June 15, 2016

Euro 2016 kicks-off tomorrow in France as one of the least attractive tournaments in decades. And so despite the number of top players participating, and the high number of candidates to win the tournament (which includes usual suspects Spain and Germany and the likes of France, Belgium, reborn England, Portugal and omnipresent Italy), which make it one of the most open in history.

However, a number of negative factors off the pitch have created uncertainty over the Euro 2016 potential success, resulting in increased difficulty to recruit tournament sponsors and to sell broadcasting rights (in holding champions country Spain they were only sold some weeks ago). Concerns over terrorism and fans security, scandals surrounding UEFA and FIFA or the coincidence with Copa America Centenario (which for sure will penalize TV audiences in South America) are among the key reasons why Euro does not bring along the traditional excitement of a tournament of this caliber.

As for player endorsemen...

June 4, 2016

FC Barcelona wins the financial duel but Juventus’ management model is already widely admired

On April 9, 2003, when I started as FC Barcelona’s Chief Marketing and Commercial Officer, and coinciding with a Champions League quarter-final match between Juventus and Barcelona at the old Delle Alpi stadium, I asked to meet with Romy Gai, my counterpart in the Italian team. I wanted to learn from his marketing management model which, at the time, was making them earn 50% more than FC Barcelona on sponsorships (a 27% up overall) with an old stadium that hosted only 20,000 tifossi per game back then.

Juventus would win that tie -with Barcelona’s current manager Luis Enrique playing in both games- and eventually reach the final at Old Trafford, yielding to Milan in the penalty shootout. It was the last great performance by the Vecchia Signora in Europe. That Champions League final would lead to the team’s worst period, where it experienced an administrative relegation and the removal of titles...

October 11, 2015

“Our objective is to catch up with the Premier League and prevent it from turning into the NBA of football”, frequently claims Javier Tebas, President of La Liga. Such statement was made for the last time during the renowned Leaders Sports Summit, which took place this week in London with the presence of most of the main influential figures in the industry and, of course, with extensive media coverage.

How are you planning to do it?, asked perplexed the journalists from the most prestigious English media. The truth is that it sounds highly ambitious and looks like it’s going to be a long process, based on the existing differences between La Liga and the Premier League. Let me elaborate on this.

In the 2013-14 season the Premier League reached its historical revenues record, after increasing club revenues a remarkable 32% to get close to 3,900 million euros. La Liga also set a new record at 1,933 million euros, far from the English competition and behind the German Bundesliga (2,275). The...

October 9, 2015

Just like any other dad worried about his son spending too much time in front of the computer, the console and of course the smartphone, I started to dig more and more into videogames world. As a marketer I was intrigued to understand why he was no longer watching his favorite TV programs (and ads included in them) and what was he actually doing in front of that devices trio all the time. The key learning was that rather than playing himself, he was watching YouTube videos of others playing!

Indeed, my son is just one of millions that keep themselves entertained by watching YouTubers videos on a variety of games, which include the likes of EA Sports’ FIFA, Riot Games’ League of Legends or Valve’s Dota2. In his case, he actually decided to launch his own channel trying to emulate most popular YouTubers, just like a kid would play football in a top football team academy dreaming of making it one day to the first team.

Considering that Prime Time Sport core business is football talent manag...

September 25, 2015

Here we are again with the first players marketing newsletter of the new season, as usual including plenty of activity by brands using football players in their marketing campaigns. And as at Prime Time Sport we love number crunching, another report comes-up just one week after launching most successful Soccerex Transfer Review ever.

This time we have analyzed 3,000 posts by most prolific footballers in the planet to come-up with our very first “Players Social Media Engagement Report”. Opposite to information we are used to see published in the media about players social media accounts, the report focuses on the engagement generated by posts on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, in terms of likes and comments interaction. Furthermore, and for the first time ever, the report analyses the level of effectiveness of posts of commercial nature (normally posts as part of wider endorsement agreements). Here are some of the findings of the report, which you can download here.

Instagram is the ne...

