Davis Elen Advertising has an out-of-the-box way to make Los Angeles a pro football kind of town again: Make the San Diego Chargers the favorite team for local fans.

The downtown L.A.-based media-buying agency recently won the account for the Chargers, the nearest National Football League franchise to Los Angeles. Jim Kelly, a partner at Davis Elen, said the team sells a lot of season tickets in the Inland Empire. Ticket sales in Los Angeles have been modest, but have climbed in recent years.

“The fans are starved for football,” Kelly told the Business Journal. “Since Los Angeles and Orange County don’t have professional teams, the Chargers are really the only destination for NFL enthusiasts in all of Southern California.”

The team selected Davis Elen because the agency promised to negotiate lower media prices, Kelly said, by grouping the team with other big clients such as McDonald’s and Toyota.

The account will include a Latino effort handled by Castells & Asociados, a Davis Elen sister agency that’s also based in downtown Los Angeles.

What if Los Angeles gets a team next year? Kelly said he’ll still be able to sell the Chargers because it’s a top-tier franchise.

Also, Davis Elen will try to get the Chargers more editorial coverage on L.A.-based sports media such as ESPN and Clear Channel radio stations.

“We are going to use all our Los Angeles and San Diego connections to get more exposure for the players, which will help in turn to sell tickets,” Kelly said.

Hispanic Harrah’s

Walton Isaacson is the new Hispanic agency for Harrah’s Entertainment, the Las Vegas casino operator.

Based on the Miracle Mile, Walton Isaacson was formed as an African-American agency backed by Earvin “Magic” Johnson. The agency recently hired Rochelle Newman-Carrasco, former chief executive at Hispanic shop Enlace Communications, to get more business in the Hispanic market.

The move exemplifies a trend of agencies to fully integrate their ethnic businesses instead of keeping them in separate divisions.

Walton Isaacson won the business thanks to its experience connecting niche audiences with expensive products. For example, the agency recently won a Telly award for a campaign on behalf of Lexus targeting African-American car buyers.

“We immediately knew Walton Isaacson was the right agency to propel our Hispanic marketing efforts forward as they were able to demonstrate past successes with luxury brands, a sound approach to the challenges presented and attention to detail,” Marty Turman, director of multicultural marketing at Harrah’s, said in a statement.


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