Insurer Aflac will become a sponsor of the Heisman Trophy as it increases its college football affiliation. The company has sponsored an in-game "Aflac Trivia" question for some time.
The deal with the nearly 80-year-old award, which has been backed by Nissan, allows Aflac to leverage the relationship on a grassroots level with its agents. Nissan, in partnership with Sports Illustrated, has sponsored a mobile tour focusing on the award.
Aflac is in the midst of a campaign to recruit more agents, and the subject of a TV spot, Web ads and a message on a NASCAR vehicle it sponsors.
The Heisman deal is for multiple years, although terms were not announced. ESPN carries the presentation of the award each December.
Michael Zuna, Aflac CMO, stated: "We know our accounts, agents, and brokers are passionate about the game, so we are excited and honored to team up with this coveted award."
Insurance companies view college football as particularly fertile ground to advertise, notably Allstate placing its logo on field goal nets and Liberty Mutual sponsoring a coach-of-the-year competition. USAA backs the annual Army-Navy game.