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Harrah's Will Run $15 Million Television Campaign - Uses Anticipation as Motivator
MEMPHIS, Tenn., April 26, 1999 -  Harrah's Entertainment, Inc. (NYSE: HET) has hit a fevered pitch with its national advertising campaign for its Harrah's brand scheduled to roll out April 28. Two 30-second black and white television spots, which will later be supported by black and white print advertisements, will run in a number of the nation's largest markets. The TV spots' soundtracks feature a spicy rendition of the well-known song "Fever," giving dramatic emphasis to the anticipation the customer feels on his or her way to a Harrah's casino.

The $15 million campaign will include television spots in Harrah's primary feeder markets: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Dallas, Houston, St. Louis, Kansas City, Memphis and Phoenix. Harrah's, with 15 casinos in 10 states, is the only nationwide brand in the casino industry.

The first TV spot features a woman driving her car on a deserted highway. A quick series of montages -- cutting from her diamond ring to her lucky dice key chain to the car's gear shift -- represents the gambler's anticipation of a great night at Harrah's. As the car passes a Harrah's billboard, the announcer says, "Cinderella had her night -- why shouldn't you have yours?" When the car pulls up to the casino, the Harrah's logo appears in color and the announcer says, "When you're ready, we'll be here."

The second TV spot is set on a plane about to land in Las Vegas. A man wearing a fashionable watch fingers his lucky coin and checks his billfold in anticipation of arrival. The announcer says, "Whoever said it isn't whether you win or lose wasn't playing for money." The plane lands, and the Harrah's logo appears in color as the announcer again offers: "When you're ready, we'll be here."

Both spots close with: "Harrah's. Your biggest nights happen here." -- developed as the company's tagline in 1998.

"We were looking for a campaign speaking to the savvy player, stirring the emotion of the gambler who seeks an unforgettable night," said Gary Loveman, Chief Operating Officer of Harrah's Entertainment. "The campaign establishes Harrah's as the casino brand offering the most exciting and rewarding gambling experiences for those players."

In research conducted with casino players, the TV spots instilled a sense of "confidence" and "quiet intensity," said Roman Paluta, Group Account Director at Carmichael Lynch. "Our target audience puts themselves into our spots," he said. "The campaign really gets inside the head and the heart of the avid customer." Paluta said Carmichael Lynch chose to present the empire campaign in black and white to capture the feeling of fantasy and escape that one can experience in a Harrah's casino.

The director of the television spots, Jonathan Teplitzky, is a native Australian who grew up in Sydney. He attended film school in London, and in 1990 directed 30 short music films for a major record label. Since that time, he has co-directed a BAFTA winning documentary of writer Anne Rice for BBC Television and moved back to Australia to live and work.

Founded in 1962, Carmichael Lynch has built a reputation as one of the most creative advertising firms in the world. The agency serves a diverse list of well-known clients throughout the United States, including Korbel Champagne, Harley-Davidson Motor Company, Volvo Tracks of North America, Schwinn Cycling and Fitness and Porsche automobiles, among others. Carmichael Lynch is owned by the Interpublic Group of Companies (NYSE: IPG), New York.

Harrah's Entertainment, Inc., the most recognized and respected name in the casino entertainment industry, operates nationwide under the Harrah's, Showboat and Rio brand names, and Star City casino in Sydney, Australia. Founded more than 60 years ago, Harrah's is focused on building brand loyalty and brand value with its targeted customers through a unique combination of great service, excellent products, unsurpassed distribution, operational excellence and technology leadership.

Beth Rooks 
of Harrah's Entertainment, 
or Dave Curley 
of TBC Public Relations, 
for Harrah's Entertainment
Also See: U.S. Franchise Systems, Inc. Promoting Brands on National Television / March 1999 
Publicis Designs TV Ad Campaign for La Quinta / April 1999 

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