It’s March and that means one thing: March Madness baby! Not only is this an exciting time for the 64 teams vying for their spot as champion, but corporations and companies are also vying for the top spot in sponsorship. Given that the 2017 NCAA March Madness tournament was the most watched in 24 years, paired with record-setting digital consumption, this competition for sponsorship means more than ever. It may be only the beginning, but here are our Final Four predictions for the 2018 NCAA’s March Madness Tournament: Sponsorship Edition.
In this week's "Sponsorship Essentials: Featured Deal of the Week", we're looking at the unprecedented deal struck between the University of Southern California and United Airlines. Announced at the end of January, United Airlines purchased the naming rights for the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum for $69 million over 16 years. This is a monumental deal, and we want to know what you think!
With over 25 years of global experience, Donna Wittmann is one of the leading technology executives within the industry. In this week’s edition of “Sponsorship Essentials,” she speaks towards how technology is transforming the ways in which the sports industry operates, and the challenges that come with that. We also touch on how she got to where she is today, an accomplishment we could pick up tips from!
This week in “Sponsorship Essentials”, we reach across the pond to learn a little bit more about the ever-changing sponsorship market in the cricket world. Gareth Roberts is the Commercial Director at Warwickshire County Cricket Club (WCCC) and Edgbaston Stadium, and I spoke with him about his experience in the industry, where the challenges lie, and how he plans to adapt to them. All signs point to some big things on the horizon for Gareth and the Edgbaston team.
Dan Dillon is the CMO of Arizona State University with an extensive marketing background in the restaurant and consumer world. In Part 2 of “Sponsorship Essentials”, he speaks towards how he got his start, his experience in this industry, and how ASU is changing the way collegiate properties look at branding and sponsorship. With ASU, it’s not merely a transaction, but a deeper partnership. Looking at the way ASU’s branding and marketing is going, other universities may want to follow suit.
The naming rights industry has typically seen its world dominated by the same types of corporations again and again: automotive corporations, telecommunications corporations, and the big banks, among others. The result is arenas and stadiums across the United States bearing household names that are recognized across the country, and the benefits for both parties involved in those naming rights deals are clear. Recently, however, a new kind of business has stepped onto the scene and is taking the naming rights world by storm.
Naming rights occupy the highest point on the sponsorship pyramid and typically carry with them a number of major benefits for all parties included. This is why we will continue to see these investments increase across industry categories, sports and entertainment venues, events and properties around the globe.
How would data gathering help sport marketers and naming rights holders? Firstly, it would help in seamlessly matching the audience to the right consumer segments. For example, if a basketball arena attracts both first time and luxury car buyers, the right data can help in determining who’s who and help the brand create targeted initiatives for each segment.
This paradigm shift requires sponsors and sport marketers to rethink their approach to consumer engagement. Gone are the days that just slapping a logo onto a jersey or on the sidewalls, brands now need to go beyond to appeal to a consumer’s deeper need states. Passion for a sport or a team may not translate into passion for a brand unless there is an overlap between the consumer’s values and the brand’s values.
Drilling for Oil….
Rolling the Dice in 2006, Lucas Oil purchased the naming rights to Colts Stadium in Indianapolis, Illinois. The Naming rights cost Lucas $122 million over a 20 year span. 6 years into this contract Lucas Oil “struck oil” as the Colts had made it to Super Bowl, to top it off Illinois won the bid the same year to host the event that then in turn catapulted Lucas Oil onto an invaluable yet unexpected Global Marketing platform. Lucas estimates this single event alone has increased revenue by $10 million and Lucas Oil hasn’t looked back since.