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Rugby League told to play to its strengths ... but World Cup still waiting for sponsors


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#21 foozler

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 02:27 PM

We have employed all sorts of people from outside of the game yet our fortunes don't change massively.

 

People can talk all they want about customer profiles etc. but there is more to sport sponsorship than this. Prestige is a hard to measure thing.

 

Our Commercial Manager previously worked with Man City IIRC and was involved in major deals with the likes of Etihad - why isn't he just finding it easy to go out and get sponsors in?

 

IMG are selling the rights to the WC - again, whay aren't the broadcasters flocking to them?

 

People need to understand that Rugby League officials are often fighting an uphill battle. Journo's, fans and club officials don't help in the slightest.

 

I have commented on this issue before. 

 

As Canetman rightly says, you have to work with the financial framework that large corporations decide their principal marketing spend well ahead of when it actually comes into effect. Which means forward planning say 2 years ahead of when the deal needs to take effect and I am not convinced the RFL have worked to that kind of schedule in the past. I do have some sympathy for the commercial manager, his contacts from Man City would probably not bring in much since RL is a very different beast to soccer, and I would expect trying to get competition sponsorship is more difficult than getting sponsorship for a club.

 

Furthermore, when the RFU employee in charge of sponsorship says it is a tough market, and that for an organisation with the clout of the RFU, then you know things are tough.



#22 foozler

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 02:30 PM

RESEARCH carried out by media and marketing consultancy Repucom has suggested that Rugby League can generate a larger share of the wider sponsorship market by drawing attention to the profile of its followers.
And, with 76 of the world’s top 100 brands currently investing in sports sponsorship, the payoff for the game could be significant, particularly in a World Cup year.
So far the RFL has been unable to attract any major sponsors for the tournament, largely because of a delay in confirming overseas broadcasting rights.

Click here to view the article

 

Can I ask why it is the RFL's responsibility to secure tournament sponsorship? Should this not be a collective effort between the RFL, ARL and RLIF?

 

After all, it is the World Cup, could we not have a headline sponsor from the southern hemisphere? Be great value for them when the Aussies hold the cup aloft on a wet Old Trafford night in November?



#23 Dave T

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 03:55 PM

I have commented on this issue before. 

 

As Canetman rightly says, you have to work with the financial framework that large corporations decide their principal marketing spend well ahead of when it actually comes into effect. Which means forward planning say 2 years ahead of when the deal needs to take effect and I am not convinced the RFL have worked to that kind of schedule in the past. I do have some sympathy for the commercial manager, his contacts from Man City would probably not bring in much since RL is a very different beast to soccer, and I would expect trying to get competition sponsorship is more difficult than getting sponsorship for a club.

 

Furthermore, when the RFU employee in charge of sponsorship says it is a tough market, and that for an organisation with the clout of the RFU, then you know things are tough.

 I am managing a £13m marketing budget this year. This budget is not attributed to specific activity. There is always £1-200k available for initiatives minimum. We are not talking about £10-15m per year sponsorship deals.

 

As we are based in Edinburgh and RL has zero presence here, it would be nigh on impossible for me to get something like this signed off even if I wanted to fund RLWC sponsorship.



#24 Dave T

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 03:57 PM

Or half a million on the BBC. I bet if you showed a picture of Sam Tomkins in a Wigan shirt with a ball to 100 people in Norwich - hardly any would recognise him - fair enough. However, people would know it was a rugby player and quite a few would have heard of Wigan. It takes effort both ways and if sponsors have not got any faith in the brand outside of the M62 then we will always get offered peanuts.

 I made the point earlier this year that the RFL hardly encourage nationwide promotion when they only run TV ads in Yorkshire and Granada regions.

 

Financially makes sense, the message it sends out is dangerous.



#25 hoff

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 03:58 PM

Or half a million on the BBC. I bet if you showed a picture of Sam Tomkins in a Wigan shirt with a ball to 100 people in Norwich - hardly any would recognise him - fair enough. However, people would know it was a rugby player and quite a few would have heard of Wigan. It takes effort both ways and if sponsors have not got any faith in the brand outside of the M62 then we will always get offered peanuts.


