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Top 4 Sports Marketing Campaigns in 2017

Top 4 Sports Marketing Campaigns in 2017

You all have seen advertisements and campaigns run by well known brands such as Nike and Under Armour. We have chosen 4 great sports marketing campaign, where they were able capture the attention of the viewers, and in some cases, changed their perception on certain topics.

  1. What Will They Say About You? – Nike Middle East

In March 2017, Nike released this video two days before International Women’s Day. The video was shared 75,000 times on Twitter, and had a view count of 400,000 on Youtube of the video in the first two days of its release. The video was about Arab women who were participating in different sports, such as football, boxing, and ice skating, breaking down the social norms in the Arab world.

This video was made to advertise their new Hijab Pro Line for muslim women, which will be in stores next year. The video encouraged women to break down the barriers and obstacles they are facing and to do what they are destined to do.

In an article written by Adweek, Wieden + Kennedy Amsterdam’s group account director Kathryn Addo, said that they created this video with Nike for “the women we wanted to celebrate, and and by doing so, embolden a new generation of young women to shift the way people see sport for women in these markets.”

Beside their products, Nike has been known for their great marketing videos, and this year, they have added another great sports marketing video to that list.

  1. P&G ‘Thank You, Mom’ Campaign Ad: “Strong” (Rio 2016 Olympics)

100 days before the Olympics in 2016, Procter & Gamble, one of the sponsors for the Rio Olympics, released a ‘Thank you, Mom’ video, which they have been doing since 2010. The video shows the impact mothers have on their children, and how their presence can help their children, who in the video are athletes, gain strength and overcome obstacles.

This video not only allowed the viewers to watch the video, but viewers can also click on a link in the video to send thank you messages to their mothers after the video! P&G has just released their latest ‘Thank You, Mom’ campaign for the 2018 Winter Olympics as well.

  1. This Girl Can – What About You?

In 2015, Sport England came up with a sports marketing campaign named ‘This Girl Can’. The purpose of this was to encourage women in the UK to start participating in sports, as the number of women who are participating in sports are much lower as compared to men.

This video got 1.6 million women in the UK to start exercising, and women were more confident to lead an active lifestyle without the fear of judgement.

What made this campaign successful was that Sport England “seeks to tell the real story of women who play sport by using images that are the complete opposite of the idealised and stylised images of women we are now used to seeing.”

By making sure that the consumers can relate to the advertisement, Sport England were able to accomplish their goals and have a successful marketing campaign.

  1. We’re The Super-humans | Rio Paralympics 2016 Trailer

How could we leave the best campaign of 2016 out? This campaign not only help the Paralympics to be sold out for the first time ever, but it also delivered Channel 4 its biggest TV audience in ten years. Up till today, the number of views on Youtube for the video is 8.5 million.

What made this a successful marketing campaign was that Channel 4 was that it gave people a different perspective of those with disabilities. Viewers now know that those with disabilities are not any different from us, and that they can do accomplish anything they want to. 59% of people felt that the video improved their perception of people with disabilities.

In conclusion, whether it is to get people to lead a healthy lifestyle or to show that nothing is impossible for those with disabilities, these brands were able to put themselves in the shoes of their consumers and tell the story.

Anyone can create a sports marketing video, but what makes one better than the rest is how it will leave an impact on its viewers.

Traditional Marketing Vs Sports Marketing

Traditional Marketing Vs Sports Marketing

As the rise of technology has paved the way to new methods for marketing, many companies have replaced traditional marketing with other marketing tactics. Traditional marketing is the use of promotions, advertisements and campaigns by companies for use which have a proven success rate.

Examples of traditional marketing are flyers, newspaper advertisements and billboards. On the other hand, sports marketing is the use of sports to sell or promote a company’s products or services.

So, what are some key differences between traditional marketing and sports marketing?

  1. Target Audience

In sports, there are a group of people that are called ‘fans’. These fans are the reason why sports is how it is today. Without them, professional sports would not even exists, and we would not have known the likes of Lionel Messi and Lebron James. By using sports as a leverage, sports marketing companies are able to reach out to these fans to purchase their products or services.

An example of a company that successful reached out to the fans is Carlsberg. Carlsberg has been a sponsor for Liverpool Football club for over 25 years, playing the role as the club’s Official Beer. In 2017, they created a limited edition beer “using unique research and state-of-the-art technology that harnesses the atmosphere generated by fans.”

Traditional marketing is limited to the local audience. With the use of newspaper advertisements, posters and brochures, companies use these traditional marketing methods to reach out to their audience. The target audience for traditional marketing is, to simply put it, the public.

Anyone who drives can listen to radio advertisements in their car, while those who read the newspaper can see these advertisements while catching up on current affairs. Traditional marketing is suited for everyone, and it is not narrowed down to a specific group or people.

