 10% of Canadians know who he is (and that is being generous).

I love this board. We love the CFL. But sometimes we live in the clouds.

Companies producing advertisements use figures that their target market knows.

Currently the largest demographic is Millennials, which most advertisements are marketed towards.

Millennials aren’t huge fans of the CFL - for the most part. Not even Gen X’ers.

But maybe if your looking to target aging boomers, that would make more sense.

Like a Buick car commercial or something.

But don’t hold your breath. Crosby is a household name, while Bo Levi Mitchell is not. And it isn’t up to Nissan to make BLM a household name by their advertisements.

It’s up to BLM and the CFL to make him a household name…then maybe someone will ask for his endorsement.

I see Auston Matthews and Mitch Marner in a dozen commercials right now.

Maybe what he needs more than anything else is a comic foil, a prankster, to
make him part of a ‘buddy’ routine. Paired against some emerging Eastern comic ?

Whenever you see Peyton Manning in an ad, say in the Nationwide Insurance
campaign, or on SNL, he’s pretending to be a goofball. Or else he’s pranking his
little brother, as in the 30-second ESPN promo.Click here to view it on YouTube.

I think the CFL should do more with its top players when it comes to marketing. However, this is also the responsibility of the agent as well.

You see TSN personalities doing CFL adverts, that generally don’t include CFL players. You would think that would be an easy one.

Right now, I think any CFL players that get to be part of adverts, are generally local or regional only.

This is all true, and 10% is very generous IMO.

But one step the league could take is to have its big sponsors who advertise during their own games start using the league’s top players. Obviously, the target audience of commercials during TSN games is the demographic of people watching the game. From there, the cultural connection to the league’s players and by extension, the league, can grow. Many people who are not big sports fans get introduced to starts like Matthews and Marner through commercials, so the CFL could benefit from the same synergy, just on a smaller scale.

I think the CFLPA should also be pressing the league to go to bat for them in this way.

The Jays and Rogers have done a bang up job co-branding

Raptor players are getting exposure that really is Toronto area based .

CFL players are better known in the west .

I would say in Canada as a whole Bo Levi is better known than Danny Green ( right now maybe when they win the NBA championship it will change ) but I see Danny Green doing ads .

Buck Pierce did Belair Insurance commercials and he was retired .

But it’s up to the agent to get the deals and it’s up to the CFL to sell it’s stars .

agreed. part of the issue is also that we dont have major national brands signed on as sponsors either. back in the day we had future shop commercials we dont have a major beer sponsor (molson or labatt were the biggest), or a major car company, or even a national restaurant chain. this is the kind of stuff we need to get involved with if we want to see major marketing for the CFL and its subsidiary brands

The good old days before the Canadian Future Shop was bought out by the American Best Buy .

I miss Future Shop .

This past CFL season during the games, there was a commercial that i found particularly annoying…
It was for Old Spice deodorant or Doritos, i can’t remember…
It had a couple watching a sporting event on TV, wearing Buffalo Bills jerseys…this one really pulled my hairs…
If you are airing commercials during a CANADIAN game, they should have CANADIAN CONTENT…

yah, that’ll go over well.

companies have to make multiple versions of commercials depending on what is being shown when the commercial is being run.

if the CFL or TSN asked Old Spice to generate commercial specifically for them, they’d lose their business.

Certainly, the costs of the CFL-specific commercials would have to be factored into the negotiations for the price of the airtime, but I suspect it would be a wise investment for the league to take a little less up front in order to enhance their product integration with these advertisers.

The Old Spice spot in particular would not require huge a huge investment to tailor it specifically to the CFL-fan market they are actually paying to advertise to.

This could be true, and then there is the possibility that it might go the other way, where canadian companies may involve themselves with CFL>…and it may not be all that much more expensive to change commercials to follow Canadian content, who really knows for sure…

Currently there are rules for Canadian content for radio/tv programming , music etc…just not for commercials.

The comment about aging boomers was astute. I’m a geezer now and of course I refer to Crosby rather than Marner. It’s lucky I didn’t mention “I’m Guy Lafleur and I use a Darryl Sittler hockey stick”, or that “Tony! Tony Esposito!!!” when the unrecognizable face pulls down his distinctive mask.
That’s what a dinosaur I am.

Print media, that’s basically what this forum is. And every one of us is writing. It’s good.

Go back to the times when game programs - CFL Illustrated - were filled with articles and essays about the CFL, its pertinent news, and its most interesting players. The features in those old rags were outstanding. “What play would you call?” was a regular item in the magazines that referenced a memorable play from the previous season, a third down or a gamble, usually, and asked the reader what he would do in the scenario. Some of those old articles are gems, now. Sports reporting has become so refined that it has hardly any substance anymore. It puts to doubt the expression, “If it was easy, everybody would be doing it”. Well, writing is easy, and everybody is doing it.

Beside the point.

Those old programs to which I am referring contained ads with characters such as Joe Thiesmann (read Bo Levi Mitchell), Dave Raimey (read Andrew Harris) and Don Jonas (read Jeremiah Masoli) selling everything from Mr. Happy Foot to sweaters from Eaton’s. And greatest of all, for their charm, were the local restaurant ads and barber shops that used a familiar player to encourage patronage. “After a game there’s no better place to visit than Shakespeare’s restaurant downtown”, kind of thing.

The print media was a great place for visible, affordable advertising. Occasionally now an organization will buy an entire newspaper page thanking fans or announcing a major promotion. People still like to read the written word. TSN fails - on a “ginormous” scale- to target this demographic.

The literate, the thinking, the educated football fan.

Well written young man.

I attended Continental Football League games at DeLormier Stadium (Downs), so I’m up there.

Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts. Ah the memories! I think the CFL should form a committee of geezers, uh seniors or veterans to utilize our experience. After all we remember the glory days of the league and I am confident we have the skill sets to translate the memories to an effective campaign to promote this league. Any thoughts? Randy?

The point is, Bo Levi Mitchell is a rocketing star to which the CFL needs to attach its chariot. Harness this fellow’s marketing potential, and make him earn his keep.

How about Wally Buono and John Hufnagel doing an Acorn Stair Lift ad?