Dan Le Batard spoke yesterday on his radio show about trying to buy full-page ads in the Akron Beacon-Journal and Cleveland Plain Dealer, and getting rebuffed by the newspapers. An unofficial mock-up of the ad — saying “You’re welcome, LeBron” from Miami Heat fans, who were not thanked in the “Coming Home” letter — is to the right.
[Update: Le Batard says he just got a price quote, but did not attempt to purchase an ad.]
“I just don’t think it was appropriate for our community,” said Beacon-Journal publisher Mark Cohen. “We’re proud that LeBron is back, this is his hometown, and that [ad] is not something we want to be a part of or want to take money for.”
Jim Romenesko quoted the price of an ad in the Beacon-Journal at about $12,000; Plain Dealer representatives declined to comment on the ad cost to him, but a producer told Le Batard’s co-host that it would cost about $90,000 for a full-page color ad (presumably on a Sunday).
“The head of advertising [for the Cleveland Plain Dealer] has said the newspaper industry is flourishing with so much money that we do not need yours,” Le Batard joked on his show.
Le Batard was planning on running a Kickstarter campaign, and implied that he had some deep-pocketed anonymous benefactor(s) (perhaps within the Heat organization) lined up. After having his plot rejected by the newspapers, he wondered whether he’d be able to purchase Cleveland-area billboards or an ad in the USA Today.
Here’s a partial snippet of Le Batard’s audio segment from yesterday: