Does Football Advertising Represent Value For Money?

Posted: November 14, 2012 in Football
Tags: , , , ,

Will Wonga’s sponsorship deal really see Newcastle fans taking out loans?

How much does advertising in sport really affect us as fans and consumers?

So much fuss has been made of two sponsorship deals recently, with Newcastle United and Manchester United at the forefront of attentions.

Newcastle signed a sponsorship deal with morally-questionable money lenders, Wonga.com, causing a hootenanny of outrage among the nation’s media, as the immorality of this company could have severe repercussions on the supposedly poorer area of Newcastle-upon-Tyne.

The first point to make is that there was a shortage of hysteria of when Wonga emblazoned their names upon the shirts of Blackpool, due to them being a smaller club. This all despite Blackpool being listed as a generally poorer area of the UK than Newcastle.

It’s the idea that due to Wonga being plastered all over the famous black and white shirts of the Magpies, that Geordie fans would instantly dash to using the company and landing themselves in a heap of debt.

I’ve heard no stories of Wonga owning Blackpool Tower by now, so I can only assume this is false. So honestly how much does sponsorship play on the minds of football fans?

I can only speak as a Spurs fan, but I don’t feel that the sponsorship of my club has ever played a part in my decision-making as a consumer.

Looking back at our list of shirt sponsors in my memory and I can honestly say only Thomson affected my family’s choices, but purely on the basis that Tottenham membership holders received a discount on their holidays.

We had a Hewlett Packard printer, but they seemed to be the only printers in existence at the time. In the current clime, I was never tempted to sign up to Mansion for a spot of gambling and I’ve researched Autonomy a few times and still am unsure of what they actually do.

If anything, I feel personally that my decisions are affected in a more negative way by company advertising.

I still won’t use the O2 network due to their past association with Arsenal, and dodged a bullet by not asking for a Dreamcast as a kid for exactly the same reason. A Samsung phone would be boycotted by my fine self, while I also will never Fly Emirates, especially since they’re emblazoned all over Arsenal’s stadium in Ashburton Grove.

I would be interested to find out how many people in the Liverpool and Leeds area subscribed to Vodafone over the past few years.

So why do companies constantly throw millions of pounds at football clubs for the sole purpose of having their logos emblazoned on the fronts of the clubs’ shirts, or in DHL and Manchester United’s case simply the training tops?

They do this surely knowing that it could potentially detract people from their business as it will attract fans of the club. It’s essentially millions and millions of pounds on what can be little more than an ego trip.

In Spain, many clubs go without shirt sponsorship, as companies decide that it is not worthwhile for them to essentially throw money away at teams who could potentially harm their business.

Perhaps rivalries in Spain are so much fiercer than England that it could be detrimental to their hopes to sponsor a club that holds such local ties.

Maybe I’m a cynic and treat every advertisement campaign with a great deal of scepticism. Maybe I’m one of a minority who doesn’t feel his actions in the consumer market is affected by what I see and hear on television, or on the street.

But it feels to be as though the money being pumped into football by companies to advertise their business is of an obscene amount, especially considering what they can realistically expect to get back.

I may be wrong. But for what I’m aware, more people respond in a negative fashion to an opponents’ sponsor than they ever will respond positively to their own shirt sponsors.

So consider unlikely that Wonga will suddenly take a stranglehold on the Geordie nation due to their name appearing on the front of their shirts.

How many Newcastle fans currently bank with Virgin Money after all?

So far their only plans having included taking the naming rights of the stadium and changing it back to St James’ Park. It’s a lot of hysteria for nothing.

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