Volume 91, Issue 75

Wednesday, February 11, 1998



Drunk with golden dreams

By Becky Somerville
Gazette Staff

While Olympians in Nagano may fear the words 'I am Canadian,' Molson Breweries predicts its fellow Canucks also have a few words to be aware of – 'I slept in!'

In an effort to thwart Canadian hockey fans from missing early morning Olympic games, Molson Canadian has launched the 'I slept in' campaign, which offers free telephone wake-up calls to hockey enthusiasts who want to catch the games live.

"Ninety per cent [of Team Canada games] are between midnight and 6 a.m.," said Michelle Robichaud, marketing and public relations officer for Molson Breweries Ontario/Atlantic.

Molson Canadian, a sponsor of the men's and women's Olympic hockey teams, created the concept for wake-up calls when they wondered amongst themselves how they would rise to watch a 4:45 a.m. game.

"[Molson] is committed to hockey and I think Canadians in general are too. Right away we knew it was something Canadians could use," Robichaud said.

Molson Canadian is promoting the 'I slept in' campaign through radio and print advertisements across Canada and the toll-free number to call, 1-800-MOLSON-1, is found on Molson products, she added.

Fans must call one day before the game and indicate which game they want to see. They will wake up to bugles trumpeting a reveille call and an announcement that says, "It's time to get up and watch Team Canada put the others to bed," Robichaud said.

However, not everyone shares in Molson's enthusiasm regarding the wake-up calls. "I will probably just set my alarm and get out out of bed," said Western's hockey head coach Barry Martinelli. Even so, once Olympic hockey gets closer to the key games his team members may want to use the 'I slept in' service, he added.

Bob Chant, director of public relations at Labatt Breweries of Canada would not comment on Molson's initiatives and said Labatt is not engaging in interactive advertising during the Olympics.

Bell Canada, however, is hopping on the interactive Olympic highway by allowing Canadians to leave messages for athletes on a toll-free Olympic Connections Line, said Beth Robertson, manager of advertising at Bell. The number is 1-888-439-TEAM.

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Copyright The Gazette 1998