Business of Sport
SA stadium advertising soars
Johannesburg - Migration to digital platforms in South Africa is growing at a rapid rate, with sponsors and advertisers seeking big returns on their investments based on the massive fan following that football, cricket and rugby hold not just in South Africa but across the African continent as well.
Leading sports solutions agency SAIL has been at the forefront of new innovations to hit our shores and continues to set the benchmark for sports marketing and advertising in South Africa.
Earlier this year, SAIL commissioned Repucom to do extensive research on the value of digital stadium advertising and in just a matter of months, this research has proved crucial in attracting new sponsors and retaining the current sponsors. Having purchased the most technologically advanced boards available, SAIL have been offering their clients’ prime advertising space on a larger platform at various stadiums across the country. It therefore comes as little surprise that MTN and Bonitas have come on board to convey their message to various target markets on a platform that reaps huge returns.
“This is a natural progression for advertisers and sponsors in South Africa because LED’s give you so many more options. LED boards are convenient, multi-dimensional, interactive and colourful and because various formats can be used, sponsors have flexibility in terms of the type of messaging they’re trying to convey while also having the option to change messaging and design for different games. South African sport is growing at a rapid rate, so in keeping with international trends, we are offering our clients more value for money because digitial advertising is the way of the future for sport and advertisers alike,” said SAIL CEO Justin Sampson.
On the 1st May 2011, SAIL signed a deal that allowed them exclusive rights to all forms of LED advertising at Loftus Stadium. This covers all Vodacom Bulls home games during the Super 15 rugby tournament, as well as all home games for the Vodacom Blue Bulls during the Absa Currie Cup season and any other sporting event that is held at Loftus. Industry leaders SAIL took the decision to increase LED board exposure at this stadium from 110 metres to 220 metres, thereby allowing for a much larger platform on which to display your brand and gaining more exposure for your product.
On the football front, Soweto giants Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs are key audience drivers in the Absa Premiership bragging annual increases in television viewership on both SABC 1 and SuperSport. The value of LED boards during Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates games is based on the amount of coverage these arch-rivals receive on television and the popularity of these teams who attract far greater numbers in television audiences than the league’s average.
MTN, title sponsors of the MTN8, concluded their deal with SAIL for the MTN8 semi-finals and final whereby they were guaranteed over 80m of exclusive advertising. The platform guaranteed the mobile operators maximum exposure targeting their relevant market and averaging a return of at least 5:1.
“We’ve noticed steady increases in viewership figures over the past few years at all Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates clashes, and those numbers will no doubt continue to grow. As title sponsors, we use the digital advertising platform to further convey our messaging and felt that the two-legged semi-finals and final would be the ideal platform.
In addition to the final being sold out, there was also maximum interest from a television audience perspective,” said MTN’s Desiree Pooe.
Last season, Pick n Pay’s LED branding during Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs home games was a resounding success. An initial investment delivered more than 6 times that in exposure through live and repeat broadcasts and it is anticipated that an increased financial commitment for the 2011/2012 season will produce greater returns.
Reports of these returns spread like wildfire and has already enticed medical fund Bonitas to add their name to LED advertising in domestic football. Bonitas will have five minutes of advertising at all Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates home games for the 2011/2012 PSL season in 30 second increments. As an added service for the client, SAIL assisted Bonitas with the conceptualisation and design of their LED boards.
Bonitas GM of Inland Sales Mr. Mike Macamo commented “The PSL is rated amongst the top 20 leagues in the world and has appeal in various quarters such as South Africa, Africa and Europe. We understand this appeal and more importantly the value and benefits of advertising in the league, which is why we chose this platform and medium.
Soccer ranks number one on various levels, thus providing us with a platform to reach different target markets. We wanted maximum exposure and what better way to achieve that than during a match featuring South Africa’s most supported clubs.”