To answer the above question, in short – no! Well, at least that’s what the sponsors themselves say.
Euro 2012 sponsors Carlsberg, Orange and Castrol are all focusing their marketing/sponsorship activity on social media to avoid being overshadowed by the likes of Coco-Cola and McDonald’s, which are also sponsoring the London Olympics.
Social media has developed a lot since the last European Championship in 2008 so it does make sense that sponsors are utilising this platform in conjunction with their sponsorship!
A recently published article in Marketing Week investigated the activities by sponsors with less than 5 weeks to go until the opening match.
Carlsberg has launched a Facebook campaign that encourages fans to show their support for England via a series of challenges as part of a wider multimillion campaign. David Scott, director of marketing for Carlsberg UK, says “we’ve never previously used Facebook on this scale to understand the England fan and talk to them about what they know and love about the game. Consumers tell us that the Olympics don’t give the same sense of drinking occasion that a football match does, so we’re applying this insight to drive sales in pubs and supermarkets”.
Castrol is now using the predictions from its EDGE Index – the official tournament ranking system – to respond to fans in real-time on Facebook and Twitter. This means they will enjoy a lot more interaction with fans which will of course raise brand awareness.
Orange, similar to the other two, has also made interaction the brands biggest priority for its Euro 2012 strategy. The network is focusing the bulk of its marketing on direct channels, such as using social media for its Supporters’ Cup competitions and launching the official Euro 2012 mobile app.
All three sponsors will support their online presence by in-store, outdoor and press activity as the brand looks to engage with fans across multiple touch points. In addition to this, they are all confident that their social media marketing strategies will create the amount of interactions needed to provide a return on investment in their football sponsorship.
What will be interesting to see is how they are all measuring their marketing, particularly online to assess the return on investment!
Marketing Week, Euro 2012 sponsors step out of London Olympics Shadow, May 2012