What: A recap of the most important trends in the marketing industry in 2018, including digital content marketing. As seen through the eyes of Portada: What went right? What did we learn?
Why it matters: With one foot in the next year, it’s time to evaluate the paths we took in 2018. We need to see what knowledge and best practices can help us ride the trends in 2019.

Back in 2017, we thought about how to prepare for the new trends the new year would bring us. Last December, experts in marketing and digital content marketing made their predictions public. We started the new year with our hopes high, ready to face the future. Marketing leaders dealt with disruption and emerging technologies. They promised to mature beyond their initial hype. As the year unfolded, we saw those predictions become true. As a result, marketers found different ways to manage the new opportunities each trend brings.

In this recapitulatory article, we take a look at some of the paths marketing and digital content marketing took us in 2018. So far, one thing is certain: the more we evolve, the more we learn. It is time to take a glance over our shoulder. We need to be ready to welcome 2019 with the best possible tools.

1. Artificial Intelligence and Digital Content Marketing

We’ve been hearing for a while about how AI is getting more sophisticated. Brands are adopting AI-powered solutions. They have found it to increase user engagement. However, “Integrating AI with a site’s chat box or Facebook messenger will require perhaps even more creativity and understanding of the brand’s target market,” predicted in February Amanda Hinski, CMO at YMCA, for Forbes. “AI still has to address customer needs and problems just as aptly as a human agent. It helps if the AI experience delights customers in a fun and lighthearted manner.”

In 2018, the ways intelligent machines can help marketers and advertisers multiplied. Through AI technology companies, several brands are already using smart systems and devices. They deploy them for things such as accurate customer segmentation. They also use them for improved customer interactions. “We can’t even imagine where technology will be taking us,” said to us earlier this year Bruno Lambertini, CEO at Circus Marketing. “Data combined with AI and Robotics, with a boost from 5G connectivity, is an explosive combo that opens a thousand opportunities in the world of marketing and communications.”

We can’t even imagine where technology will be taking us.

AI helps numerous brands to enhance their marketing. Actually, most of us interact with AI every day and marketers are increasingly betting on it. Entertainment platforms such as Netflix and Spotify use AI to provide unique, personalized recommendations to its consumers; in fact, about 80% of the content viewed on Netflix is chosen through the algorithm recommendations. Another brand that has pioneered in the use of AI and AR is Sephora. It has its virtual assistant that gives makeup recommendations to its users. BMW, Campbell’s, Hilton, Dior, Lowe’s, Nordstrom, Skype, Levi’s, Taco Bell, Apple, Under Armour… Chatbots are everywhere; according to an infographic by 16 Best, they will power 85% of sales interactions by 2020.

AI Continues to Grow

Recently, Samsung announced it will invest US $22 billion in AI, 5G, and AutoTch, and just last week, Honda launched its new virtual sales-assistant on Facebook Messenger. If these examples weren’t enough, let’s remember how in November Lexus launched the first ever ad commercial written by an AI machine.

Jivox, a marketing technology company, recently announced the launch of two new AI capabilities. They offer brands a first-ever fully personalized customer experience across all paid and owned digital channels. That includes social media, native, display, video, and mobile advertising, and the brand’s email and website. We’ve been interacting with AI for some time, but as most marketers know, we are just starting to discover how much it can really do. And in spite of how we could be afraid of machines, the truth is they help us do better marketing. In the words of Rishad Tobaccowala, Chief Growth Officer at Publicis Groupe, “Because of AI, certain things that machines can do better will be done by machines. But but people plus machines have been found to be better than machines in most cases. The human touch is the difference.”

2. Multicultural Marketing

After marketing crises such as Pepsi and Kendall Jenner‘s failed ad last year, voices all over had a lot to say about diversity. They talked about the correct way to address multicultural audiences. As obvious as it may sound, not every brand knows that ethnic groups should be talked to in ways tailored according to their cultural nuances. As a result, we reached throughout the year to several experts in multicultural marketing in order to find out what is obvious and what is not.

The first thing they all agreed on was that, since the US population is increasingly multicultural, everyone should be doing multicultural marketing. “Looking at the US population current data, as well as the projections, I’d be hard-pressed to believe there are many businesses that wouldn’t benefit from multicultural marketing,” observed Marissa Fernandez, Marketing VP at the NFL, a couple of months ago.

“Multicultural marketing is no longer an afterthought or checked box. It has become a key strategy for business growth,” explained along these lines John Sandoval, Senior Brand and Latino Marketing Manager at Intuit. “It’s time for brands to acknowledge this diversity as well. As long as you have customers purchasing your products, you should be considering multicultural marketing.”

 You have to know you’re being scrutinized or evaluated as to whether you make sense to that person… specifically, they would ask themselves, ‘Do you make sense to spend my heart and money against?

Difficult Path

However, it’s not that easy. Some businesses limit themselves to translating a general market campaign into another language. Or they have an influencer that doesn’t really fit talking about a product. In order for multicultural marketing to work, you need to know who you’re targeting. And as a result, you also need to make sure the connection is real. In the words of Albert Thompson, Digital Strategist at Walton Isaacson, “Consumers are very smart, they can look at a brand and they can tell immediately if it’s for them or not. They may not know if it’s exactly the best for them, but they do know when it is not for them. You have to know you’re being scrutinized or evaluated as to whether you make sense to that person… specifically, they would ask themselves, ‘Do you make sense to spend my heart and money against?”

As the diversity of the consumer market keeps increasing, more and more brands realize that establishing real connections with multicultural consumers is no longer an option, but a must. Everyone has seen the numbers: minority buying power in the U.S. is growing more quickly than the white consumer market, to the extent that the white population in America will constitute only 44% of the total population by 2060, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. 29% will be Hispanics.

On September 25, members of the Agency Star Committee got together in a panel to discuss how multicultural insights make general market initiatives more effective. Their answer is simple: “The buyer out there is multicultural, there’s no way around it,” declared David Queamante,SVP, Client Business Partner, UM Worldwide. “If you’re going to focus on the non-ethnic half of the population, you’re going to miss the mark, period. If you’re not incorporating a multicultural media mix, you’re trying to move the needle but you’re only pushing on half of the audience.”

3. Direct-to-Consumer Brands

Direct-to-consumer brands formed an important trend that grew in 2018. It pretty much exploded in the last years. Big companies like P&G aren’t growing so much as they used to because of these brands that don’t need any intermediaries to reach the consumers. This helps the interaction and engagement a great deal, since consumers feel like the brand actually listens to them.

survey by Diffusion and YouGov has revealed that 81% of US internet users said they would buy at least one item from a D2C brand in the next five years. More specifically, 36% said they would make 1% to 19% of their purchases from D2C brands in the next five years. Convenience was the leading motivator; 27% perceived buying D2C brands as easier than going to a traditional store.

