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Oct 03, 2012 - 05:27 PM
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JD Motorsports W/Gary Keller Partners With Clemson Students
Posted by: newsla on Oct 03, 2012 - 05:21 PM
JD Motorsports W/Gary Keller Partners With Clemson Students For Marketing Initiative

It sometimes takes unique ideas and initiatives when trying to attain marketing partnerships to be a better NASCAR Nationwide Series team.


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Such is the case with a newly-formed marketing alliance between the JD Motorsports w/Gary Keller NASCAR Nationwide Series team and Clemson University. (www.ClemsonRacing.com) Nine devoted students from the South Carolina learning institution are spearheading an effort to develop long-term and short-term marketing plans for the team’s No. 01 Chevrolet driven by Mike Wallace.

Their goal is to cultivate potential donors, develop sales proposals, meet potential customers, close deals and activate the brand of Clemson University and the South Carolina-based racing company. This is a pilot program and, according to Wallace, is the first such program between a university and a NASCAR team.

“When this whole idea was brought up, I immediately saw the potential in this for everyone,” said Wallace, a four-time NNS winner. “I don’t personally know of another school of Clemson’s caliber teaming up with a NASCAR team for marketing purposes.

“Even before we made this public announcement, there was a lot of internal interest generated by the students when they started telling people what they were doing with our team. And, our team is very much on board with this idea to help us, help the school and help future students attending Clemson.”

At this Saturday’s Clemson vs. Georgia Tech football game, for the first time in the history of “Death Valley,” there will be a No. 01 Clemson Tigers Chevrolet show car parked inside Gate 1 of Memorial Stadium. Wallace is attending a meet and greet before the game in Sirrine Courtyard then signing autographs by the car at halftime and after the game.

The nine Clemson students first task is to raise enough partnership funds to have a “Clemson” car, carrying the famous Tiger Paw and the university’s orange color, done by the season-ending race at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 17.

“I was sitting in this meeting with Mike, and it’s everything I have ever wanted to work on,” said Matt Wehman, a Clemson senior. “I kept thinking, ‘We have a long way to go.’ When we have the Clemson car for the race, we’re going to get national talk about this project.”

Mary Anne Raymond, Marketing Department Chair, and Professor Amanda Cooper-Fine are heading up the project. Before she came to Clemson, Fine executed sponsorships for sports teams.

“There is nothing more tangible than this,” Fine said. “The students are seeing the logistics and the time commitment to a huge project. As professors, our role is to direct when needed, get the right approvals and make sure all processes are followed.”

The No. 01 Chevrolet is currently without marketing partners for much of the remaining 2012 season. By beginning this initiative now, they are also generating interest for this season, and for 2013. Wallace is currently 12th in the NNS Driver’s Standings.

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