  1. Different ways to reach Target Audience

In the case of traditional marketing, the use of advertisements on newspapers and magazines, commercials on radio and television, flyers, posters and billboards, are some of the ways companies use to reach out to their audience. As you can tell, this leaves them with almost no interaction between the company and the audience.

By using traditional marketing methods, you would not get much feedback from your audience, and there is no engagement between the audience and the company. The goal for traditional marketing is to get people interested in their products or services through their advertisements and commercials.

In recent years, companies who have adopted sports marketing strategies have moved on to digital platforms to engage with their target audience. In a #SCORE 2016 report, it states that,” 65 percent of Gen Z and younger Millennial fans are consuming sports content on a mobile device.”

Hence, social media platforms such as Twitter and Snapchat are used by these companies to build a relationship with the fans. By providing regular sports content to assist their marketing efforts through social media, it gives them the opportunity to build a relationship by engaging in conversation with these fans.

Virtual Reality in Sports Marketing

Virtual Reality in Sports Marketing

Since the release of Virtual Reality (VR) headsets in 2016 such as the Oculus Rift, VR has taken the sports industry to a different level. This gave fans an opportunity to get an experience which was once never considered possible.

The first time VR made its debut was in the 1990s, but it did not go well and it ended up being a failure. Right now, it looks like VR will be here to stay.

So how will VR affect the sports marketing industry?

Before the European Championship took place in 2016, Nike released an 360 degree advertising video named ‘Half-Time Speech’ ft. Arda Turan a 360º Virtual Reality Experience where fans get to experience what it is like to be in the changing room of the Turkish National Team, while Arda Turan, the captain of the Turkish National Team, inspires the team with a motivation speech.

At the end, the team goes into a huddle, and viewers will be in the right in the centre of an inspiring team moment.

When I watched the video, it honestly felt surreal, like as if I was there with them in the changing room, listening to Turan’s speech. I felt this was the moment where VR has changed sports marketing, and how companies will use VR to engage with sports fans.

VR would not only provide an opportunity for fans to experience sports on a different level, but sports marketing companies can use that as leverage to run ad campaigns and engage with sports fans. Many brands are looking into running VR billboards to target consumers who are more likely to respond to their campaigns through data analytics.

With VR being the upcoming way for companies to engage with sports fans, it’s no surprise to see companies like Microsoft and Facebook investing on VR. Microsoft released a video on how American Football fans might catch a game in the future.

With the “HoloLens”, which isn’t released for the public yet, fans can choose to see real time statistics, highlights and also get to view the game from different angles that cannot be viewed when fans are in the stadium.

With the ability to find out exactly what viewers are looking at, companies can customize and market their products based on the behaviour of these consumers. They can make purchases to put up digital advertisements during the time where specific players or on the court, or timings of the game, based on their research on the optimal place or time to place these ads.

Besides sports marketing, it has also made a lot of impact in the sports industry in general. In the 2016-2017 NBA season, fans were given an opportunity to watch 1 game every week in VR with no additional cost ($200 for annual NBA League pass). This made them the first league in sports to ever have VR games broadcasted live.

Based on statistics provided by Brandon Gaille, the salary range of NBA fans is $100k+ which is only higher than fans who watch NASCAR in the US. This made it more sensible for fans to watch NBA matches through the annual NBA League pass than to purchase season tickets. This was a great play made by the NBA as they knew exactly the behaviour of their audience and how they could reach out to that audience.

Lastly, VR will also change how athletes train. You must be wondering, how so? Well, VR can help by putting these players in game situations and players can watch and learn how they can improve their game.

Players will get a chance to watch these videos on repeat, and find out the opportunities they did not see during the game, and learn from them. Coaches can use VR to see weaknesses of the opposition team, and how they can set their team up before the next game.

In conclusion, VR will be the future of sports in general, and many sports marketing companies will look to using VR to run advertisements and marketing campaigns. With VR, it will take engagement between fans and the sport they love to a whole new level.

What Does a Sports Marketer Do?

What Does a Sports Marketer Do?

There are two types of sports marketing. One, is marketing through sports, the other, is marketing of sports. This means that, there are different roles sports marketers would have to take when they are doing sports marketing.

One thing that is not different between the two is that whatever product or service they are selling, the target audience is the fans of the sport. So what exactly do sports marketers do?

The main goal for a sports marketer that is marketing through sports is to position their brand in a way that they will feel would encourage fans to buy from them. This does not necessarily mean that their product have anything got to do with the sport, but by understanding the behaviours of those sports fans and using that to sell their products to these fans.