Attraction of DTC Brands

DTC brands are so attractive and successful that Unilever purchased the Dollar Shaving Club, a brand that allowed male consumers to receive economical, stylish razors at home without having to pay for a pricey Gillette razor. After Gillette’s market share fell from 70% to 54% from 2016 to 2017, it decided to launch its own on-demand, direct-to-consumer products. Another example is Covergirl, another brand that has decided to face its DTC competitors full on. After 57 years of selling through retailers, there is now a 10,000 square-feet “makeup playground.” It is equipped with a host of state-of-the-art technology where consumers can test and try products, no intermediaries involved.

4. Voice Search

Voice-based devices are another technology that has been evolving in digital content marketing in the last years. According to Mark Browne, MarTech editor at Portada, Voice search increased by 35-fold between 2008 and 2016, but brands don’t have to re-invent the wheel to make sure they’re on top of consumers’ search results.

  • The smart speaker market spend is ballooning. It will grow from $4.3 billion last year to $23.3 billion in 2025, according to Allied Market Research.
  • Amazon’s Alexa led in revenues in 2017 but Apple’s Siri is expected to grow the fastest. More will be spent in North America on smart speakers than anywhere else in the world.
  • The biggest adopters of smart speaker technology are affluent educated millenials as well as young gen X and children, according to Global Market Insights.
  • More than 40-percent of adults “used voice search on a daily basis in 2016,” Forbes Magazine reports, noting that comScore predicts that “50 percent of searches will be voice-based by 2020.”
  • Most voice searches according to Forbes are also local. They put an emphasis on the ability of the search engine to deliver up local results.

Voice search poses the natural next step. But we see little direct advertising through voice assistants so far. When users make a voice search, smart speakers usually present only the first organic result. Smartphones may present more results, but still not as many as a manual search. Therefore, brands need to concentrate on SEO to identify the real keywords for digital content marketing in order to produce content that puts them among organic results.

5. Influencers and Digital Content Marketing

The panel had the presence of Yamile Elias, Leonardo Vargas, Giustina Trevisi, and José Camargo

During the last years, the trend of using influencers as a tool to amplify a campaign or digital content marketing message grew to a great extent. Vivian Baron, Founder and Creative Chairwoman of Band of Insiders explained at the Band of Insiders Breakfast at Portada Mexico. “It is no longer about the relationship with the media. It is about how we amplify our client’s message correctly. There’s great interest placed on influencer marketing. There’s also a great lack of knowledge around it.”

In spite of this lack of knowledge, many brands have tried to take advantage of the opportunity that influencer marketing represents. Unfortunately, not everyone succeeds. “Digital platforms are so strong today that influencer marketing can have a hugely negative effect,” Baron said. “It should be taken very seriously.”

Getting it Right

However, it’s very easy to get influencer marketing wrong. After surveying more than 4,000 European respondents about influencer marketing, a report by Bazaarvoice shows consumers are tired of the repetitive nature of the content. They don’t like the decreasing quality of posts. According to the study, 63% of online audiences feel that influencer content has become “too materialistic.” They say it is “misrepresenting real life.” Forty-nine-percent of consumers believe there’s a need for effective regulation. It’s needed to define stricter rules as well as best practices for content.

“When used superficially, the influencer marketing tool can lead to crises as the ones we’ve seen recently,” commented Vivian Baron. “Sometimes there’s a great potential but it doesn’t hold up. It’s very important to design a long-term strategy. It allows you to create a critical mass of loyal followers. This in an industry where loyalty is virtually non-existent.”



6. The Soccer Opportunity

The year 2018 was great for sports. Not only did we have the Winter Olympics in South Korea at the beginning of the year. We saw the most important media opportunity that a sports event can bring: the FIFA World Cup in Russia. No brand in its right mind would miss the digital content marketing opportunities in the tournament. Just after it started, the Chair of Portada’s Sports Marketing Board Joe Favorito prepared an analysis of certain brands using the World Cup to activate their products, such as Kellog’s, SleepScore, and Vivo were his cited examples of brands working closely together with soccer in order to achieve results.

As Jason Howarth, VP of Marketing at Panini, explained in a panel at Portada Los Angeles on May 10, the relevance of the Hispanic market was undeniable from the start. When they found out at Panini that team USA had been disqualified, he “realized we needed to seize all the other opportunities we knew would exist in the U.S.,” he said. “When you go around the country you see all the Messi and Ronaldo jerseys. You quickly realize the U.S. team is probably not the focus of most fans anyway.” He and other marketers knew that the biggest opportunity lay on the Hispanic consumer, who would be rooting for their origin country’s team.

Power of the World Cup

IKarina Dobarro spoke to us just before the tournament started. She is VP, Managing Director, Multicultural Brand Strategy at Horizon Media. “World Cup not only delivers reach and engagement of Hispanic fans. It delivers a level of cultural connection unparalleled to any other sports property. It will be key for brands to determine how to stand out from the crowd. They need to find an authentic way and be creative in finding touchpoints to capture Hispanic fans across devices and time zones.” And with everybody trying to stand out, creativity is really important.

“The lessons learned from World Cup activation and engagement continue to grow,” wrote Favorito after it was over. “The effective implementation of social campaigns tied to the games were in record numbers. Spanish language broadcasts in the U.S. drew solid audiences. That in spite of the fact that the U.S. did not qualify for the event. Many of the elite Spanish language countries exited a little earlier than expected. Still the drama and life displayed by first-timers like Peru and the continued growth and engagement of Mexico led to an even bigger bounce. It was bigger than what was expected. It made World Cup in Russia an overall global success, and not just in soccer, but in sports business.”


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

  • FC Bayern MünchenBayern Munich has reported a record revenue for the 2017/18 financial year. The team made a total of €657.4 million (US$747.9 million), combining both the club’s Bayern Munich AG stock company and the Bayern Munich Group. After taxes, the German champions net income totaled €29.5 million (US$33.6 million). “As well as the sporting success of last season where we won the Bundesliga and reached the latter stages of the Champions League, these results are the evidence that FC Bayern also had a good year on the financial front,” stated Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, chairman of Bayern Munich.


  • Real Madrid locked a deal with China CITIC Bank. As part of the agreement, the two entities will create a China CITIC Bank Real Madrid credit card, which will provide financial services to fans and the chance to win tickets to home games, at the team’s Santiago Bernabeu stadium. The partnership represents the club’s first of its kind in an Asian country.

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!

  • American ExpressParis Saint-Germain renewed its partnership with American Express. The financial services company will continue to offer its concierge service and to operate the hospitality zones of the Ligue 1 outfit’s Parc des Princes stadium. As an additional part of the agreement, American Express Platinum cardholders can purchase tickets at home games, as well as having the opportunity to attend special club events, including the opportunity to meet the team’s star players.


  • Mitel has become Liverpool’s official global unified communications partner, through a multi-year partnership. The English team will work closely with the technology company to enhance their fan experience by implementing cloud-based communication and collaboration solutions, enabling supporters to quickly connect with the club through voice calls and online. “We are always looking for ways to enhance the experience that we provide to our supporters,” stated Billy Hogan, managing director, and chief commercial officer at Liverpool.

Subscribe to Portada daily Sports Marketing Updates!

