In MotoGP, MotoGP, Sponsorizzazioni Sportive

In motorsport, the quest for the viewer’s attention is not limited to the track and cars or motorcycles but extends to the smallest and most tactical angles, such as the visors of drivers’ helmets. These small spaces, though negligible on the surface, have proven to be an exceptional asset for sponsors, eager to discover ever more innovative ways to stand out among the myriad of brands present, sometimes haphazardly.

Connect to the star

In recent years, there has been a marked increase in the importance of sponsors who prefer to display their brand on riders. Every millimeter of the helmet, the suit and, even more so, the visor, has been turned into a treasure trove for inserting logos. The physical proximity to our hero makes this option one of the first to consider when approaching a sponsorship project setting ambitious visibility goals against perhaps low investment.

After races, interviews, or the podium, these small but tactical spaces provide sponsors with prolonged and unparalleled visibility given that one is connected to a human being who transfers emotions in a different and more powerful way than a mechanical medium, albeit as exceptional as a F1 or a MotoGP.

Visibility and prime locations

The visor in particular provides a privileged position, ensuring that the sponsor’s logo is constantly visible whenever the rider is caught by the front camera, with tight shots seeking the eyes of the protagonists. The centrality of the visor, and the ability to be present on it, is vital in an age when digital media plays a key role in disseminating the image of riders and teams.

Particularly on social media, mostly enjoyed via telephone, thus with small screens, tight shots of the protagonists dominate.

unbraked gresini

Differences between pilot spaces and team spaces

Unlike the large spaces available on racing vehicles and team equipment, the visor represents a unique space dedicated to riders. This distinction gives sponsors an exclusive opportunity to link not only to the team but also to the driver’s personal image and charisma, intensifying the emotional impact on the public.

Some Examples: Unbraked and Galileo Lenses

Notable examples of this strategy can be found in collaborations between drivers and brands such as Unbraked and Alex Marquez or Andrea Dovizioso and Lenti Galileo. These alliances have not only benefited from the visibility resulting from the prominent position on the visor but have Generated and are generating engaging storytelling who have established their footprint in the motorsport world, in a nutshell creativity and strategy can convert a small physical space into a powerful marketing tool.

andrea dovizioso galileo motogp sponsorship

A bit of history

Helmet sponsorship in Formula 1 began in the 1960s.
Before that time, legends like Juan Manuel Fangio, Nino Farina and Jack Brabham raced without any sponsors.
1968 marked a watershed era, when the FIA granted drivers and single-seaters the freedom to flaunt sponsorships, irrevocably changing the essence of the sport.

photo_2024-03-30_14-24-31What about this helmet? It tells a fascinating story.
Jochen Rindt, a German racing driver, was among the first to display ad spaces on his helmet, setting a precedent for today’s drivers.
Rindt, tragically known for being the only Formula One World Champion awarded posthumously, had as his manager none other than Bernie Ecclestone. The latter, a strategic mastermind, revolutionized sports marketing in a single night by affixing this request to his client’s helmet.

One is amazed reflecting on how far the field has progressed.
Interestingly, before the introduction of sponsored liveries, the color of the cars in Formula 1 was an emblem of the nationality of the team: racing red for Italy, bleu de France for France, and racing green for the United Kingdom.

Why a sponsorship agency

The evolution of sponsorship strategies in motorsport highlights the critical importance of including in the equation a’
specialized agency
. Because of their expertise and knowledge of the industry, these agencies are able to unearth the most lucrative opportunities and negotiate spaces and conditions to maximize the visibility and impact of sponsors. In this context, the role of a sports sponsorship agency proves essential to successfully navigating the complex ecosystem of paddocks and backboxes.

Conclusion

The helmet visor emerges as a significantly valuable advertising space in motorsport, providing sponsors with direct and distinctive visibility. In a domain where every detail matters, deciding to invest in this seemingly modest but effective space can make all the difference in a brand’s positioning. Working with a competent sponsorship agency is vital to making the most of this potential.

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Riccardo Tafà
Riccardo Tafà
Managing Director for RTR Sports, Riccardo graduated in law at the University of Bologna. He began his career in London in PR, then started working in two and four-wheelers. A brief move to Monaco followed before returning to Italy. There he founded RTR, first a consulting firm and then a sports marketing company which, eventually, he moved back to London.
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Sponsor on the visor: small sticker, great effectiveness, RTR Sports