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In the right place at the right time! Sports sponsorship. Food for thought

The marketing director gave us all the necessary information we needed to be able to put together a good proposal. Marketing and promotional objectives, which use he wanted to make of hospitality and how he intended to employ the team in communication…And, sweetest of all, the available budget, yes, even the budget.

On the basis of these indications, we assembled what we believed to be the ideal solution. We presented the project and read the disappointment in the eyes of this man, or guess that he expected something different, more “visually consistent with the company’s status”. Truly, companies always aspire to large spaces.

But is it better to give priority to quality or quantity in sponsorships? “I expected it to be more visible” (which translated means – it seems small to me). It is often the first comment we are given.

But are you sure that a big space is always more visible and therefore better than a smaller one in a better position? And that visibility is consequently higher? Does size matter?

In real life doesn’t work that way, at least not always, there are small, even very small, parts of the bike or of the rider that are often framed longer by the cameras during live TV and which generate a greater ROI compared to other positions that at a quick glance, most people would consider superior.

For example, and hypothetically, in MotoGP, it would be preferable to have the zip cover of the racing suit (see screenshot) where Valentino Rossi has been exposing the scholastic “WLF“* for years or a big brand on his stomach? The mark on the belly is often not framed because the cameras are focused on Valentino’s face during the interviews…Therefore, the position must always be considered in addition to size. Quality and not just quantity. And it happens even with cars, rugby or tennis players and so on.

rossi_intervista-1As already mentioned, and I will never get tired of repeating it, being led by gut feeling is not always the right thing when it comes to sponsorship.

As a corollary of these few lines, it is good to remember that there are several companies that deal with measuring the returns of visibility related to the exposure of a brand in a sporting event.

If you want, you can do ex-ante research to make a forecast of returns in visibility ** and of the congruity of the price.

If you wish to have more information about sponsorships read What is a Sponsorship Activation and please contact us at our email address:


*“WLF” For not English speaking WLF used to be written a lot in locker rooms of secondary schools

** based on the results of previous years of the same position

Riccardo Tafà
Riccardo Tafà
Riccardo was born in Giulianova, graduated in law at the University of Bologna and decided to do something else. After a stint at ISFORP (public relations training institute) in Milan, he moved to England. He began his career in London in PR, first at MSP Communication and then at Counsel Limited. Then, following his unhealthy passion for sport, he moved to Jean Paul Libert's SDC and started working in two and four-wheelers, this was in 1991/1992. A brief move to Monaco followed, where he worked alongside the owner of Pro COM, a sports marketing agency founded by Nelson Piquet. He returned to Italy and started working in the first person as RTR, first a consulting firm and then a sports marketing company. 
Back in 2001 RTR won the ESCA award for the best sports MKTG project in Italy in the year 2000. Among other things, RTR obtained the highest score among all categories and represented Italy in the ESCA European Contest. From that moment on, RTR will no longer participate in other national or international awards. Over the years he takes some satisfaction and swallows a lot of toads. But he is still here, writing in a disenchanted and simple manner, with the aim of giving practical (unsolicited) advice and food for thought.
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