Why is the NFL struggling to break into the UK?
Photo by C Watts
As the National Football League becomes increasingly irritated by its inability to attract European fans, plans are being finalised for the NFL to make a big arrival in Europe.
The NFL has drafted in notorious marketing giant WPP and investment firm Bruin Sports Capital, to drastically increase the European viewership for the NFL on televisions and mobile devices.
A new company will be formed that WPP and Bruin will head with the sole aim to sell Game Pass. This gives viewers live and on-demand access to all NFL games as well as full replays, condensed games, the RedZone channel and other football content. The new company will be based in London initially and focus on selling to the whole of Europe. It will be the newest venture by the NFL to try and gain some market share in Europe, as they attempt to move towards the goal of reaching $25 Billion revenue by 2027. The NFL’s current revenue sits at $14 Billion this year with a very small portion coming from outside of the US. This move shows that this unmistakably American league cannot grow overseas without the aid of outside businesses that have specific knowledge in their respective markets.
Representatives of the NFL insist that the audience is out there but make the point that the problem is reaching out to them. The venture will require $10 million investment to get off the ground, not including the marketing, according to industry experts. The profits from the venture will be split between both parties. The core focus, however, is to raise awareness of the NFL in Europe and reach out to fans that would be loyal to the franchise, essentially to create a fan base centralising in Europe.
An increasing number of the public have access to social media and more importantly are using it not only to communicate but to make decisions. Donald Trump realised that embracing immediacy and incorporating transparency, was the key to gaining social media awareness. Overall, online interest in Trump was three times higher than Clinton, according to Google trends analysis. Trump was the most Googled candidate and most mentioned on Twitter and Facebook. Upon reflection, much of the analysis of how Trump beat Clinton, has focused on old school tactics such as scheduling and polling. Such a worldwide upset, however, has brought to light the direction that not only marketing but also politics is moving in – towards digital platforms.
With the NFL investing so much in attempting to gain some of the lucrative 294 Billion Euro European sports market, taking pointers from Donald Trump’s marketing team would be a wise move. They understood that having an immediate and current digital marketing presence was key to becoming relatable and consequently winning over voters. It will be interesting to see if the NFL follow Trump’s example in increasing their digital presence to help them create the loyal European fans that they crave.
If you want to know about using social media marketing to engage people with your business then get in touch with the team at Grow Marketing.