Linsanity may have abated in the streets of New York for the time being, but that doesn’t mean folks in China have stopped paying extremely close attention to the exploits of the New York Knicks point guard.
That fact alone was enough for Volvo, a Chinese-owned company, to sign the 23-year-old up for a two-year endorsement deal. The press conference (which you can watch below) highlighted that Lin’s promotional efforts “will focus on China, the United States and other Chinese-language markets in Asia.”[more]
The populous Chinese marketplace is becoming more and more of interest to NBA marketers and its players. As the Huffington Post points out, LeBron James made deals there earlier this month to promote Dunkin’ Donuts and Baskin-Robbins. All part of a pro athlete’s healthy diet, of course.
So why Volvo? Well, Lin points out that the connection isn’t immediately clear. “You may not immediately see the connection between me and Volvo, but both of us are striving to be better and smarter at what we do, and to do it our own way,” the 23-year-old Harvard grad said at the news conference, as noted by the Los Angeles Times. “I hope that my efforts will inspire more young people to follow their ambitions in sports and education, just like Volvo Car Corp. is designing cars around people’s ambitions in life.”
Volvo lost no time getting Lin’s name into its social-media efforts, noting on Twitter that Lin said he’s like the Volvo S60: “fast and agile.” On Facebook, the automaker refreshed its Timeline banner, saying “Meet the newest member of the Volvo team: Jeremy Lin.”
Lin’s first commercials for Volvo could hit TV in June. Linsanity or not, this kid isn’t going anywhere, folks.