  • Coca-ColaParis Saint-Germain announced the renewal of its sponsorship deal with Coca-Cola until 2021.  “We are very proud to be one of the historic partners of Paris Saint-Germain and to renew our commitment to the club. Paris Saint-Germain is France’s favorite club and one of the most popular clubs in the world, something we have in common, always very close to our consumers. We love Paris, its prestigious club and its fans, wherever they come from. This partnership is very important for Coca-Cola, and our strategy of uniting, despite our differences,” said Francois Gay Bellile, President of Coca-Cola France.


  • The Houston Dynamo announced a new jersey sponsorship deal with the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. The multi-year agreement will feature cancer-prevention education, community outreach, survivorship celebrations, public service announcements, and philanthropic initiatives. This represents the first season-long cause-related jersey partnership in MLS history.

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

  • NikeNike is ready to sign a new esports deal with the Chinese League of Legends Pro League (LPL). According to Lanxiong Sports, we are looking at a possible five-year partnership worth up to the equivalent of US$144 million. If the partnership happens, Nike would provide clothing, accessories, and shoes for all LPL team players and representatives.


  • The UFC has confirmed its plans to open the world’s largest mixed martial arts (MMA) training facility in Shanghai, in China. The facility is planned to open its doors in 2019 and will have a sport-specific training system to develop and support MMA athletes from across mainland China and the greater Asia-Pacific region. The building will also be designated the UFC’s headquarters in Asia.


  • Nascar is planning on launching its own OTT streaming service. According to SportsBusiness Journal, the service could arrive as soon as 2020. Meanwhile, Fox Sports and NBC Sports are set to air three of Nascar’s national series for an extended six years, through 2024.

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!

  • Manny PacquiaoManny Pacquiao announced being ready to end his two-year absence from boxing to return to Las Vegas to defend his World Boxing Association welterweight world title against former four-division world champion Adrien Broner. The encounter will take place on Jan. 19 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena and be produced and distributed live by SHOWTIME PPV.


  • T-Mobile has locked the naming rights to the Seattle Mariners’ Safeco Field. According to Forbes, some sources reported the deal to be worth up to US$3 million annually. Still, the deal hasn’t been officially announced.

Subscribe to Portada daily Sports Marketing Updates!

  • Estadio AztecaThe NFL and Mexico’s President-Elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador confirmed that 2019 will see Mexico’s Estadio Azteca hosting the third game of the existing agreement signed in 2016. The announcement comes after this year’s game was moved back to the US due to bad field conditions. The details of next year’s game will be established next spring.


  • Mitel has become the title partner of the first two Major League Baseball London Series. The pair of two-game slated to be played at London Stadium will become the first games ever played in Europe. The Boston Red Sox will face the New York Yankees on June 29-30 between. Mitel will act as the league’s Official Business Technology & Communications Partner into all activation, branding, and marketing surrounding the games played in the UK.

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

  • FloSportsFloSports locked a multiyear partnership with the National Basketball League. If approved, the sports stream platform would provide live and on-demand coverage of the NBL exclusively in the U.S. and Canada, and non-exclusively in the UK and Asia via FloHoops.com. The agreement includes all preseason, regular season and postseason games with a total of 127 regular season games per season.


  • FOX Sports and Major League Baseball have signed a new multi-year, multiplatform rights agreement which will allow the network to expand its television, digital and Spanish-language rights for the next decade in a deal reported to be worth $5.1 billion. FOX Sports and FOX Deportes will maintain the television rights to MLB’s jewel events, including serving as the exclusive television broadcast partner of the World Series, one League Championship Series, two Division Series, and the All-Star Game.


  • After defining the playing surface at the Estadio Azteca in Mexico as unsafe, the LA Rams and the Kansas City Chiefs decided to move the International Series game, which was planned to be played in Mexico City on Monday 19th November, to Los Angeles

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.

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

  • McDonald'sDAZN is entering the Brazilian and Latin-American market after securing media rights for two major European soccer leagues. According to SportBusiness, the OTT platform is trying to get the rights to Italy’s Serie A and France’s Ligue 1 in both regions, which are currently owned by IMG and BeIN Media Group respectively.


  • McDonald’s Germany is moving out of soccer and focusing on esports by ending its partnership with the German Football Association and building upon its relationship with esports brand ESL. McDonald’s first partnered with ESL in January to sponsor the national esports championship in Germany, the ESL Meisterschaft.

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.

  • Boxeo TelemundoBoxeo Telemundo is coming back to Telemundo Deportes on Nov. 16. The season premiere will feature Puerto Rican Jonathan “Bomba” Gonzalez and Mexican Juan “Pinky” Alejo battling for the WBO/NABO flyweight title. Rene Giraldo and Edgar Lopez will act as commentators alongside Abner Mares.


  • MLB owners are looking at a new television contract possibility with FOX Sports as well as a bespoke agreement with the OTT streaming service DAZN. The DAZN deal would see the platform negotiating a $300 million, three-year deal with MLB for in-game cut-ins.

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

  • Combate AmericasCombate Americas will broadcast its second annual Copa Combate one-night MMA tournament on streaming platform DAZN, along with Univision and UDN. The event will feature eight fighters, from eight different countries, battling it out for a $100,000 grand prize, at Save Mart Center in Fresno on Dec. 7.


  • In 2019 four NFL regular season games will be played in London, adding one more week to the three that are being played there this year. Two games will be played at Wembley, and two more at Tottenham Hotspur’s new stadium.

Subscribe to Portada daily Sports Marketing Updates!

  • WalmartEsports Arena and Walmart have locked a deal to expand the esports facility operator’s reach to five new locations, around Roseville, California; Spokane Valley, Washington; and Colorado Springs. Each location will hold league nights during weekdays and tournaments on weekends. In addition, Walmart.com will become the exclusive online retailer for Esports Arena’s new OVERPOWERED line of gaming PCs. According to hispanicgamers.com Hispanic gamers buy and rent video games more often than Non-Hispanics.


  • The Raider’s future stadium in Las Vegas has signed its first founding partnership with gaming firm Caesars Entertainment in a15-year agreement. Caesars also holds sponsorship deals with the National Basketball Association’s (NBA) Philadelphia 76ers and the National Hockey League’s (NHL) New Jersey Devils.

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

  •  https://pbs.twimg.com/profile_images/1027403255607746560/dIyhrGOz_400x400.jpgESPN will launch a year-long, multi-platform storytelling experience in 2019 to celebrate the 150th anniversary of college football. The platform will include two weekly documentary series, The American Game, which will hit the screen on Tuesdays starting Sept. 17, 2019.


  • American sports brand New Balanced locked a multi-year endorsement contract with 14-year-old tennis star Cori “CoCo” Gauff. Just one year ago, Gauff became the youngest girl to make a U.S. Open girls final. In 2018 Gauff became the fifth-youngest winner of the French Open girls’ tournament in June 2018.

Subscribe to Portada daily Sports Marketing Updates!

