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What: PSG star Neymar Jr has signed on with global banking firm QNB as Brand Ambassador and is a key member of the soccer-centric OTRO digital fan club.
Why it matters: Neymar Jr’s international appeal has never been stronger and is still growing, as the 26-year-old Brazilian star continues his ascent up the Forbes top sports earners list.

Flickr/Antoine Dellenbach

Paris Saint-Germain (@PSG_insidestar Neymar Jr (@neymarjrhas never been bigger. The Brazilian standout has helped PSG to a sizable lead in the French Ligue 1 (@Ligue1_ENGstandings to date with 11 goals, and his off-field success may be even greater. At 26, his estimated income this year is $90 million USD, with Forbes ranking him 13th among sports figures worldwide. A growing portion of that is via sponsorship, with Gillette (@Gillette), McDonalds (@McDonalds), Nike (@Nikeand, more recently, GaGà Milano (@GaGaMilanoWorldand Café Pilão (@cafe_pilaoshowing the breadth of his appeal.

The São Paulo native added two notable partners recently, one on the endorsement side and another in digital communication. This month, Middle East/African financial giant QNB Group (@QNBGroupnamed him as Global Brand Ambassador (expect to see plenty of Neymar Jr-themed QNB marketing soon among soccer circles). This comes following soccer-focused digital platform OTRO (@OTRO) having announced that he is among several international stars signing on to the Players’ Tribune-type site.

Neymar Jr’s social media footprint is enormous: more than 200 million followers on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram alone. This connection with young fans across many lines worldwide makes him attractive to brands like QNB.

In his playing prime and with a five-year contract with PSG in hand, expect to see Neymar Jr’s name even higher on next year’s Forbes rankings.

“We are delighted to welcome Neymar to the QNB family; a man who shares many of the same values with our brand and who is always looking for opportunities to reach greatness,” said Yousef Darwish, General Manager of QNB Group Communications, in a statement. Named one of the 100 most influential people in the world, Neymar Jr is a true sport icon who inspires fans worldwide to strive to reach the ultimate standards of excellence.”

The ambassadorship expands upon QNB’s partnership with Paris Saint-Germain, which includes a sleeve logo on the team kit as well as other financial connections to the club.

 

Join us at PORTADA LOS ANGELES on March 15, 2019 at the Loews Beach Hotel Santa Monica, where we will dive deep into sports and soccer marketing’s preeminent topics. Felix Palau, VP Marketing, Heineken will discuss “How to measure ROI and transfer best practices between sports marketing platforms”. Other speaking engagements include Tiago Pinto, Global Marketing Director, Gatorade who will provide answers to the question: “Will Corporate America jump on the soccer opportunity?”Attendees will also be able to benefit from Portada’s meet-up service of three-eight-minute meetings with top brand executives!

(Flickr-alegermino)

And his connection with OTRO affords Neymar Jr another opportunity to present these and other partners and causes. Lionel Messi, David Beckham, James Rodriguez and Luis Suarez are among the others on board with OTRO, a “freemium”-model site which last week announced a new round of investment.

In his playing prime and with a five-year contract with PSG in hand, expect to see Neymar Jr’s name even higher on next year’s Forbes rankings as the Brazilian national team star continues his ascent into the top echelon of sports figures worldwide.

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Cover Image: credit Fernando Frazão/Agência Brasil

What: We spoke to Jérôme de Chaunac, managing director, Americas for Paris Saint-Germain, about the French team’s recently-opened offices in New York, and how they plan to engage the U.S. soccer fan.
Why it matters: Paris Saint-Germain has been named one of the fastest-growing soccer clubs. In mid-May, the European soccer club opened its first office in New York, to be closer to their American fans and to keep growing in the whole continent.

In the past few years, we have seen how big European soccer teams, such as Bayern Munich and FC Barcelona, are opening offices in the U.S. to be closer to their North and South American fans. Their goals are similar: they all want to become the world’s number one soccer team.

Jérôme de Chaunac, managing director Americas for Paris Saint-Germain.

But how they’ll reach this goal through marketing efforts is unique to each team. We spoke to Jérôme de Chaunac, managing director, Americas for Paris Saint-Germain (PSG), about their arrival in New York and their strategies to become the number one international club.

According to Chaunac, PSG’s main strategy is to become a lifestyle, and not just a sport. Proof of this is their recent agreement with the iconic Jordan brand. This was the first time two powerhouses of sport and style have created a world exclusive collection of over 90 performance, training and lifestyle products.

 

But that is just one more effort among many other strategies. Focusing on the American continent, this is what Chaunac shared with us:

Portada: What are PSG’s main goals for its new office in NYC?