Well living in Norwich I would ;) Actually there are quite a few casual rugby league fans in Norwich and East Anglia, aparently a team in Kings Lynn started up not long ago made up soley from armchair league fans ( none had any previous playing experience). I even saw a bloke in Lidl wearing a Hull Fc shirt at the weekend!

#26 foozler

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 04:08 PM

Well living in Norwich I would ;) Actually there are quite a few casual rugby league fans in Norwich and East Anglia, aparently a team in Kings Lynn started up not long ago made up soley from armchair league fans ( none had any previous playing experience). I even saw a bloke in Lidl wearing a Hull Fc shirt at the weekend!

 

Given that we have wheelchair RL, could it be that this armchair RL variant is the answer to the sports participation numbers issue? 



#27 Viking Warrior

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 04:12 PM

the whole outlook from red hall is somewhat parochial, we need to sell the product to the entire country not just lancashire and yorkshire, we need to get big players involved in the game such as the stobart sponsorship of widnes (the league deal was a farce) whereby an internationally renowned company sponsored the club and the ground for 5 years. why not look at companies like tesco and sainsbury's who are nationally recognised brands? and bite the bullet and get a major gambling company like william hills on board? methinks that rimmer amd wood are not the men to take the game forward which is apparent with the current botch up over re-structuring. someone like martyn sadler would be an ideal person to run the game as he has a wealth of knowledge and plain good old common sense.
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#28 foozler

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 04:13 PM

 I am managing a £13m marketing budget this year. This budget is not attributed to specific activity. There is always £1-200k available for initiatives minimum. We are not talking about £10-15m per year sponsorship deals.

 

As we are based in Edinburgh and RL has zero presence here, it would be nigh on impossible for me to get something like this signed off even if I wanted to fund RLWC sponsorship.

 

 

I can well understand the difficulties of persuading senior management to sponsor a sport which has zero profile in your country.

 

But surely there has to be some lateral thinking here. For example, Yorkshire Bank is ultimately owned by National Australia Bank Group (so financial services organisations in two parts of the world where RL matters). Now I don't know whether the latter has any involvement with RL in Australia but has someone at the RFL asked a colleague at the ARL whether it is worth contacting NABG?



#29 Dave T

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 05:21 PM

I can well understand the difficulties of persuading senior management to sponsor a sport which has zero profile in your country.

But surely there has to be some lateral thinking here. For example, Yorkshire Bank is ultimately owned by National Australia Bank Group (so financial services organisations in two parts of the world where RL matters). Now I don't know whether the latter has any involvement with RL in Australia but has someone at the RFL asked a colleague at the ARL whether it is worth contacting NABG?

i think the difficulty i'd have is that sponsorship is often a fun and exciting thing for staff and management. At times we struggle to offload Man City or Utd Europe tickets to staff so I cant see us shifting seats to a Warrington or Hull game to our head office staff - apart from maybe me!

Whilst there may be a sound business case for sponsoring Rugby League - Scottish football or RU would always trump this for a company like ours. RU having presence in Londo, Edinburgh, Cardiff and Dublin should not be underestimated.

#30 GeordieSaint

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 07:02 PM

Well living in Norwich I would ;) Actually there are quite a few casual rugby league fans in Norwich and East Anglia, aparently a team in Kings Lynn started up not long ago made up soley from armchair league fans ( none had any previous playing experience). I even saw a bloke in Lidl wearing a Hull Fc shirt at the weekend!

 

Nothing apparent about it; the club are in the second season at West Lynn Rugby Club and I play for them! :) Half the team are Lithanuians and they bloody love it! There is also a team in Stowmarket in Suffolk and of course St Ives in Huntingdon.

 

I think it is criminal that the International TV rights are not in place; in fact they should have been in place a year ago along with the UK deal. If the League Express has got its information correct and that large companies are waiting for these rights to be granted before getting involved in the competition, then it shows how poorly run and organised the game is. That is shocking! They are potentially throwing away a lot of money, prestige and advertising potential out of the window for not having their house in order. The game severely lacks having a credible international governing body and in the UK, a board who are actually capable of running this great game effectively.  