  • NikeNike signed an endorsement deal with Chinese League of Legends player Jian ‘Uzi’ Zihao. This represents the brand’s first-ever partnership with an esports athlete. Zihao will now star alongside NBA player LeBron James and Chinese actor Bai Jingting to promote the former’s ‘Dribble &’ marketing campaign.


  • Check out the top 5 most valuable esports companies according to Forbes. According to the business outlet, the list was created after “talking to company owners, bankers, and industry experts,” noting that numbers were “applied during each company’s most recent capital raise, comparable esports transactions, and their prospects.” On average, 2014 Think Now Research shows that Hispanics play video games more often than Non-Hispanics (12 hours per week vs. 9 hours for Non-Hispanics).Check out the ranking:
  1. Cloud9 — $310 million
  2. Team SoloMid — $250 million
  3. Team Liquid — $200 million
  4. Echo Fox — $150 million
  5. OpTic Gaming — $130 million

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

  • Doosan Equipment EUDoosan will be the presenting sponsor of the 2018 National League Division Series (NLDS). This is the brand’s second year MLB Postseason involvement, after sponsoring the American League Division Series (ALDS) last year. The brand will receive significant exposure across national broadcast and MLB-owned channels along with in-stadium brand integration throughout the series. “We are honored to be an official partner of MLB. Our partnership is nearly a year old, and we’ve seen those efforts help to build additional brand awareness and business opportunities for Doosan in the U.S.,” said Edward Song, Head of Doosan Infracore North America.


  • The NFL might be canceling its Sunday Ticket deal with AT&T-owned DirecTV. According to Pro Football Talk, the league is willing to cancel the US$1.5 billion extension deal it signed with the out-of-market broadcast provider back in 2014 to take the contract through 2022. The league has the power to cancel the arrangement as early as the conclusion of the 2019 regular season. NFL viewership among Hispanics has increased by 28% in the past five years alone, according to a 2016 Nielsen report.


  • The Phoenix Suns signed a jersey patch deal with PayPal. With this agreement, PayPal becomes the official payment partner of the Suns, the WNBA Phoenix Mercury and Real Club Deportivo Mallorca, a second-division Spanish soccer team controlled by Suns Owner Robert Sarver. In addition, the Suns will make PayPal Credit available for season-ticket purchases. 31% of MLB players are Latino, according to ESPN.

Subscribe to Portada daily Sports Marketing Updates!

  • San Francisco 49ersTechnology company Copia is pushing its partnership with the San Francisco 49ers by helping reduce food waste at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, by delivering excess food to non-profit organizations and shelters. The technology company has redistributed over 26,000 pounds worth of quality food to the local community.


  • NASCAR presented a new augmented reality experience available via the NASCAR Mobile app, for fans to experience the 2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs. Fans will be able to walk through virtual portals to experience the Playoffs’ most memorable moments in 360-degree AR. According to 2011 data, 20% of NASCAR’s followers are multicultural fans, 9% were Hispanic and 8% African-American.


  • Mediapro is preparing to launch a Spanish-speaking OTT streaming service dedicated to esports. Similar to Twitch the new platform is expected to go live before the end of this year. The channel will house live competitive gaming events and tournaments, along with a host of exclusive in-house content. According to hispanicgamers.com Hispanics expressed more interest in watching others play video games compared to Non-Hispanics.

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

  • Matchroom BoxingDAZN a new eight-year deal with sports events promotion company Matchroom Boxing to broadcast 16 live fight nights. The programming will be exclusively available to DAZN users in Canada. The first fight to be streamed as part of the deal will be the Jessie Vargas v. Thomas Dulorme bout on Oct. 6 in Chicago.


  • The Houston Rockets has named AntPool, a Chinese bitcoin company, as the official sponsor for the 2018/19 season. AntPool claims to be the second-largest bitcoin mining operation in the world and is a subsidiary of Beijing-based Bitmain Technologies.


  • UFC has announced a new multi-year licensing agreement with jeweler brand Bixler. The partnership gives Bixler the rights to manufacture and distribute UFC and MMA athlete-inspired jewelry in the United States and Canada, as well as globally via UFC Store.com. According to a Washington Post poll, 38% of mixed martial arts fans are African-American, and 31% are Hispanics.

Subscribe to Portada daily Sports Marketing Updates!

  • ABB Formula EFormula E has announced a five-year extension of its broadcast partnership with Mediaset. The agreement will see the Italian free-to-air broadcaster continue to show coverage of the global electric racing series through to season nine. “The results Mediaset has shown – along with their extensive programming of the ABB FIA Formula E Championship – is a testament to their ongoing commitment and we look forward to bringing all the action live to fans across Italy for a further five seasons,” stated Ali Russell, media and business development officer at Formula E.


  • Headphones brand AfterShokz has signed NASCAR drivers Bubba Wallace and Chase Elliott as endorsers in a deal that includes social media promotions and personal appearances. According to 2011 data, 20% of NASCAR’s followers are multicultural fans, 9% were Hispanic and 8% African-American.


  • The MLB Players Association announced a partnership with UMG Media Corp. to launch the first-ever esports series of competitions for Major League Baseball players. Both active and retired players will compete against each other in esports play. According to hispanicgamers.com Hispanics expressed more interest in watching others play video games compared to Non-Hispanics.

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

  • https://pbs.twimg.com/profile_images/1022907060948627456/FN6y9l8B_400x400.jpgUS Open ladies’ champion Naomi Osaka is set to sign Adidas’ biggest clothing deal with a female athlete. According to The Times, the deal is worth an estimated $8.5 million annually.


  • The MLB will continue to commemorate Hispanic Heritage Month with a slate of events and efforts designed to spotlight the contributions to baseball by Hispanic and Latino players throughout the month of September. Initiatives include special MLB Network vignettes highlighting Latino stars, social and digital content across MLB’s bilingual platforms, and in-park Club celebrations around the league. MLB also presented new media platforms designed to provide real-time, quality content to the Spanish-speaking Hispanic and Latino audience.

Subscribe to Portada daily Sports Marketing Updates!

  • Baloncesto Suprerior NacionalPuerto Rico’s premiere professional basketball league, locked a partnership with WSC Sports, the leader in AI powered sports video content, for automated creation and distribution of video highlights. WSC’s machine learning technology enables BSN to automatically create video highlights and share them across digital and social platforms. This is a small way for WSC to give back to Puerto Rico, following the devastation of Hurricane Maria in 2017.


  • DoritosTwitchCon 2018 will see Doritos in the trenches, with the announcement of the Doritos Bowl on Oct. 27 in San Jose. The event will have top gamers competing in Call of Duty: Black Ops 4’s new battle royale mode, Blackout, anchored by Ninja, Shroud, CouRage, and DrLupo. On average, Hispanics play video games more often than Non-Hispanics (12 hours per week vs. 9 hours for Non-Hispanics), according to a 2014 Think Now Research study.


  • JBL is expanding its presence among NBA players and teams. In addition to welcoming back champion Stephen Curry, NBA All Star Andre Drummond and Kristaps Porzingis, JBL is adding Giannis Antetokounmpo as an ambassador. The brand also announced a partnerships with the Chicago Bulls and Miami Heat starting during the 2018-2019 season.