Jérôme de Chaunac: The goal is pretty simple: to become the top sports brand in the world. The goals of opening this office in the U.S. is continuing the growth of our brand, recruiting more fans on the American continent, developing our business and growing our revenues.

The Portada Brand-Sports Summit in Los Angeles on March 15, 2019 (Hotel Loews Santa Monica) will provide a unique setting for brand marketers to learn about the opportunities sports and soccer content offers to engage consumers in the U.S. and Latin America.

Portada: How will you make this happen?

JC: In order to become the top sports brand, we need to win on the field, especially the Champions League and that’s why we have invested heavily on the sporting side in the past few years.

On the other hand, to be able to reset the global ambition, we need to be able to build our brand and appeal not only to soccer fans but to a broader audience. In order to do that, we are positioning the club as a lifestyle brand.

To be able to reset the global ambition, we need to be able to build our brand and appeal not only to soccer fans but to a broader audience.

We are very lucky to have two great assets as part of our DNA. We have Paris, the core of our brand and one of the most attractive cities in the world. The second asset we have is that we are a very young club. We were born in 1970. We have the opportunity to be much more innovative.

So we build a brand for the future and not from the past. That allows us to be very creative and innovative in how we leverage the brand. We have started over the past few years to build that lifestyle, pop-culture, entrainment aspect of our brand, which will allow us to attract more people.

So we build a brand for the future and not from the past.

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Portada: Why are you going after the American continent’s fans?

JC: We have basically 300 million people that say they are interested or fans of PSG. Out of those 300, we have 100 million already on the American continent. Within the top 5 of our markets globally, three are in the American continent: Brazil, Mexico, and the U.S.

We have a very strong fan base in North and South America, and we are going to work on those targets in order to continue to feed those fans with what we are, but also to bring new opportunities for new people to be in touch with the brand and the team. That is why the American continent is so important to us.

Portada: How are you planning to engage those fans?

JC: We have several types of fans. If we try to define some categories, we first have the pure soccer fan, who really is interested in the performance and in the players, and who follows their team on a very regular basis. Those fans we have to reach through a lot of content on how the team is playing and training…

Then we have a broader group of fans who follow the team or the sport less, but who are interested in the lifestyle of soccer. For those we have to bring off-the-field content.

Portada: Which platforms will you use?

JC: Our number one marketing tools will be digital and social because that is where our fans are, especially if we want to target the younger ones.

Our number one marketing tools will be digital and social because that is where our fans are, especially if we want to target the younger ones.

We are going to leverage our own digital and social, but we are also looking at working with local and regional media platforms that we believe are the most relevant in terms of engaging and connecting with our fans.

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Paris Saint-GermainPortada: Are you looking for new local sponsorships?

JC: Our partnership strategy is to grow our number of partners in the region. Some of those brands we will target are global brands that can become global partners but a lot of those brands, especially in Latin America, are either local or regional brands.

We also need to adapt the sponsorship packages we already have to the local situation. Also, we need to localize a bit more the partnership and help them develop some local content that is relevant to the local brand, help them get closer to some PSG assets when they exist, like our academies in the U.S., Brazil, Canada, and soon in Mexico.

We need to adapt the sponsorship packages we already have to the local situation.

Our focus in the short term will be more north than south America because North America is just one big market, while South America is made of several markets, where although they speak the same language, they are very different. We will not avoid a new opportunity if we have one, but it will be more for 2019-2020.

Portada: Do you differentiate your marketing strategies for Hispanics and non-Hispanics?

JC: This is something that we most likely are going to do, but it is a bit early to talk about a specific strategy. We have only been here for three months. Our priorities are first to talk about the brand and make sure we bring much content about the brand in general, and then also start looking to develop the business and how to develop revenue.

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

  • LaLigaLa Liga has extended its partnership with Microsoft. The deal will see La Liga’s content made available to Microsoft News users and on other products including Windows, Microsoft Edge, Xbox Live and Bing. This is the first global alliance signed by Microsoft with a major sports league.

 

  • OTT DAZN has purchased the qualifying matches for 2020 Uefa European Championships, as well as the European qualifiers for the 2020 Fifa World Cup broadcast rights in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. The deal also includes the same rights to the 2018/19 and 2020/21 editions of the new Nations League, which began on Thursday night. However, DAZN won’t provide live coverage of any matches involving Germany, Austria or Switzerland in their respective home markets.

 

  • Major League Soccer locked in its schedule and format for the Audi 2018 MLS Cup Playoffs. The 2018 MLS Cup will be broadcast on FOX and UniMas, and across more than 170 countries worldwide via MLS’s network of international broadcasters.

