By Barry Janoff
April 1, 2017: It’s good to win the World Series, especially if you are the Chicago Cubs and it took 108 years.
And it pays to be a member of the Cubs if you want to build your own business.
Last season, under the umbrella campaign from MLB, "This," Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo opened the faux Bryzzo Souvenir Co., which offered to "help you to get the home run balls you deserve," with the tag, "We put the ding in dinger."
Response was so overwhelming — the original TV spot has more than 300,000 views on YouTube; and the Cubs provided the company with a lot of product, hitting 199 regular season home runs last year (led by Bryant’s 39 and Rizzo’s 32) — that Bryzzo Souvenir is back for 2017.
Under MLB’s new umbrella campaign, "This Season On Baseball," Bryzzo has added new employees and even a jingle, courtesy of long-time Cubs fan and Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder.
The campaign will air on ESPN, MLB Network, TBS, FOX Sports and FS1; with support on Internet, including MLB digital/social platforms and the Cubs’ home page.
Lead agency is Anomaly, MLB’s creative agency.
Among the new staff members are Cubs’ teammates Javier Báez, Kyle Schwarber, Ben Zobrist and Addison Russell; plus a guest appearance by retired catcher David Ross.
According to the company’s nonexistent financial statement, the plan this season is "Growing the Bryzzo Souvenir Co., (which) means hard work, new employees and wider circulation of their product . . . with widening distribution and developing new ideas for growth."
"It’s been a big year for the Bryzzo Souvenir Co. — demand is off the charts," Bryant and Rizzo explain in the spot. "More home runs means on thing: expansion."
The pair explain that they are looking at any and all opportunities. That includes offering not just home runs but also foul balls and possibly adding new partners, in this case Zorbrist, who hit 18 homers last season and proposes that the company change its name to BryzzoBrist.
Naturally, aggressive sales tactics are part of the plan. "You want 50 baseballs (shipped) to Puerto Rico," Russell says during a phone call. "I’ll get you 100 to Puerto Rico, that’s how much I like you."
Vedder, who has performed in front of millions of fans, is called in to write a jingle.
"I’m nervous but I think I’ve got something: Gone, gone home run, this one’s gonna go/Kiss it goodbye/That ball was Bryzzo’d!"
"I’m nervous," he says to Bryant and Rizzo, "but I think I’ve got something."
He then pounds a rock-style anthem on his acoustic guitar: "Gone, gone home run, this one’s gonna go/Kiss it goodbye/That ball was Bryzzo’d!"
Much to the delight of the company leaders, who offer, "The truth is, only one thing can get us to where we want to be: Hard work, big homers and interns (such as David Ross, seen packing boxes)."
Which actually is three things, but Bryant and Rizzo don’t care as they exclaim, "We put the ding in dingers!"
Additional spots, including more details on Vedder’s jingle pitch, Báez and Russell hard at work and Schwarber’s drive to be recognized as valuable member of the company, will be released during the season.
MLB Unveils 'This Season On Baseball' Marketing Campaign
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