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

  • NBA MÉXICOThe NBA Mexico City Games 2018 will feature the Orlando Magic playing regular-season games against the Chicago Bulls on Dec. 13, and against the Utah Jazz on Dec. 15 at the Arena Ciudad de Mexico in Mexico City. This will be the third consecutive season the NBA plays two regular-season games in Mexico City, with coverage on ESPN. The NBA Mexico City Games 2018 will be supported by a full roster of marketing partners, including Nike, SAP, Gatorade and Tissot with additional partners to be announced in the coming months.


  • United Entertainment Group is launching its first-ever offering in Asia where industry veteran Toru Fumihara has been hired as the Managing Director of UEG’s new office in Tokyo, which will serve as a hub for the Asian marketplace. This marks the third international office the agency has opened in the span of one year, starting with London in 2017 and Hamburg, Germany earlier in 2018.


  • As the official beer of the NFL, Bud Light is introducing new designs for cans that feature a team logo, as well as a customized color stripe down the side. In total, each of Bud Light’s 28 team partners will be featured in the new designs, along with an NFL Shield edition to round out the collection. The new cans hit shelves this week.

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  • David Higdon
    David Higdon, head of communications, esports at Riot Games.

    Former NASCAR executive David Higdon has a new lane to oversee, joining Riot Games in the newly created position of global head of communications, esports. Higdon previously served as VP of integrated marketing communications for NASCAR and as CCO for the LPGA.


  • DAZN announced the sublicensing deals for its NFL coverage in Canada after experiencing streaming issues last season. Streaming and satellite providers including BCE Inc., Rogers Communications, Shaw Communications and SaskTel will distribute NFL Sunday Ticket for the upcoming season.


  • The NFL won’t be playing in London’s new Tottenham Hotspur stadium as it was planned. Developers announced delays in opening the venue due to safety concerns so this year’s NFL game that was set for the location will now take place at Wembley Stadium on Oct. 14. The game will feature the Seahawks vs Raiders.

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

  • ESPN is bringing back ESPN8. “The Ocho” will take the place of ESPN2 on Aug. 8, offering 24 hours of off-beat programming. KFC will sponsor all 24 hours of programming in a series of vignettes that will run throughout the day. Within the lineup will be the 2018 Dodgeball World Cup, the US Open Ultimate Championships, the Spikeball East Tour Series, Major League Eating, the Cornhole: ACL Pro Invitational, and the World Championship of Ping Pong.


  • Van HeusenVan Heusen has become UFC’s first-ever “Official Men’s Dress Furnishings Provider,” with UFC bantamweight champion TJ Dillashaw and UFC welterweight contender Stephen Thompson starring in a new commercial highlighting the Van Heusen Flex collection of men’s shirts and pants. The commercial and campaign creative will be placed across national and local cable television, and display ads on select retailer sites. According to a Washington Post poll, 38% of mixed martial arts fans are African-American, and 31% are Hispanics.


  • OTT DAZN is planning on creating original lifestyle content including documentaries, talk shows and podcasts as part of its international expansion. “In a market like the US where we’re very strong in combat sports rights but don’t have much else, we need original content,” said DAZN chief executive James Rushton, to Digiday. “Part of our challenge is, we have to turn these boxers back into superstars.” The platform is set to launch in September with only boxing and martial arts rights and will be supplementing that coverage with an original daily news show offering an inside look at what fighters get up to outside the ring.

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  • Top Rank BoxingBoxing promotion company Top Rank signed a new seven-year partnership with ESPN. As part of the deal, ESPN will provide live coverage of 54 boxing events per year, as well as delivering previews and post-fight analysis programmes, archive and studio content and new shows.


  • UFC confirmed its first-ever event in Beijing, China, taking place at the Cadillac Arena on Nov. 24. “China is the next frontier for the growth of UFC and the sport of mixed martial arts, and this market is paramount to our success internationally,” UFC Vice President of Asia-Pacific Kevin Chang said. UFC will be working together with Endeavor China to deliver the live event.


  • Clemson University locked in a 10-year contract extension with Nike, that will run through the 2027-28 academic year and grant the athletic department more than $58 million in apparel allowances, direct cash payouts, and royalties. “Nike is one of the premier brands in the world and we’re excited to build upon our relationship,” said Dan Radakovich, Director of Athletics, Clemson University.

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  • FedExFedEx expanded its partnership with the NBA’s Memphis Grizzlies to become the franchise’s first-ever jersey sponsor. The FedEx logo will be integrated into the team’s newly designed Nike uniforms for the 2018/19 season.


  • Major League Baseball and ESPN announced that the 2018 MLB Postseason will begin exclusively on ESPN on Oct. 2. The National League Wild Card Game presented by Hankook will also be available on ESPN Radio, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Deportes Radio and the ESPN App. 31% of MLB players are Latino, according to ESPN.


  • UFC signed a multi-year marketing partnership with meal delivery service Trifecta Nutrition. The agreement represents a brand-new sponsorship category for UFC. In return, Trifecta will have a branded presence at the UFC Performance Institute and an activation presence at UFC’s live events. Trifecta will use UFC branding to create custom delivery boxes and to promote national sweepstakes for UFC events.

What: We looked at Comscore data of the most-visited Sports sites in Latin America, and particularly in Mexico, in June 2018.
Why it matters: Latin Americans are very interested in sports; the websites they choose to consume content shed light on what interests them the most. Since the first half of the FIFA World Cup took place in June, there have been interesting developments in the latest rankings.

Ever since the start of the year, we knew the World Cup months would bring interesting results, particularly to Latin American audiences. Sports websites that are informative and comprehensive are always at a clear advantage, but we see interesting changes to the rankings in June. With the start of the soccer tournament, there was an important increase in viewership of sports sites such as FIFA.COM and the Televisa Deportes website, which proves that, as much of the marketing around the World Cup suggested, soccer does unite audiences.

Top 10 Sports Sites in Latin America, June 2018

Total Audience, Home and Work, PC/Laptop.Total Unique Visitors (000)
Total Internet: Total Audience181,593
1Globo Esportes15,549
2MSN Sports12,422
3UOL Esporte7,117
4AS.com Sites6,357
6Marca Sites4,767
9Televisa Deportes (Site)3,765
    [Source: comScore]
  • From the total amount of Latin Americans with an internet connection, 37% consumed sports content online in June; almost 9% more than the previous month.
  • Those users chose a variety of sites to find the content they were looking for, but Brazilian website Globo Esportes stayed on top with 23%, almost 2% more than the previous month.
  • MSN Sports was visited by 18.4% of Latin Americans looking for sports content online, about 5% more than in previous rankings.
  • UOL Esporte was trying to catch up with 10.5% of visits.
  • 9.4% of sports content users visited AS.com sites, a full 2% more than the previous month.
  • For the first time in the ranking, FIFA.COM was seen by 8.9% of viewers.
  • Marca Sites was seen by 7% of sports content users; very similarly, Desafio Mundial received 6.7% of visits.
  • 6.5% of users preferred to find sports content on ESPN. 
  • Televisa Deportes, the number one Mexican site, was seen by 5.5% of viewers.
  • 5.4% of viewers visited DEPOR.COM.