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  • CONMEBOL.comMediapro has signed a four-year deal with the South American Football Federation (Conmebol) as a production hub. The Spanish agency will provide the international signal for the region’s three major club competition’s internationally and will take care of producing and distributing the Copa Libertadores.

 

  • David Beckham’s new MLS expansion team in Miami has unveiled its name, crest, and colors. The club will be called Club Internacional de Fútbol Miami, as a statement to the Latin American roots of Miami. The Spanish name is expected to be informally shortened to Inter Miami.

 

  • Juventus has extended and expanded its licensing deal with international agency IMG to include the US and Canada. As part of the new multi-year deal, the IMG will develop the Serie A club’s licensing business through its network of Asian, American and Canadian offices, coordinated by its team in Milan.

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  • French soccer team Paris Saint-German announced Socios.com as their official branded cryptocurrency partner. The multi-year deal will see the company work with the team to develop their blockchain strategy to enhance and evolve their fan engagement.

 

  • GoogleSpanish La Liga has partnered with Google in an effort to protect the league’s media rights portfolio from illegal streaming websites. The league is working with Google to block search results that include pirate services.

 

  • The German Football Association (DFB has extended its longstanding partnership with Adidas for another four years. The deal will see the German sportswear giant continue to supply kits to the country’s national soccer teams until 2026.

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

  • https://pbs.twimg.com/profile_images/975880330044325888/RuJuopul_400x400.jpgAdidas extended its partnership with UEFA and will continue representing the Champions League, Super Cup, Youth League and Futsal Champions League until 2021. “As the number one football brand in the world, we have built up a longstanding partnership with UEFA that has seen a great deal achieved in European football,” said Claus-Peter Mayer, VP of sports marketing football at Adidas.
  • Telemundo Deportes will live stream the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia games in Spanish-language on the NBC Sports app, and feature Telemundo Deportes content on desktop computers via a link on NBCSports.com. “Now anyone can enjoy soccer in Spanish-language no matter what app they use, whether they choose to watch through NBC Sports or Telemundo’s own En Vivo App or our local stations’ apps,” said Ray Warren, President of Telemundo Deportes.
  • The Confederation of North, Central America, and Caribbean Association Football has confirmed the 15 venues, including 13 US cities, that will host the 2019 edition of the expanded Concacaf Gold Cup. 2019 Gold Cup matches will also be played in Central America and the Caribbean for the first time.

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  • AFAThe Argentine Football Association (AFA) has agreed on three new partnerships with Chinese firms. Hexindai will become a regional sponsor of Argentina’s national men’s soccer team and will enjoy brand exposure via the AFA website and the federation’s social media channels. Interior design company Der and home appliances manufacturer Vanward will also become AFA’s partners.
  • According to Nielsen, NBC Sports reports a record of 39.3 million Americans watching its presentation of the Premier League on its platforms in 2017-18. This represents a rise of 14%, in comparison with last season’s numbers.
  • The Canadian Premier League announced that Cavalry FC would be one of the founding clubs to play in the upcoming professional men’s soccer league, which will debut in Spring 2019.
  • ESPN signed a multimedia rights agreement with UEFA to continue carrying the UEFA Champions League, the UEFA Super Cup and the UEFA Europa League in Spanish-speaking Latin America, effective 2018/19 to 2020/21. ESPN will carry a total of 71 UEFA Champions League matches each season.

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  • The Brasileiro, Brazil’s top league, will become the first domestic soccer league to stream games live on YouTube. The agreement was brokered by third-party Spanish producer Mediapro
  • LAFCSan Manuel Casino announced a new partnership with Los Angeles Football Club, for the 2018 MLS season. San Manuel Casino will take part in pre-match Fan Fest activation experiences at Banc of California Stadium, and sponsor the City View Club in addition to presenting post-game highlights via in-stadium “Thrill of the Match” broadcasts.
  • French soccer club Paris Saint-Germain is creating an overseas office in New York. This is the club’s third office outside of France, following the one in Doha and Singapore. The team hopes to increase brand visibility, cultivate new partnerships and nurture its growing fan base. Jerome de Chaunac, as Managing Director of the Americas, will manage the office.
  • Nashville MLS announced Ian Ayre as its new Chief Executive Officer. The 55-year-old will be tasked with building and leading the Nashville MLS club. “We are committed to bringing world-class soccer to Nashville, as evidence by the appointment of Ian as our CEO,” said Nashville MLS lead owner John Ingram, in a statement.