Branding the World of Sports

Archive for June, 2010

Cool reactions to game winning goal by Landon Donovan

Posted by ZA on June 24, 2010

U-S-A, U-S-A, U-S-A…

Posted in Soccer | Leave a Comment »

FIFA going overboard in prosecution of ambush marketer

Posted by ZA on June 18, 2010

At the 2010 World Cup in South Africa FIFA is attempting to send a message to businesses around the world – “Don’t mess with our event or our sponsors”.  It is not surprising that FIFA is working so hard to control their event, what is surprising is the extend they are willing to go to.

In this case, FIFA is reported to be seeking criminal charges against two ladies who were involved in Bavaria beers attempted ambush marketing at the Holland versus Denmark game.  The women were the alleged organizers of 36 young ladies who showed up at the match wearing orange mini-dresses.  The eye-catching orange dresses were the same color as Bavaria beer, although they did not have any recognizable marks from the Dutch beer company.  Two of the women in the group have been arrested and scheduled to appear in South African court.  They are charged with violating the new (for 2010 World Cup) “contravening the South African Merchandise Marks Act”, which was passed by the government on behalf of FIFA.  In addition, FIFA is said to be filing civil charges against Bavaria.

I get it, FIFA wants to scare off other potential ambush marketers by taking an aggressive stance now.  But FIFA appears to be overzealous in their attack on these two young ladies from Holland.  If they are convicted to serve time in a South African jail, then FIFA and the sponsor they are protecting (Budweiser) are both going to look like huge bullies.  I doubt FIFA cares if they are labeled a bully, but I’m sure Bud cares because they don’t want their multi-million dollar sponsorship to potentially turn consumers against them.  So far Budweiser has remained mum on this matter, but at this point I would expect someone at A-B to give FIFA a call and ask them to lighten up on this situation.

While I’m sure Budweiser is not pleased that Bavaria continues to pull off ambush marketing stunts at events Bud sponsors, sending two young women to jail is going to look over-the-top and reflect poorly on Budweiser.  I know my opinion of Bud would be tarnished if they allow FIFA to push this criminal prosecution into jail time for the women involved.  I have no issue with FIFA bringing a civil suit against Bavaria, but I think that should be the extent of it.  Hopefully cooler heads prevail and the criminal matter is dismissed.

Update: The two Dutch women who faced prosecution in this matter had all charges dropped against them.  Read full story here.

Posted in Soccer | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

AdAge article on stadium sponsorship lists BrandDunk

Posted by ZA on June 16, 2010

Rich Thomaselli used some quotes from our conversation in his AdAge article (click here) on how the Meadowland landing the 2014 Super bowl might help naming rights deal on that stadium.  I thought Rich had a good angle on this story because those events will help to land bigger naming rights deals for Jets/Giants and Cowboys Stadium.  That is likely one of Jerry Jones ulterior motivations behind bringing these major events to Jerry World.

Posted in Sports Marketing, Venue Naming Rights | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

John Wall signs $25 million deal with Reebok

Posted by ZA on June 10, 2010

John Wall, the University of Kentucky standout, who is likely to be the #1 pick in the upcoming NBA Draft has signed an endorsement deal with Reebok.  The endorsement deal is reported to be a 5-year deal worth approximately $25 million dollars ($5 mil per year).  The deal reported includes two signature shoes that will be designed by Reebok for the young basketball star.

This deal by Reebok is a huge step up from what recent draft picks have received from shoe endorsement deals.  It signals that Reebok plans to make John Wall the centerpiece of their basketball marketing efforts.  In 2009, the top NBA Draft pick, Blake Griffin signed a reported $400,000 per year annual deal with Nike.  In 2008, Chicago Bulls top pick Derrick Rose signed with Adidas (who owns Reebok) for an undisclosed sum that was likely in the $1+ million per season range.  Which means the last deal for a top pick that was on par with Wall’s deal was the $8+ million per year deal that 2008 #2 pick Kevin Durant signed with Nike.

The deal that Durant signed with Nike in ’08 was much larger than the deal that #1 pick Greg Oden received from Nike.  Nike has made Durant one of their top endorsement stars over the past few years, which is a pattern that Reebok is sure to repeat with John Wall.  Reebok’s other top NBA endorsement stars include Allen Iverson, Yao Ming & others.

[Assist: Sports Business Daily]

Posted in Apparel & Shoes, College Basketball, Endorsement Deals, NBA, Sports Marketing | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

Nike won’t compromise brand for Women’s footwear

Posted by ZA on June 7, 2010

AdAge article about  the strong growth that Skechers and Reebok are seeing from their marketing of toning shoes to women.  Both Reebok and Skechers grew their market share of women’s shoes close to 200% in the past 12 months.  During that same period Nike and Adidas market share in that category declined (Note: Reebok is subsidiary of Adidas).

The article attributes much of Reebok and Skechers growth to the successful launch of shoes that focus on toning. Skechers shoes have an uneven sole that is supposed to tone legs and butt while you walk in them.  Reebok has recently started pushing similar toning shoes with an aggressive marketing campaign that focuses solely on women’s butts and legs.

While those two brands are enjoying the new toning category, Nike is sitting it out.  Nike says it will “compromise…performance” in their shoes and has not indicated they will release any shoes in these category to compete with Skechers or Reebok.  Instead Nike pointed to a new line of women’s training shoes they will release this Fall.

While I appreciate Nike’s unwillingness to chase a fad, I think they are missing an opportunity here.  I’ve seen lots of women I know wearing the Skechers toning shoes.  Why couldn’t Nike developing something in the space and market it as a lifestyle shoe, thus not “compromising” their standards on performance or training footwear.  Nike needs to be careful here because they might wind up giving up more than just this one (toning) category of shoes, they may wind up conceding a large piece of market share in women’s footwear and apparel.

Can Reebok overtake Nike?

Posted in Adidas, Apparel & Shoes, Nike, Sports Brands, Sports Marketing | Tagged: , , | 2 Comments »