New Balance has launched a new ad campaign designed to “celebrate the pure motivation and effort of athletes who play for personal reasons.” The company stated that the it will reinforce the brand’s long-time dedication to performance with the launch of the “For Love or Money?” advertising campaign for 2005.

“We believe our ‘For Love or Money?” campaign will strike an emotional and relevant chord with today’s performance athletes who recognize what it’s like to push yourself for love of the sport.” says Paul Heffernan, Executive Vice President of Global Marketing, Design & Development for New Balance. “This campaign also offers a counterpoint to what everyone else in the industry is doing and looks to stimulate national dialogue on the motivations and values in sports today.”

The full campaign tag line reads “There are two motivations in sports. Which is yours? For Love or Money?”

“This campaign is unique to New Balance because of our long-standing brand values-such as our Endorsed by No One philosophy – that have always celebrated the spirit and authenticity of the true athlete who has heart for their sport,” says Heffernan. “These values are clearly our biggest point of difference and our strongest advantage compared to our competition.”

The “For Love or Money?” multi-media campaign utilizes television, print, outdoor, radio and online advertising to reach performance athletes. The primary media target is 25-49.

The campaign launches during the week of February 28 with a series of teaser ads in USA Today, online and in multiple mobile outdoor locations in four key markets (Boston/Chicago/ San Francisco/Atlanta) featuring thought-provoking questions about the values in sports today. Sample questions include — Can a losing coach still be a good coach?; If no one was watching you play, would you play just as hard?; Which teaches a player more, winning or losing?; Is fighting in sports ever justified? Consumers are directed to to vote on each question.

The “For Love or Money?” campaign includes four 30-second television spots that will run in a national cable buy and local market spot buys in 9 key markets, including Boston, New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Denver, Dallas, Atlanta, Miami and St. Louis. The spots break March 12 and will have heavy emphasis in the March/April and September/October timeframe.

The four television spots look to capture the essence of New Balance’s core beliefs and values. The spot titled “Coach,” celebrates the unsung hero in the lives of amateur athletes. The “Cross-Country” spot showcases true love of the sport of running and pure motivation by emphasizing the “rewards” of amateur athletic competition and highlighting the brand’s heritage in performance running.

The “Basketball” and “Multi-sport” spots capture the energy and effort of doing the fundamental drills in amateur sports. They also highlight New Balance’s product strength outside of running and expansion into other team sports.

The campaign also expands into two additional print components. The first includes brand ads in the “Faces in the Crowd” section of Sports Illustrated that celebrate the spirit of the amateur or everyday athlete.

The second showcases New Balance footwear and apparel products through a “Check” campaign. “The Check campaign highlights how New Balance rewards our athletes with better performance and how they will be “paid” with specific performance elements,” says Heffernan. The Check ads highlight the technical attributes of footwear and apparel products in categories including running, apparel, tennis and training. The campaign appears in vertical running and health/fitness national and regional magazines starting in March including Runner’s World, Men’s Health, Outside, Health, Fitness, Shape, and Tennis.

“This is New Balance’s first national campaign that fully integrates our premium performance footwear and apparel as well as our licensed products such as sockwear, headwear, bags and sunglasses,” says Heffernan.

Boathouse Inc. of Needham, MA developed the creative and handled the media buy. Euro RSCG 4D handled the online media and creative components of the campaign.