You may have seen some recent press around NBA Orlando Magic center Marcin Gortat. A Polish newspaper published a photo of Gortat after game one of the NBA Finals that prominently displayed the Michael Jordan/Nike tattoo on Gortat’s lower right leg. Gortat, a native of Poland, has a shoe contract with Reebok. According to Tim Povak of Fanhouse.com, Reebok asked Gortat to either cover the tattoo with his socks or with make-up for the rest of the finals. Gortat said “that ain’t going to happen,” noting he had the tattoo when he signed with Rebook and it wasn’t a problem then.
This reminded me of the events that took place at the 2006 World Cup in Stuttgart, Germany where Dutch fans wearing orange lederhosen with the Bavaria Beer logo on them were required to remove their pants because Bavaria is not an official sponsor of the World Cup. This action was taken by FIFA on behalf its sponsor Budweiser.
These could both be considered forms of ambush marketing. However, a major point of differentiation is that Gortat is paid by Reebok, whereas the Dutch fans paid to attend the World Cup. It wasn’t Gortat’s intent to ambush his sponsor and it is debatable that Bavaria Beer’s intent was to ambush Budweiser. I can see both sides of this, but I wonder what the ultimate impact of these actions is on how consumers view these sponsors. Does the publicity draw more attention to the situation and their competitors’ brands then if there wasn’t any type of intervention? I would like to hear your opinion on this.
According to the latest projections from IEG Sponsorship Report, worldwide sponsorship spending on amateur and professional tennis tournaments and sanctioning bodies will total $581 million in ’09, a 1.3 percent increase from ’08.
Pressured by the global economic downturn and fallout from cutbacks in the financial services and automotive categories, the increase is down significantly from the eight percent rise in ’08 and 10 percent increase in ’07.
Case in point: The ATP Los Angeles Open is going without a title sponsor this summer following the loss of mortgage crisis poster child Countrywide Financial Corp., which was purchased by Bank of America Corp. last year. more
Hello IEG friends, fans, newbies, etc.
Well, come on in! This is my first entry to the IEG blog thread, so I thought maybe you’d like to know a little bit more about me, what I’m into and the kind of information you can expect to find here when I’m blogging. My name is Shelley and I’ve been with IEG for a few years. Prior to joining IEG, I logged some time in the professional sports world working to help the WNBA Chicago Sky franchise get up and running and develop its sponsorship program. Other than that you should know I’m an avid sports, music, fashion and social media junkie and I will drop just about anything for a Reese’s peanut butter cup.
The topics of interest you’ll find covered when I’m blogging of course include corporate sponsorship (you are at sponsorship.com, right?), but also digital and emerging forms of media, sports and branded entertainment. I’m really looking forward to sharing a part of myself and my time with you as a part of the IEG community so come back often and shoot me an email if there’s something you’d like to hear me weigh in on (firstname.lastname@example.org), hit me up on Twitter (@Shelley_IEG) or if there’s just something cool you’d like to share, post away.
As one of my former colleagues liked to say: peace, love and sponsorship. more
P&G has stepped up sponsorship activity around its Cincinnati headquarters, signing title of Memorial Day weekend’s Taste of Cincinnati and expanding its partnership with last month’s Cincinnati Flying Pig Marathon.
The soap giant activated both deals with a handful of brands, each of which gained ownership of an on-site proprietary program. For example, the Taste of Cincinnati featured the Pampers Stroller Speed lane, the Bounty Quilted Picker Uppers cleaning teams and the Old Spice Swagger Zone, a special seating area where attendees could watch Cincinnati Reds games on a giant TV.
At the Flying Pig Marathon, P&G’s Tide used branded laundry carts to pick up clothing discarded by runners, Old Spice High Endurance deodorant awarded a prize to marathoners who ran the last mile the fastest, while Mr. Clean sponsored the Clean Your Clock fastest split-time award.
The strategy makes a lot of sense: In addition to promoting its hometown presence, P&G was able to make a more meaningful connection with its target audience by integrating its products into the fabric of each event. The multi-brand strategy also allowed P&G to spread the cost of the sponsorships over multiple budgets.
Way to go, P&G. more
If iPhone apps are all the rage, why should sponsorship be immune? The Chicago 2016 bid committee has introduced a “Countdown to Copenhagen” app that marks the days left until the October 2 IOC vote in Denmark to select which candidate city will get the 2016 Summer Games.
Each day brings iPhone users a historic fact about either the Olympics or Chicago along with the days remaining until the vote. Chicago is the first bid city to take advantage of this technology. Given the relatively low cost of developing apps, we expect to see plenty of other properties offering updates and info through this new platform. more
When it comes to sponsorship, the Olympic movement has long been able to do things no other property would be able to pull off, from providing clean venues that eliminate TV-visible sponsor ID to commanding nine-figure fees for rights that are limited to one country. The latest example comes from London 2012, which according to the Financial Times is set to sign McCann Erickson as its official ad agency for a reported fee of 10 million pounds.
Let’s see if we have this straight: Many properties actually pay agencies to create and place their ads. Some properties are fortunate to have agencies provide ad services pro bono. The London Games will have an agency that not only will handle all its advertising, but will pay the equivalent of roughly $15 million for the privilege. The phrase “must be nice” comes to mind. more
Pro baseball is the first sport to go through its full sponsorship selling season (October through March, roughly) since the bottom fell out of the economy late last summer. With a few exceptions, including the New York Mets and Yankees, both of which open their new parks this week, most teams are saying that sponsorship revenue is off going into the season.
IEG is releasing its projection today that sponsorship spending on MLB deals—including the league, teams and stadiums—will drop 4.8 percent this year from $540 million in ’08 to $514 million.
With the IOC Evaluation Commission arriving in Chicago today, Fox Chicago examined the topic of Olympic sponsorship during its primetime newscast last night... more
With sold-out attendance and a full exhibit hall, the first Sportaccord conference to take place in the U.S. was seemingly unaffected by the economy. Held last week in Denver and produced under the auspices of the General Assn. of Int’l Sports Federations (AGFIS), the Assn. of Summer Olympic Int’l Federations (ASOIF), and the Assn. of Int’l Olympic Winter Sports Federations (AIOWF), it draws the heads of sports federations, Olympic bid committees and scores of vendors with products and services for them. more
Those of you who subscribe to IEG Sponsorship Report have seen the March 30 issue’s In Depth article, which takes a look at the Performance Research consumer study I mentioned in a blog post last week. more