Top 10 Sports Sites in Mexico, June 2018

Total Audience, Home and Work, PC/Laptop, Mobile.Total Unique Visitors (000)
Total Internet: Total Audience65,915
1Televisa Deportes (Site)11,804
2Marca Sites7,535
3AS.com Sites6,161
8MSN Sports3,115
    [Source: comScore]
  • 52% of Mexicans with an internet connection consumed sports content online in June, almost 20% more than the previous month.
  • Televisa Deportes was the real World Cup winner, with 34% of visits.
  • Marca Sites was visited by 21% of viewers.
  • 17.8% of users visited AS.com to find sports content.
  • Medio Tiempo received 15.6% of visits.
  • 13.3% of users searched for sports content on ESPN. 
  • AZTECA DEPORTES enters the ranking with 12.9%.
  • 9.7% of sports content users visited Record.
  • MSN Sports received 9% of visits.
  • For the first time in the ranking, FIFA.COM was seen by 8.6% of users.
  • 8.4% of users went to DEPOR.COM.

What: LaLiga has formed a new partnership to promote soccer development in Malaysia
Why it matters: This deal is mutually beneficial in that LaLiga can expand its reach while Malaysian football can learn from Spain’s success.

Malaysia Matches Up with LaLiga

LaLiga, the association in charge of Spanish soccer’s top division, has stuck a partnership with Football Malaysia Limited Liability Partnership (FMLLP) to create a 50-year plan to grow the sport in this robust Asian nation. Over the three years of the deal, LaLiga will advise the FMLLP, Malaysia’s privatized footballing association, on various ways to create a healthy infrastructure in which football can flourish. For example, LaLiga will help Malaysian clubs get their finances in order, improve social outreach, expand marketing initiatives, and improve day-to-day operations such as security. As FMLLP chairman and Football Association of Malaysia president Tunku Ismail indicated after the signing ceremony, the goal is to put in place a plan that draws upon the experience of a top league like LaLiga and sets guidelines for Malaysian football for subsequent federation heads to follow. Utilizing a proven league as a consulting service seems like a logical step forward for this budding footballing nation, and it would not be surprising to see other countries collaborate in the same manner.

These initiatives show how LaLiga is off to a great start in terms of exploring new markets with growing soccer awareness and economic promise.

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LaLiga Looking Abroad

For LaLiga, this deal marks a further step in the league’s mission to expand its reach across the globe. Prior to the Malaysia deal, LaLiga struck a similar agreement with Japan’s J-League to exchange information and help each other grow. In addition to pooling together ideas on best practices, it is clear that another principal goal of LaLiga with these moves is to increase brand exposure in new markets. LaLiga president Javier Tebas recognized the value in working with local football officials to reach new markets when he lauded LaLiga’s new ability to understand the Malaysian market as a result of the partnership. Though LaLiga is attempting to tap into passion for soccer in East Asia, its sights are set far beyond just this part of the globe: the league has an office up and running in the United States and has expressed a clear goal of increasing its influence in India. These initiatives show how LaLiga is off to a great start in terms of exploring new markets with growing soccer awareness and economic promise.

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A summary of the most exciting recent news in multicultural sports marketing in the U.S., U.S.-Hispanic and Latin American markets. If you’re trying to keep up, consider this your one-stop shop.

Image result for corona extraConstellation Brands reported strong performance of its beer portfolio with net sales increasing 7.8% in Q3 2018 as its Mexican import brands have claimed four of the top share gainer positions in the total US beer category. Modelo Especial, Corona, Modelo Chelada Picante Tamarindo, and Pacifico have had the best results. Part of it due to the brand’s sports marketing deals. Corona Extra is the official imported beer sponsor of four US National Football League Teams, and Modelo Especial showed the Fighting Spirit campaign on TV plus promotional activities during the NFL schedule.

OTT VIVA Entertainment Group, which broadcasts content for Latinos, including sports, announced it finished debugging the Flixfling media library interface and conducted beta testing. The company expects that this content, which includes over 15,000 movies and live television streaming, will be available on Viva Live as soon as next week. Viva is also launching a DVR feature for Viva Live TV, targeted to be up and running the first week of February.

PepsiCo signed with former NFL stars Greg Jennings, Nick Mangold, and Rashad Jennings for its Game Day Grub Match. Vox Creative launched the promotion and it features the three players challenged to prepare game day dishes using PepsiCo food and beverage products as ingredients. All three episodes are now on YouTube.

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Serbian tennis player Novak Djokovic signed a global footwear deal with Asics, ending his association with Adidas.

Dan Lovinger, NBCU Exec VP/Sales & Marketing, said that the channel expects to take in $500M in ad revenue on Super Bowl Sunday. This is a similar amount to what it earned last year.

Image result for Shaquille O'Neal Carnival Cruise LineShaquille O’Neal has become Carnival Cruise Line brand ambassador in its new “Choose Fun” advertising campaign as CFO (chief fun officer).

Snickers is about to sign a deal to become the “official chocolate” of FlyQuest, an esports organization that fields teams in the League of Legends Championship Series and Rocket League. This will be Snickers’ first team-level deal in esports.

Yahoo Sports started streaming NFL playoff games during the past weekend as part of the company’s new streaming deal with Verizon. The first game streamed on mobile via the Yahoo Sports app was the Falcons/Eagles, on Saturday.

NASCAR has given Monster Energy an extension to decide whether it wants to remain the Cup series sponsor or not. The two companies are in the midst of a two-year deal with a two-year option. Monster’s deadline to determine the extension of the partnership was Dec. 31.




Which sports video platforms do US Hispanic users prefer? What types of sports do they prefer? Do they prefer league sites o news media sites? Read on for the answers to these questions, drawn from comScore’s May 2017 ranking.

Although sports sites are making a major effort to generate video content and are increasingly including live broadcasts across their digital platforms, content consumption by U.S. Hispanics still remains low. Only 14.7% of all Hispanic netizens view sports video content. Just in the last month, we saw an almost 1% drop, for a total of 3.9 million users.

Source: comScore Video Metrix , U.S., Hispanic All, Home and Work, PC/Laptop Only, May 2017, 6+Total Unique Viewers (000)
   Total Internet: Hispanic All26,624
1   Fox Sports-SI Group-Perform Media1,265
2   ESPN846
3   Yahoo Sports-NBC Sports Network669
4   MLB558
5   MSN Sports510
6   Marca Sites501
7   SendtoNews445
8   Whistle Sports396
9   CBS Sports376
10   NFL Internet Group298

Although Yahoo Sports ranked 7th on our list of sports sites most visited by Hispanics, it is doing even better in sports video content consumption, coming in 3rd in our ranking of Top 10 sports video platforms.

