Microsoft Director of Business & Sales Operations - Eric Ligman

Eric Ligman, Microsoft Director of Business & Sales Operations Blog

Microsoft expands its Small Business sponsorship in NASCAR

Today, we are announcing an expansion of the Microsoft Small Business sponsorship in NASCAR with Michael Waltrip Racing, imagecontinuing on our commitment to connect the Microsoft Small Business Specialist Community (SBSC) with the more than 21 million  small and home-based businesses in the U.S., and you can participate! This new sponsorship with Michael Waltrip Racing is designed to help the participants reach out to the 75 million fan base of NASCAR (that is 1/3 of the adult population in the U.S.!) along with Microsoft in a way not seen as financially available to many before.

Microsoft is an associate sponsor on Michael Waltrip Racing’s #00 NASCAR Sprint Cup Toyota Camry entry, driven by rookie imagesensation Michael McDowell. This started at the Aaron’s 499 race at Talladega Superspeedway with the placement of the Microsoft SBSC ‘Blue badge’ on the side of the Team #00 car and is continuing for the remainder of the 2008 season. Michael Waltrip is considered to be an icon in the NASCAR world by many and his role as a brand ambassador is well known. Through this sponsorship, participating partners will be able to be associated with the Michael Waltrip brand as a sponsor and use this to help promote and grow their own company’s brand awareness.

To kick off this exciting new opportunity, the Michael Waltrip Racing #00 car will feature a full car Microsoft Small Business and SBSC imageprimary sponsorship design for the June 1st race at Dover International Speedway in Dover, DE. In addition, the Microsoft Across America Mobile Event Experience Truck will be in the newly designed “Fan Zone” at Dover International Speedway throughout the race  weekend where fans can come to view and learn more about Small Business offerings from Microsoft and this sponsorship. Fans will also have the opportunity to meet Michael McDowell, driver of the Michael Waltrip Racing #00 car, during a Meet & Greet and autograph session at the Microsoft Across America Mobile Event Experience Truck on Sunday before the Sprint Cup race. The car will also feature the “” URL in its design. This is a new section on the Microsoft Small Business Center designed to provide Small Businesses and Partners focused on Small Business with quick access to many of the resources and information available to them to “Tune up” their businesses. After all, like a fine tuned, high power engine drives racing success, fine tuned, high power IT drives business success.

imageAll three of Michael Waltrip Racing’s (MWR) cars (#00, #44, #55) are in the top 35 in owner’s points, which means they are   guaranteed to be on the track for the upcoming races of the 2008 NASCAR season. In the event the #00 car is not in a race for whatever reason, MWR will put the SBSC Blue Badge onto one of its other two cars for that race, so it continues to have on track presence throughout the entire 2008 NASCAR season. This sponsorship will feature the Microsoft Small Business name as well as the Microsoft Small Business Specialist (SBSC) ‘blue badge,’ which designates those Microsoft Partners who specialize on servicing the needs of small businesses.

This sponsorship, which showcases Microsoft Small Business Specialists as well as our Microsoft Small Business technologies, will hopefully not only raise more awareness of the professional solutions, services and assistance available to small businesses everywhere from Microsoft and its Partners, but it will also provide an opportunity to better connect our Microsoft Small Business Specialist Partners and the Small Businesses themselves across the US. In addition to brand awareness, this sponsorship provides participants with an entire package of benefits they can use to market and grow their businesses, such as:

  • Images of their company’s logo on the #00 car

  • Custom sponsor logo suite – Proudly display your sponsorship of NASCAR Team #00 through the use of multiple logos, icons and pictures, which can be used in any promotional materials you distribute.

  • Custom Press Release – Highlight the name of your company, as a NASCAR team #00 sponsor, which you can use to promote your new sponsorship

  • Hot Pass Race Sweepstakes – 4 Hot Passes to 2008 NASCAR Sprint Cup Race

  • MWR Show Car & Microsoft Truck Sweepstakes – Imagine having BOTH a Michael Waltrip Racing Show Car and the  Microsoft Across America Mobile Truck for a one day event at your location

  • MWR Raceworld Fantasy Weekend Sweepstakes – Passes to Michael Waltrip’s Raceworld, including lunch with an MWR executive

  • Custom “On-Hold” Messages for your business, including recordings by Michael Waltrip himselfimage

  • Race Ticket Rebate – Up to $150 towards the purchase of two General Admission Tickets to the race of your choice

  • Sponsor Community Site – intranet for sponsors to share ideas and network on best practices for getting the most out of their sponsorships

  • PR and Media Discounts – Rebates of $250 – $1,000 for radio advertising or TV advertising in the market of your choice, and radio or TV commercial production (see full details on signup page)

  • Newsletter Publicity – Be listed in the Michael Waltrip Racing Newsletter as a proud new sponsor of the #00 car. This presents a great opportunity to showcase your company to the distribution list, sponsors and team members of Michael Waltrip Racing

  • Newsletter Distribution – Receive the Michael Waltrip Racing Newsletter. This presents a great opportunity to network with others in the Michael Waltrip Racing family.

  • Exclusive promotional pricing, as low as $3,995 for Microsoft Small Business Specialists, which includes all of the above for the remainder of the 2008 season. This is a one-time fee only and it gets you all of the items above for the remainder of the season

  • Full details on how you can participate and all of the included benefits for your company are available on the sponsorship signup page

You can view some pictures of the car in production HERE

So as they say, “(Ladies and) Gentlemen, start your engines!”

Thank you and have a wonderful day,

Eric Ligman
Microsoft US Senior Manager
Small Business Community Engagement
This posting is provided “AS IS” with no warranties, and confers no rights

Add to Technorati Favorites