The purpose for this is to build brand awareness as well as brand loyalty. For example, Carlsberg are sponsors of Liverpool Football Club, and fans of the club would want to purchase Carlsberg because it is associated with the club.

The main goal for a sports marketer who is marketing sports is to promote upcoming events or games so that fans will purchase tickets and merchandise. This involves advertising these events through television commercials, social media, and even have publicity events where athletes participating in the event can meet fans.

Sorry to burst your bubble, but sports marketers do more than sit at their desk and think of funny things to tweet about on Twitter. Sports marketers are required to take on many tasks such as finding the right marketing tactics, plan community events, promoting products and services, managing social media platforms and negotiating sponsorships with other businesses who are planning to market through sports.

In the world of sports, everything moves fast, and an event today can be old news by next week. This is why sports marketers are required to always be on their toes, and keeping up to date with the latest news or trends. Social media is the perfect platform for sports marketers to use for two reason. First, they are able to stay current.

Second, fans use these platforms to engage in conversations and share their opinions. This is why you see many brands use social media to do sports marketing. To read more about how social media impacts sports marketing, click here.

As you can tell, one of the biggest demand to be working in this field is the focus on the business aspect in sports. Big teams make money through ticket sales, club merchandise and sponsorships, while smaller clubs or youth teams would have a different business model, and focus on awareness and community outreach.

In conclusion, a sports marketer objective is to promote the brand or team to drive sales for their company, whether it is marketing through sports or marketing of sports. They are responsible for a wide array of duties, such as advertisements, sponsorships and community events.

Why is Sports Marketing Unique?

Why is Sports Marketing Unique?

What makes the sports industry different than any other industry? What do they have no other industry have? Well, the sports industry has fans. Without fans, stadiums would be empty, many companies would not exist, and professional sports would not be the way it is today. I doubt professional sports would have existed without these fans.

Let’s take some time to understand these sports fans. It has been proven that sports fans make different types of decisions before purchasing products. They would appeal to their emotion and loyalty towards a certain team and player and not make an economical decision.

This is what makes sports fans different to regular customers. Nobody points out at someone and say, “ Hey look, that guy is a converse fan.” However, you can see many fans wearing their favourite club’s jersey and you would know that they are a fan of that club.

Most club fans are loyal to their team. Unlike brands that are not associated to sports, fans do not usually change their loyalty to another brand or club.

Sports marketers can use that as an advantage, and advertise their products through player endorsement or collaboration with the clubs. However, this does not only apply to sports brands. We have seen non-sports brands such as Coca-Cola and Heineken advertisements in sports events.

Why do non-sports brands sponsor in these events? This is because they know that their products are used by these fans. If sports fans watched a commercial before a sporting event on TV and see Heineken as a sponsor, would it not entice fans to purchase Heineken beer for the game? This is why non-sports brands sponsor these events or collaborate with clubs to reach the club’s fans.

Sports marketing is also unique because sports events are not planned. This makes sports marketers always on their toes during sports events as unexpected moments can occur. We have talked about these unexpected events and how some of the brands like Oreo and Snickers have used it to their advantage and their advertisement went viral.

With the rise of the digital age, real-time marketing is easier as fans are always online, on their social media platforms. These fans use social media platforms to share their opinions, get live updates and see what others are saying about the club. This gives many brands a chance to use social media to do sports marketing.

However, sports marketers must understand which platform these sports fans are on. Just by knowing who they are would make a lot of difference as they would channel their resources on the right platform and not waste money.

Sports marketing is also unique because it involves having a relationship with your customers or fans. By having social media accounts to engage with these fans, and understand them even better can also go a long way. This is why many sports clubs have social media accounts and have players to interact with these fans, by posting funny gifs and having Q&A sessions.

In conclusion, sports marketing is unique because of these fans. That is something that no other industry could say they have. These fans enjoy engaging in conversation with sports clubs and share the opinions to them.

Sports marketers can also use that to engage in conversation with these fans when selling their products and services.

Why is Sports Marketing important?

Why is Sports Marketing Important?

Every day you see advertisements on your phone about upcoming sports events, or receive emails on the latest sports products with pictures of famous athletes wearing them. Without these notifications or advertisements, how would you find out new products or latest events or matches? Sports marketing plays a big part in the sports industry right now.

  1. Real-time marketing

This give many brands a chance to use real-time marketing based on sports events. For example, Snickers released an advertisement poster with the caption, “More satisfying than Italian” after Luis Suarez bit Giorgio Chiellini during the group stages of the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Real-time marketing is not easy as events like these do not happen very frequently, but when the opportunity arises and the company successfully tells the story, it would surely make them visible on the internet.