Spanish language soccer site Marca also makes its debut in our list this month, ranking 6th, with 501,000 unique users. What we don’t know is whether Hispanics are consuming videos in Spanish or English, since the site offers both options. In the overall rankings, Hispanics tend to choose to consume sports content in English.

In addition to the presence of sports news sites, there are two leagues that managed to attract sports video consumers directly to their official sites: the NFL and MLB. Coming in 4th is the MLB, with 558,000 unique users, while the NFL ranked 10th with 298,000 video consumers.

What: We talked with FuboTV co-founder Alberto Horihuela about how the sports streaming platform was created and its expansion plans.
Why it matters: A few days ago, FuboTV announced it had obtained an additional US $55 million in financing, for a total of US $75.6 million raised to date.

Alberto Horihuela
Alberto Horihuela, co-founder and CMO at FuboTV.

Sports streaming platform FuboTV was born as a start-up in its purest form, said company co-founder AND CMO Alberto Horihuela. “We launched FuboTV out of the living room of my apartment, where we spent the first six months building the initial prototype for the product.”

Horihuela confesses that when his partners David Gandler and Sung Ho Choi proposed the idea of creating a sports streaming platform to be financed through subscriptions and ad sales, he wasn’t very convinced. “I personally thought it was a terrible idea, considering my early assumptions about rights, streaming piracy and so on, but the data quickly proved me wrong.”

I personally thought it was a terrible idea, but the data quickly proved me wrong.

In fact, everything suggests that the numbers did not lie. Now, three years after its founding, FuboTV has managed to raise US $55 million in financing, led by venture capital firm Northzone, along with investors 21st Century Fox, Sky, and Scripps Networks Interactive. Just a year ago, the startup had already raised an additional US $15 million in financing.

As with all business ventures, the founders went through an adjustment phase before becoming the platform they are today. “FuboTV started as a provider of on-demand soccer programming—we were looking to provide users with everything there was to watch about their teams, from full matches to behind-the-scenes footage and documentaries. However, the interest in live access could not be ignored, and the focus shifted to providing that service.”

The interest in live access could not be ignored, and the focus shifted to providing that service.

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This is the room where it all started.

Although the subscription platform includes varied content such as news and entertainment channels, its initial idea of providing fan-focused sports content remains intact. FuboTV faces the challenge of an audience divided into two large segments; an older audience that needs to change the way it consumes content, and a young audience that does not know anything other than digital.

“It’s a two-way street. If you look at older audience cohorts, device and service adoption is changing the way they consume content, in the way the platforms are changing that audience’s behavior. But for younger cohorts, new platforms are the only ways they know how to consume content—this movement is driving the evolution of the entire ecosystem,” he noted.


Business relationships

Before forming FuboTV, Gandler spent half of his career in advertising sales. Armed with a sales team and the experience of co-founder and CFO Joel Armijo (previously with DIRECTV and AT&T AdWorks), the start-up has managed to attract a good client portfolio.

Ninety percent of FuboTV’s marketing efforts are centered on digital marketing, with a focus on in-house production. “All of our marketing is done in-house: creative development, media planning, campaign execution, optimization, and analytics. We rarely work with external agencies,” said Horihuela.

All of our marketing is done in-house. We rarely work with external agencies.

The remaining 10% is spent on offline efforts. “We’ve dipped our toes into TV, radio, print, and direct mail—all great for scale, but generally less targeted. And we supplement this with social media and public relations activities,” he added.

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Looking ahead

fuboTV“I think live streaming is one category that has yet to see the level of digital disruption and innovation fans desire; the mere volume of live sport piracy is a testament to that. We are offering a service to address a clear need: a reliable and affordable way for fans to watch the teams they love, live from anywhere they are”, says the entrepreneur.

To that end, the recent round of financing will be used for content acquisition, expanding the product and engineering team, and investing in marketing.

As part of its expansion plans, FuboTV announced recently that it has come to an agreement to add networks from CBS Corporation to its line-up.

This includes CBS and The CW broadcast networks, as well as CBS Sports Network, Pop and CBSN all being added to the entry-level “Fubo Premier” bundle, and SHOWTIME East and West to be made available as a premium add-on.

FuboTV is currently available in Canada and the United States. Although no details on expansion plans were given, Horihuela said “we are always looking for opportunities to further strengthen the offer for our subscribers, and we are speaking with every major player in the market.”

We are always looking for opportunities to further strengthen the offer for our subscribers, and we are speaking with every major player in the market.

What: The company launched a live TV beta service to the public with 50 different live and on demand channels, at a price of $39.99 per month.
Why it matters: Hulu becomes one of the few pay-TV services, another one being SlingTV,  that offers live and on demand channels, original series and films, and a library of premium streaming TV shows and movies, all in one place. This includes content from the four major sports broadcast networks, ABC, CBS, FOX, and NBC.

Since yesterday, may 3rd, viewers who subscribe to the Hulu Live TV (Beta) plan can enjoy live and on-demand programming from more than 50 popular sports, news, entertainment and kids’ channels, in addition to Hulu’s premium streaming library, all for $39.99 per month.

“Nearly a decade ago, Hulu forever redefined the way people watch TV. Today, as we add live sports, news, and entertainment and introduce a more intuitive Hulu, we want to redefine the way people experience TV,” said Hulu CEO Mike Hopkins in a statement. “By bringing together thousands of live, on-demand and library shows and movies — and serving them up in a uniquely personalized way – Hulu can now be a viewer’s primary source of television. It’s a natural extension of our business and an exciting new chapter for Hulu.”

Today, as we add live sports, news, and entertainment and introduce a more intuitive Hulu, we want to redefine the way people experience TV.

Content from the four major broadcast networks, ABC, CBS, FOX, and NBC, will now be available. Users will be able to watch and record the biggest live sporting events from top pro and college leagues on channels including CBS Sports, ESPN, Fox Sports, NBC Sports and TNT, as well as regional sports networks available in many markets.

The offer includes 50 hours of recording storage, up to six individual profiles and two simultaneous streams per account, with options to upgrade to an enhanced Cloud DVR and unlimited in-home screens, and is available on Apple TV, Xbox One, iOS and Android Mobile Devices, and Chromecast.

What: Ed Carias, Sr. Brand Manager at el Jimador Tequila – North American Region, Brown-Forman, and a speaker at our upcoming PortadaLat conference next month speaks to Portada about what he has learned about strategizing and activating sport sponsorships and sports related ad campaigns. 
Why it matters:
 Sports marketing, particularly as it relates to sponsorships is an area that is strongly growing in the overall U.S. marketing landscape.

Sports background Free VectorWhen you build a sports marketing strategy for your brand, it is very important to first understand what you are trying to accomplish if you want your investment to be successful, explains Ed Carias, Sr. Brand Manager at el Jimador Tequila – North American Region, Brown-Forman.

“To sponsor a sports team or a particular player (celebrity)  may not necessarily  be the right choice. The decision to sponsor a particular property has to be aligned with the brands overall goals,” Carias adds.

The decision to sponsor a particular property has to be aligned with the brands overall goals.

