NASCAR drives 'Newsweek' impact

Placement: Newsweek, July 3

Placement: Newsweek, July 3

What are NASCAR's media goals, and how have they evolved recently?

Andrew Giangola: I focus on business PR, and our goals are to reach decision makers with stories on the sport's growth, its passionate fans, and the business results companies get by affiliating with us.

What made Newsweek such a good placement for NASCAR and how did you go about pitching the reporters and editors there?

Giangola: Newsweek is a high-circulation national magazine read by fans, potential fans, and decision makers. We had originally worked with our agency Alan Taylor Communications to set up a lunch because we were targeting Newsweek for a cover story on NASCAR. That didn't work out, but we presented senior reporter Devin Gordon with a menu of story ideas, and the one he really jumped on was the controlled chaos of bringing the race to fans via television.

The story required a lot of cooperation from Fox Sports. How did you get it on board?

Giangola: Fox Sports is a great partner, and I had talked with its director of communications Tim Buckman earlier about bringing a reporter into the production truck. When Devin expressed interest, I mentioned it again to Tim, and he was very excited to do it.

What were the major challenges in terms of giving Gordon a firsthand look at the production of a NASCAR race?

Giangola: The challenge for reporters new to NASCAR is to quickly understand a complex sport, but Devin is an inquisitive and thorough reporter. I provided a lot of information on our sport's size and growth, while Tim and his team arranged behind-the-scenes access at Dover International Speedway - from the pre-race show to sitting in the booth and in the Fox production truck.

What was the impact of the hit?

Giangola: The piece generated a lot of positive reaction. We value coverage in outlets that don't cover NASCAR week to week, and Devin totally captured the dizzying speeds and split-second calls, calling it "the toughest gig in TV sports."

Name: Andrew Giangola, director of business communications, NASCAR

Placement: Newsweek, July 3

Pitch timeline: Two months

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