2K Sports Dangles $1 Million In Game Contest

2KSports TV commercial for game contest

Spring training games are underway, and 2K Sports is trying to capture a little bit of baseball fever for the latest version of its major league sports title, "Major League Baseball 2K," with a contest for one gamer to win $1 million.

As part of the promotion for the title, the company has announced a contest in which the first person to throw a perfect game (no hits, no walks, no one on base by error) will win $1 million.

"One of the new big things in this game is pitching and hitting control," Jason Norcross, a creative director at 2K Sports' advertising agency, 72AndSunny, tells Marketing Daily. "We wanted to up the ante and give people a big reward."

The company is promoting the program with an integrated advertising campaign that includes television, Internet and social media components that emphasize the pitcher vs. hitter duel. A television spot uses game graphics and the game's cover model, Tampa Bay Rays third baseman Evan Longoria, to make its point.



The TV spot broke this week on "American Idol" and sports-oriented programming. Shown from the pitcher's point of view in the game, the commercial begins with an announcer saying the pitcher is just one out away from a perfect game as Longoria steps up to the plate.

As the pitch is thrown and the action slows down, Longoria issues the challenge. "You ready to battle?" he asks. "Be the first to pitch a perfect game in "Major League 2K10" and you could win a million dollars. That's a whole lotta cheese." The action reverts back to real-time speed as Longoria hits a home run. "Good luck," he says. "You're gonna need it."

The agency is also promoting the game and contest via rich media Web banners that showcase the advanced controls and a Facebook group that shows the rankings of the best game players defensively and offensively, Norcross says. Periodically, the top-ranked members of the group may receive memorabilia and other prizes, he says.

"It's another way to keep people interested in the game and get rewarded," he says.

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