According to Carias,  Sports marketing has become a widely used and accepted piece of the marketer’s toolbox,”  “Of course,  this doesn’t mean that because the opportunity is there you have to grab it. The sponsorship needs to make sense within the overall sports marketing framework. If a sports property can help you advance your overall brand or business goals then it becomes a really good opportunity and conversation, whether you are looking for awareness, or to make a connection with your target consumer.”

Choosing the Right Sport

Another challenge is to choose the right sport, Carias notes. There are so many sports to choose from, that you have to focus on the one that suits your brand best. A great example is what companies like Red Bull and Monster Energy have done through their association with extreme sports. “Once you decide that a sports partnership can help your overall business goals,” says Carias, “you have to take a look at what you want to accomplish with that, and at what resources you have available in order to  leverage  the sponsorship.”

Carias, a  member of Portada’s Sports Marketing Board,  notes that throughout his career he has had experiences with partnerships where he has not been able to fully leverage the rights or the name of the team. “We didn’t activate the partnership as well as we could have. That was a big learning for me,” he explains.

If you don’t have a plan that fully leverages the sports partnership then maybe you are better off doing advertisement around the sport.”

Through learning by doing it became clear to Carias that “if you don’t have a plan that fully leverages the sports partnership then you might be better off  doing advertisement around the sport.”

To know what works best in advance, you have to look at your overall plan and at the resources you have available, and then make a decision. Also, you might have a great marketing plan around a team sponsorship, but if you don’t have the money to invest in activities around the sponsorship,  you might be better off doing  something else.”

Carias has the following rule in order to make sure that a brand has the right level of resources to fund sports marketing efforts: “You need two dollars for every dollar invested in  a sponsorship in order to be able to fully leverage it.”

You need two dollars for every dollar associated with a sponsorship in order to be able to fully leverage it.

Major League SoccerSoccer Marketing…

“In the last ten years, soccer in the U.S. has continued to grow and to get bigger. The difference between  soccer and hockey is very small. They have almost the same popularity right now.” Carias believes.

“I don’t think soccer is approached  just as a way to target multicultural or Hispanic consumers anymore,” Carias emphasizes. In the last decade brands and fans have experienced that in addition to large metropolitan marketers, there is growth in smaller markets. MLS teams such as Seattle and Portland have shown that general market fans are as interested in soccer, “or maybe more interested in soccer,” than they are in other sports.

But soccer brands need to be careful when planning a sponsorship. There are many ways to advertise around soccer, you don’t need a partnership or a main sponsorship. “Billboard advertising as well as  stadium signage and other smaller sponsorship elements are also available.”

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What brands should be really looking for, is for customizable content that only they can provide to sports fans. The truth is, “soccer fans don’t need our brands to be fans, they already are, and they can find information about their team in one thousand different locations,” explains Carias.

Soccer fans don’t need our brands to be fans, they already are.

The key is to come up with content that really engages a brand’s target audience to interact with the brand. “That’s pushing us to do more custom content, and things that are unique.” For example, EL Jimador did a program with Tim Howard, the goalkeeper of the Colorado Rapids and the United States national team. The program  provided consumers a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to shoot a penalty kick against Howard and potentially win one million dollars.”

“More brands are getting into these  kinds of unique partnerships and custom opportunities versus just having our name on the shirt, or making posters with the team logo for display.”

Carias believes that brands have gotten smarter and savvier on what it takes to leverage sports properties. But part of the challenge is that fans are smarter too. “We have to be more and more creative on how we provide value to the fandom.”

A brand that did a great job, according to Carias, is Heineken and their official sponsorship of MLS rivalry week. “It is a great idea because the rivalry is what fans really get excited about.” Heineken found the way to connect with fans with something that they already want. “They want to celebrate their team and show how their team is better than yours.” (Heineken became the MLS’s official beer starting January 2015. The Dutch brand replaced 20-year associate Budweiser, with a $50 million five-year deal.)

el Jimador Tequila…and why El Jimador Chose Soccer: Celebrations

The place where El Jimador fits into soccer is when a celebrations takes place. That is a natural connection where soccer and sports fans are comfortable engaging with an alcohol partner.

Celebrations are natural connections where soccer fans are comfortable engaging with an alcoholic brand.

Soccer for us feels like the right platform for the strategy that we are carrying out today in the US and in Canada,  because we are trying to connect with a multicultural audience. As a platform soccer allows us to speak to a Hispanic audience and the general market in the U.S. It is a very flexible platform.

Carias notes that soccer is one of the most alcohol friendly sports, “as it is a sport you watch together with friends at a bar, or with a drink in your hand.”

Soccer fans are very smart about their fandom, so you have to be as committed to the sport as they are.

El Jimador’s biggest challenge, Carias concludes, is to understand the sport and the fans. “We have seen over the last few years that soccer fans are very smart around their fandom, so you have to be as committed to the sport as they are.”

PortadaLat Registration: We have added new Ticket Types to Meet Your Needs!

DAY 1: SPORTS AND TRAVEL MARKETING DAY (June 7):  The first day of PortadaLat will focus on how technological innovation is impacting key segments of business and marketing with emphasis on Travel and Sports. All sessions, keynotes and marketing-tech showcases are included as well as light food, sandwiches and beverages. (US $199)
GENERAL PASS: Attend the overall PortadaLat event on June 7 and June 8. All sessions, keynotes, networking, food and beverage included! (US$549)
VIP ATTENDEE: Meet up to 5 high-level brand, agency or media executives of your choice attending or speaking PortadaLat. These 10 minute meetings will take place in a separate room during the first and second day of PortadaLat and are designed to help you build valuable relationships. General Pass offering is included. (US $ 1,999).
The second day at PortadaLat will celebrate Brand Innovation and showcase how leading companies are boosting brand equity and increasing their relevance in a disruptive environment in Latin America and the U.S. Breakfast, Lunch and Evening Reception Food and Beverages included. (US$ 549!)
Secure your spot and start the PortadaLat journey!

Check out last weekend’s top 25 live sports ratings! Here is a quick look at the live sports programming people watched the most

Which sport drew the biggest audience?

The start of the NBA playoffs made a strong mark on last weekend’s ratings as Basketball was the most watched sport nationwide. The encounter between Oklahoma City vs Houston Rockets was the most watched match, attracting more than five million viewers.

What broadcaster drew the biggest audience?

Turner Network was the most-watched broadcaster. More than 10 million people saw the Oklahoma vs Houston and Chicago vs Boston games.
The second most watched channel was ESPN, which also broadcast some NBA Playoffs.

What else is relevant?

The encounter between MLB teams Yankees vs Cardinals was the most watched non-basketball related game. The game attracted 1.8 million viewers.

Nominate your candidates! Call for Entries: 2018 Golazo International Soccer Award!

ProgramEpisodeNetworkStartEndTotal Viewers (000)Viewers Age 18-49 (000)Day of the game
17F1 RACING LBAHRAINCNBC10:30 AM12:47 PM413143Sun

Source: SportsTVRatings.com (“All data ©Nielsen, provided by a variety of TV network sources and not directly from Nielsen”)

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