Sounding Off: Riccardo Tafa: “Can Sports Hospitality Be an Effective Marketing Platform?”
Traditional advertising channels are overcrowding our world. Target audiences are increasingly disenchanted by ads and publicity and more and more unresponsive to commercial break. Can sports marketing hospitality represent a strategic tool for winning over new customers and enhance B2B relationships?
Sport, as a matter of fact, is capable of stirring up passions that bring together a varied audience, who can be reached in a targeted manner through a considered choice of the most appropriate discipline to represent a specific company or communicate a brand's values.
The advantages of using sport do not end with communication towards the end-user but are also expressed in the various forms of B2B Corporate Hospitality.
In this context, a targeted, effective tool is provided by sport hospitality laid on at sporting events.
For example, in the context of championships with a high media profile, such as MotoGp, Superbike and Formula One, a sports hospitality program enables companies to offer both established and prospective customers an exclusive, spectacular experience, right at the heart of the competition on the world's major circuits. In this way it becomes possible to manage B2B public relations in an informal, exciting setting, with the opportunity to establish more constructive understandings based on a shared enthusiasm for a particular competitor or team.
Thanks to dedicated sponsored spaces which can be entirely personalised with companies' colours and logos, guests can watch the race from a privileged vantage point, with every convenience at their disposal, including a catering service of the highest quality and a hospitality service provided by friendly, professional staff.
B2B Sports Hospitality programs also include a series of parallel activities for the entertainment of guests during their time at the circuit. Of these, the most popular are the "Paddock Tour" which gives guests the chance to go "behind the scenes" of the race itself, visiting the places where riders or drivers work side by side with mechanics to bring the drama of the race to life, and the "Pit Lane Walk" in which it is possible, at specific times, to cross the pit lane to see the pits and what goes on in them from up close.
Activities of this kind represent the "added value" of a sports hospitality package as they enable guests to enter into direct contact with the heart of the event and to live experiences that money alone cannot buy. In addition, the emotional impact that such sporting events generates does not just leave participants with good memories but helps to enhance the image of the sponsoring company with positive values.