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#31 South Wakefield Sharks

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 07:20 PM

Nothing apparent about it; the club are in the second season at West Lynn Rugby Club and I play for them! :) Half the team are Lithanuians and they bloody love it! There is also a team in Stowmarket in Suffolk and of course St Ives in Huntingdon.

 

I think it is criminal that the International TV rights are not in place; in fact they should have been in place a year ago along with the UK deal. If the League Express has got its information correct and that large companies are waiting for these rights to be granted before getting involved in the competition, then it shows how poorly run and organised the game is. That is shocking! They are potentially throwing away a lot of money, prestige and advertising potential out of the window for not having their house in order. The game severely lacks having a credible international governing body and in the UK, a board who are actually capable of running this great game effectively.  

 

Part of the problem seems to be the way the TV rights were handled. They were sold to IMG who then presumably flog them on, but I guess had some criteria they had to meet. So RLWC2013 had some guaranteed income from selling the TV rights early, but as a result lost control of some of the timing. Though I suspect if we'd sold the TV rights direct, we'd have got shafted even more.



#32 The Future is League

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 07:37 PM

If one year from now we can look back and say the world cup was a success. We have Sponsors for Super League and no clubs have gone to the wall, and crowds are on the rise ii would consdier that a success in todays economic climate.



#33 sweaty craiq

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 12:27 PM

Last thing we need is another Lewis, we need somebody who understands our culture and the commercial strengths this report identifies. There are sufficient benefits to buy into without entering Fairyland again if we employ the right person to sell them.



#34 ParraEelsNRL

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 02:47 PM

2 games of SL a week on TV is the problem, get another game or two a week on TV and the sponsors will come and anyway

2 games a week is ridiculous at this time in history esp for an entrenched sport with over 100 years of professionalism behind it with millions of fans.

 

Pump it up, it deserves to be because it's a great bloody sport. 



#35 ParraEelsNRL

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 02:49 PM

 I am managing a £13m marketing budget this year. This budget is not attributed to specific activity. There is always £1-200k available for initiatives minimum. We are not talking about £10-15m per year sponsorship deals.

 

As we are based in Edinburgh and RL has zero presence here, it would be nigh on impossible for me to get something like this signed off even if I wanted to fund RLWC sponsorship.

National side is different though, sponsor them.



#36 Dave T

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 03:02 PM

National side is different though, sponsor them.

It's not though - based in Edinburgh I wouldn't be able to give tickets away to watch Scotland in Workington or Salford, or even England in Cardiff, London or Huddersfield.



#37 Viking Warrior

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 09:06 PM

the longer we have laurel and hardy running the game in this country then the further into the abyss we are staring.
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#38 Johnoco

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 10:27 PM

Last thing we need is another Lewis, we need somebody who understands our culture and the commercial strengths this report identifies. There are sufficient benefits to buy into without entering Fairyland again if we employ the right person to sell them.

Yeah the last thing we need is someone taking over a bankrupt shambles in 2002 and turning it around. We want an incompetence enthusiast.
It matters not if the game dies through lack of income as long as it is a proper RL man that leads us over the cliff.

#39 keighley

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 10:38 PM

Yeah the last thing we need is someone taking over a bankrupt shambles in 2002 and turning it around. We want an incompetence enthusiast.
It matters not if the game dies through lack of income as long as it is a proper RL man that leads us over the cliff.

+1

#40 sweaty craiq

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 09:27 AM

Yeah the last thing we need is someone taking over a bankrupt shambles in 2002 and turning it around. We want an incompetence enthusiast.
It matters not if the game dies through lack of income as long as it is a proper RL man that leads us over the cliff.

 

Circumstance often plays a huge role in the perception of success, 2002-2007 housing market boom and grants like confetti, you had to try not to do better. Benchmarking is the key and when you do that against our primary competitors the results are poor, culminating in the shambolic Franchise concept.

We do not need some northern bloke to lead us over the cliff, we need some bloke able to understand our strengths and sell them for the market rate - I don't give a monkeys if he is a RL man or not but if you believe in your product my experience tells me it is easier to sell for the right price than if you didn't.

We have a great future, its just that we don't know it.......






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