Viewing figures not whole picture

The reaction to news that global viewing figures for Formula One have been inflated (MW March 18) suggests that some in the sports marketing industry have taken their eye off the ball.

The true value of a sports sponsorship package is measured by the number of people who respond positively to the sponsor’s brand, rather than the number who watch the event on TV. Sponsorship, after all, is a means to an end, not the end itself.

The most effective sponsorship is the one that creates compelling communications that deliver the brand message. If the message is “sticky”, it will reach the mass market. If it’s not, it really won’t matter how many people watch the event, there’ll be little value in the sponsorship.

Therefore, smart sponsorship directors will not be too concerned with the debate about audience figures. Their focus will be on the tracking studies that measure the effect their sponsorship, and allied marketing activity, is having on their brand.

Rowan Andrews

Managing director

Playmaker Sports Marketing

London N1

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