Shaken & Stirred - Influential Brand Profiling and Positioning

Research : “All about the poor brand association for sponsors of Euro 2016 among fans” / RadiumOne

Over half of the brands most associated with the 2016 European Football Championships aren’t actually sponsors – according to new research from marketing technology experts RadiumOne.

Coca-Cola, Adidas and Nike are most associated brands

1,000 UK people interested in Euro 2016 were asked to spontaneously cite (i.e. they weren’t given a list) five brands they most associated with it. Although sponsors Coca-Cola (12%) and Adidas (10%) came top, Nike (third at 9%) and 5 other brands not sponsoring the tournament – MasterCard, Heineken, Visa, Barclays and Budweiser – featured among the 10 most associated.

Carlsberg and McDonald’s were the only other sponsors among the 10 most-associated with Euro 2016, whilst three of the sponsors – tyre brand Continental, Turkish Airlines and SOCAR (Azerbaijan’s national oil company) – weren’t even among the 24 brands spontaneously cited.

Unprompted brand association ranking

“With only three weeks left until the tournament starts, sponsors still have much work to do to activate their investment in terms of consumer association,” says Rupert Staines, RadiumOne’s European Managing Director. “Particularly as non-sponsors are achieving a significant ‘halo’ effect from other football-related sponsorships, such as MasterCard and Heineken from the Champions League and Barclays from the Premier League.”

Even after being shown a list of the 10 sponsors, only three – Adidas, Coca-Cola and Carlsberg – were associated with the tournament by over half of people interested in it. The average level of prompted tournament association among fans across the 10 sponsors was just 36%.

Prompted sponsor association ranking

“Sponsors will certainly need to tap into the huge levels of second-screening during the tournament to reinforce their association, such as serving online ads during live matches or highlights shows,” says Staines.

“Syncing online and TV in this way delivers a sustained series of ‘moment marketing’ opportunities and plays to the gravitas of the association, which non-sponsors won’t have.”

Evan Lorne /