In sports, every game is different, the outcome is unpredictable, and anything can happen during a game. During the superbowl in 2013, there was a blackout which lasted more than half an hour, Oreo’s marketing team took advantage of this and posted a picture on twitter, with the caption, ‘you can still dunk in the dark.’

  1. Using emotions as leverage

Sports marketing gives companies the ability to leverage the emotions fans have towards the sport. However, this means that the companies must know exactly which sport to target as fans behavior differently in different sports. Beverage companies such as Coca Cola and Heineken are using sports marketing as a tool to sell their products, knowing that people will purchase them when watching a game.

If companies that are not related to sports, using sports marketing, it would be needless to say how important they are to sports brands like Nike and Adidas. Every year, these top sports brands spend millions of dollars for sponsorship with clubs and players. When they endorse these brands, it gives them to right to put up pictures and videos with these clubs and players.

Fans would purchase items from a specific brand for various reasons. First, they might choose that brand because they have been using it a long time. Secondly, they choose that brand because their favourite sports team are sponsored by that brand. Lastly, they choose that brand because their favourite player endorsed by that brand.

  1. A wide range of audience

During the FIFA world cup in 2014, more than 3 billion people watched at least a minute of that global event, and the worth of the media rights was estimated to be about $1.7 billion. By using sports marketing, it allows brands to “piggyback on the sentiments and devotions of fans towards their favourite teams and athletes.” says Kiyoshi Tatani, president of Mizuno Singapore. This shows how powerful this events can be, and why many brands sponsor these events.

  1. Not all organisations can use sports marketing

With all these reasons, one can only think that sports marketing will be very good for the brand for exposure. Yes, I do agree that this will be a very good platform to reach out to a larger audience, however, without proper research and finding out the needs of your target audience, it would do more harm than good to your company.

For example, in 2016, Manchester United captain Wayne Rooney was acting in a trailer for the latest X-Men film. The campaign was a failure, and the only thing it did was made many Manchester United fans upset as they felt that football was turning into a brand and not a sport.

To conclude, with the right idea and execution, sports marketing can help a brand get onto another level and gain recognition. Knowing exactly what the fans want and how their products or services can help the fans will certainly go a long way than just spending money and pray that people will be attracted to the brand.

A Beginner's Guide to Sports Marketing - What is Sports Marketing?

What is Sports Marketing? – A Beginner’s Guide to Sports Marketing

You know the feeling you get when you watch your team play?

Mixed emotions before the game, the heartbreak when your team loses, and pure happiness when your team wins the game?

To some, watching sports is a form of entertainment, while for others, it’s a way of life.

With so many sporting events right now for fans to enjoy, sports marketing is one of the most important pillar for these events.

So what exactly is sports marketing?

To simply put it, there are two types of sports marketing:

  1. Marketing sports as a product
  2. Marketing through sports

There are many ways people consume sports, hence, sports marketing can take on many forms.

Marketing sports as a product involves organisations planning, executing and advertising sporting events.

On the other hand, marketing through sports is making use of sports to sell one’s products or services. Let’s look through some examples.

We have seen Coca-Cola use this form of marketing through many different campaigns. And of course, how can we forget Procter and Gamble’s “Thank you, Mom!” campaign during the Olympics.

These are just some examples of marketing through sports.

Impact of sports marketing

Without marketing, sports would not have as much of an impact on the world today.

Many sporting events rely heavily on marketing.

Otherwise, how can one support their favourite football club or attend games without anyone marketing these clubs or events?

It would be impossible sports to entice huge crowds to watch a game without marketing.

How has sports marketing changed over time?

Sports marketing is not something new. In fact, it has been going on for the past century since sports became a profession.

Think along the lines of advertisements broadcasted through the radio, newspapers, and later, through television.

Now, with the advancement of technology, there are many more channels where sports marketing agencies can tap onto. This includes the likes of the internet and social media.

An example would be how football clubs have embraced social media as a powerful tool to market their brand. From attracting new fans to promoting upcoming matches and also running campaigns, they’ve taken their marketing online.

Check out some of the top sports marketing campaigns in 2017.

Sports marketing in Asia

Being one of the pioneers of sports marketing in Asia, Red Card Global was responsible for designing, negotiating sponsorships and event programs for blue chip organisations. This includes the likes Canon, YKK and Toyota.

One of our most successful events was the Canon Lion City Cup.

This premier youth football tournament gave young footballers from the top developmental sides in Singapore and all over the world a chance to showcase their talent and compete against each other.

We believe that these events should not only be a mere experience, but something to build relationships and unite people.


This is essentially what sports marketing is.

It is more than just fans watching their favourite team play. It is what happens behind the scenes, what happens before the actual event itself.

More so, it is about the power of sports to unite people of different backgrounds towards one common interest.

Sports marketing has been in the market, and will be in the market for a very long time.