NEW YORK - It's the high-hat cymbal crash heard 'round the country, and the echo begins this week as Verizon launches a consumer marketing promotion tied to its sponsorship of the new IMAX film, ''ALL ACCESS: Front Row. Backstage. LIVE! Presented by CERTS®,'' produced by Ideal Entertainment.
The movie, which debuted to great reviews this month and is currently playing across the country, features an IMAX giant screen, surround-sound view of some of today's leading music legends and contemporary rock stars in concert, behind the scenes and in conversations about their artistry and influences.
''By sponsoring this film and building a sales promotion around the exclusive enhanced CD, Verizon will showcase our brand and our consumer service packages in an energetic and contemporary way,'' said Frank Kinder, Verizon vice president of consumer marketing.
More than 25 million customers will be receiving direct mail and bill inserts from Verizon in the coming weeks, offering them a free, exclusive soundtrack CD if they purchase one of several service packages. The enhanced CD includes seven music tracks and one video track by artists such as Sting, George Clinton, Mary J. Blige, Sheryl Crow, B.B. King, Macy Gray and Moby.
Television advertising in key markets, geared around the sponsorship and the CD offer, begins in May. Additional promotions will be tied to Verizon's sponsorship of the Lifestyle pages of the bet.com Web site, as well as various broadcast venues, and will involve movie ticket giveaways and other collateral items. In-theater promotions also are planned, including a Verizon featurette to be screened at the conclusion of the film.
''Verizon has bundled products and services in ways that provide customers with meaningful solutions to their telecommunications needs, thus helping them manage their lives better and more easily,'' said Kinder. ''This summer, we're also offering customers additional savings on Verizon Online high-speed DSL (digital subscriber line) and dial-up Internet access, long-distance calling in states where we provide the service, Home Voice Mail and discounts on additional lines -- a tool computer users find invaluable.
''We think the IMAX sponsorship will increase the visibility of these offers, while exposing our customers to a great movie experience,'' he said.
''IMAX consistently delivers an experience that audiences can never achieve on their own,'' said Michelle Hagen, vice president of Worldwide Film Marketing, IMAX Corp.. ''The association with Verizon once again fulfills this expectation by offering customers an exclusive enhanced CD that they cannot purchase in stores. The combined amount of support from Verizon and CERTS® for ALL ACCESS is unprecedented and will only heighten the excitement surrounding the launch of the film and its future.''
Verizon is launching new consumer package offers this month. The company already has had great success with its first quarter advertising campaign, which is increasing sales of packages that include various combinations of local calling, directory assistance and call management features like Caller ID, Three-Way Calling, Call Waiting, Call Forwarding and others. During these promotions, customers get additional savings on the new services when they are ordered at the same time as a package.
IMAX Corporation and its subsidiaries comprise one of the world's leading entertainment technology companies, with particular emphasis on film and digital imaging technologies, including giant-screen images, 3D presentations, digital post-production and digital projection. There were more than 220 IMAX theatres operating in 28 countries around the world as of September 30, 2000. IMAX's subsidiaries include Digital Projection International, whose primary business is the design and manufacture of high-end digital image delivery devices, Sonics Associates, a designer and manufacturer of high-end sound systems and DKP/70MM Inc., award-winning specialists in image quality control and post-production. IMAX Corporation is a publicly traded company listed on both the Toronto and Nasdaq stock exchanges. More information on the Company can be found at www.imax.com
Ideal Entertainment produces mainstream entertainment for motion pictures, TV, music, merchandising and the Internet. Principal Jon Shapiro was executive producer of the $200 million grossing film, Richie Rich, starring Macaulay Culkin, for Warner Bros., and is Producer of Universal Pictures' forthcoming Curious George, a live-action feature based on the classic children's books. Partner Peter Shapiro is owner of the world-renowned live music venue, Wetlands, in New York City, and co-founder of GreenOrder.COM, a new Internet venture for institutional procurement of environmentally friendly products.
Kobin Enterprises Ltd. is a full service global entertainment and sports marketing agency that specializes in creating high impact/breakthrough sales promotions with strategically targeted program initiatives. With a full service office in New York City, the company's principals, Alyse M. Kobin and Sharon Tracy are recognized as among the most innovative and progressive in the world of entertainment and sports marketing.
Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States, with nearly 109 million access line equivalents and more than 27.5 million wireless customers. Verizon is also the largest directory publisher in the world. A Fortune 10 company with approximately $65 billion in 2000 revenues and more than 260,000 employees, Verizon's global presence extends to more than 40 countries in the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Pacific. For more information on Verizon, visit www.verizon.com