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A summary of the most exciting news in soccer marketing. If you’re trying to keep up, consider this your one-stop shop.

  • The Portland Timbers announced a multiyear partnership extension with Alaska Airlines. As part of the continued partnership, the airline’s wordmark will continue to be featured prominently on Timbers game kits and club apparel. In addition, Alaska Airlines will continue to serve as the team’s official airline. As Founding Partner of the Timbers, Alaska Airlines has been the club’s jersey partner since its inaugural 2011 MLS season.

  • Telemundo, the exclusive Spanish-language home of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia, announced the launch of “El 12”, a new, bilingual digital initiative to search for the next generation of top soccer influencers in partnership with the global soccer media company COPA90. The selected creators will be tasked to share their passions, experiences and Vancouver Whitecapshow they celebrate their national team with family and friends while building excitement and awareness of Telemundo’s Spanish-language coverage of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia.
  • The Vancouver Whitecaps (of MLS) announced a multi-year sponsorship agreement with Ford, as the official automobile of the franchise. In addition, the carmaker will attach its name to a family zone in a designated seating section of BC Place Stadium during Whitecaps home games. Ford will also sponsor the ‘Caps Clubhouse presented by Ford,’ a concourse activation space targeted towards parents and kids.

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  • PepsiCo extended its partnership with UEFA. The company will continue to sponsor the Champions League for three more years with six PepsiCo brands including Pepsi Zero Sugar, Lay’s Neymar Jrand Gatorade.
  • Neymar Jr announced his plans to bring his global five-a-side team tournament to the US. The tournament will take place in 17 US cities and crown new champions in both the male and female divisions. This will be the third season of Neymar’s signature tournament.
  • FOX Sports launched a new weekly soccer podcast, Alexi Lalas’ State of the Union, expanding its digital offerings and podcast portfolio ahead of the World Cup this summer.

 

What: Stuart Holden hosted a charity football match for Hurricane Harvey relief in Houston.
Why it matters: This event demonstrated how sponsors, athletes, and influencers can come together to make a difference.

Football Philanthropy

On Saturday night, United States soccer legends and celebrities alike joined together to play in a charity match titled “Kick In For Houston” to provide relief for victims of Hurricane Harvey. Stuart Holden, who starred for the Major League Soccer’s Houston Dynamo before moving to the English Premier League, organized the event. Holden leveraged his connections from his playing days as well as his star power from his current broadcasting position at Fox Sports 1 to fill the field with notable personalities. The match and a halftime penalty shootout, highlighted by former Olympic skier Bode Miller’s top corner strike, combined to raise over $250,000.

…influencers of all kinds can be used to draw eyes to charitable ventures as well as other domains of sports marketing.

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Famous Personalities Hit the Pitch

The list of names in attendance was quite impressive. Former national team players included Landon Donovan and Mia Hamm, and veteran Clint Dempsey showed that he has more left in the tank with a tremendous bicycle kick goal. In addition, plenty of athletes from other sports participated in the event. Recently crowned World Series champion Alex Bregman of the Houston Astros snuck onto the field at the end of the game despite his team’s request to fully rest, but the game was too enjoyable to resist. Also in attendance were former NBA MVP Steve Nash and Chad Ochocinco, formerly a wide receiver for the Cincinnati Bengals. Notable as well was the presence social media sensation Jake Paul, who was voted the top YouTuber at the 2017 Teen Choice Awards, which shows how influencers of all kinds can be used to draw eyes to charitable ventures as well as other domains of sports marketing.

It was refreshing to see a media company support the philanthropic initiative of an employee.

Fox Sports Shows Support

Sponsors for the event included the Houston Dynamo, Esperos SOHO, and Adidas. Holden’s employer, FS1, showed a replay of the match on Sunday in order to bring further awareness to families still affected by Hurricane Harvey. It was refreshing to see a media company support the philanthropic initiative of an employee, especially one as genuinely invested in the Houston community as Holden.

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Which sports sites are the most visited by US Hispanic users? What types of content do they provide? Do US Hispanics prefer visiting news sites or the websites of their favorite sports leagues? Read on for the answers to these questions, drawn from comScore’s April 2017 rankings.

This month, the percentage of sports content consumers remained at 70.7% of all US Hispanic web users who regularly visit sites with sports-related content.

Source: comScore MMX Multi-Platform, Sports, U.S., Hispanic All, April 2017, Desktop 2+ and Mobile 18+ Total Unique Visitors/Viewers (000)
Total Digital Population
   Total Internet: Hispanic All35,703
   Sports26,822
1   ESPN11,610
2   Fox Sports-SI Group-Perform Media8,235
3   Bleacher Report – Turner Sports Network7,435
4   SB Nation7,232
5   Yahoo Sports-NBC Sports Network6,586
6   USA TODAY Sports Media Group6,252
7   CBS Sports5,459
8   MLB5,339
9   NFL Internet Group5,075
10   Minute Media2,517

 

It’s worth noting that, even though the ranking is specifically focused on the Hispanic market, none of the Top 10 sites offer content in Spanish. This tells us that these new generations of digital consumers with Hispanic roots prefer to get their content in English.

On the other hand, the number of content consumers increased by more than two million in the last two months. This is explained by ESPN, ranked first, which posted an increase of two million visitors, to 11.6 million. In general, all sites received more attention since our last ranking in February.

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Moving up in the ranking is MLB. A couple of months ago it was ranked 10th tenth, while this month it moves up two notches to eighth place. This may be due to regular season games, as fans look to stay up to date on each game’s results. With 5.3 million hits, the Major League Baseball site has more than doubled its visits compared to a couple of months ago.