March 8, 2015

Spending around 6mio€ per season sponsoring the most awarded player in the world and realizing that consumers associate him with your main competitor is not precisely good news for a sports marketer. This is what happened to Adidas executives when realized that association of German brand with its Argentinian star is just 58.8%, well below an astonishing 73,5% association between Messi and FC Barcelona sponsors (and former player sponsor) Nike.

Even more worryingly, archrival Cristiano Ronaldo gets 69.6% association with Nike (his most important sponsor) and then 58.8% with Adidas. I would say this is what you should expect considering that your personal most lucrative sponsorship should always get the highest association, followed by the one with the brand that sponsors your team (Adidas in Ronaldo’s case).

This data, extracted from a recently published report by Lagardere (coming from 600 consumer interviews in Spain) confirms the importance of invest...

January 21, 2015

When the great Messi appeared in a Ballon D’Or gala with a fancy Dolce & Gabana suit I am sure I was not the only one to think it was not like him, no matter how cool and expensive the garment would be. Just like when I realized that 2014 Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo was promoting Toyota cars in Thailand and thought, with all respect for the Japanese automotive brand, that linking with a more luxury brand would probably fit him more.

Welcome to the first Prime Time Sport Players Marketing newsletter of 2015, where as usual you will find plenty of player endorsements activity, both in terms of new deals and in exploitation by brands of existing wants.

This time, I propose you to become commercial agents for one day and take you thru the criteria to be used to select the best endorsement opportunities for your players, of course should you represent a strong enough one that can afford to be picky with selection.

The above mentioned examples are just few of many situat...

January 14, 2015

The impossible dream of signing Messi is back stronger than ever to the forefront of the news. CFO’s have started their number crunching following the rumors on a possible bad relationship with his manager and the contradictory player’s statements in the media. We can no longer hear Messi say categorically that he wants to develop his entire career at Barça and this has alerted some of the most powerful clubs, which try to find that if there is a possible way of taking on board the four-time Ballon d’Or winner.

¿How much is it for the Argentinian star?

Signing Messi is not precisely a "bargain". On the one hand, it is clear that with elections just around the corner and with FCB being unable to sign replacements until 2016, the club will never sit at a table to negotiate the transfer of the best player in their history. There is no possible discussion around it and the potential buyer would be referred to the buy-out clause, which is much as 250 million euros in a contract that runs unti...

November 24, 2014

Los jugadores y aficionados de Inglaterra se preparan para un empacho, y no precisamente de turrón, mientras en la Liga BBVA y en la gran mayoría de ligas nos encontramos en pleno parón invernal

Un año más la Premier League inglesa encara un “empacho” de partidos de liga, nada menos que 3 jornadas y 30 enfrentamientos de máximo nivel entre el día 26 –el boxing day- y el primer día del nuevo año, mientras el resto del mundo futbolístico desconecta del balón durante unos días. Una muestra más de que la máxima competición inglesa es especial, y reconocida mundialmente como la mejor gestionada.

A continuación nos disponemos a repasar las 10 grandes diferencias entre la Premier League y el resto. Un conjunto de normas y tradiciones que contribuyen decisivamente al éxito de una competición que inundará durante los próximos días –más si cabe- las pantallas de televisión de todo el mundo.

1. En Navidad, más partidos que nunca

En la Premier League no solo no hay parón invernal sino que se produce l...

November 21, 2014

Portugal and Argentina face each other tonight at Old Trafford. In principle just a friendly game; in reality, the match is yet another episode of the long standing rivalry between Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. A rivalry that does not have a stable winner in terms of success on the pitch overtime -although Messi would probably be ahead- nor in terms of commercial success -probably the other way around for Ronaldo-.

But when it comes to social media, Cristiano Ronaldo is the undisputable “Ballon d’Or”. With a whopping 160mio followers figure, Real Madrid star clearly leads the way with 53% more engagement than Messi (104 mio). In a global top 10 of football players, Neymar would be number 3 with around 80mio followers, rapidly closing the gap with his teammate at FC Barcelona. Players in decline such as Kaka and Ronaldinho would complete the top 5, with Rooney, Iniesta, Özil, James Rodriguez and Gareth Bale following to the top 10. All in all...

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©2018 by Esteve Calzada. 

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