It is fair to say that we live in the times of the most extensive advertising campaigns. Every name comes hand in hand with a dozen other names, usually in abbreviations, which points to deals sealed behind closed doors. Unions bloom to demonstrate the economic power and impact that a partnership can have on the market and in the media.
Who Carries Whom?
We have reached the point where even entertainment is sold not solely through the sheer excitement that it delivers. For example, being one of the most widely watched sports, football comes to the viewer thanks to a broad range of companies. Logos, which have nothing to do with football, carry the sport on their shoulders. But here comes the question – who carries whom?
It appears that some football teams’ equipment does not display the simple combination of a team, a brand, and a single sponsor logo. If you turn on the TV on any sports channel, there is a high chance you will be bombarded with colors and names. Advertising has turned into part of the sport itself, covering a player’s kit with more than three sponsors.
Doesn’t it look like the football teams are carrying the sponsors on their backs, giving them access to the highest level of viewership? To provide an answer to this question, one should weigh out the benefits for each side of this kind of partnership. The factors which decide the significance of advertisements on football kits are the popularity of the team, the number of ads, and the fan-factor.
The Benefits for the Local Club
Smaller, local teams, which want to expand their fan base, need sponsorship and financing. To gain prominence, they need to reach goals not only on the field but also in the business game. For them, advertising is primarily a means of surviving. Therefore you may notice that their equipment includes a handful of logos, which help them climb the stairs of fame.
A “No” to Fashion
However, too many advertisements on a single T-shirt defy the laws of aesthetics. Every company’s name displays differently, and the diversity of fonts could force you to use drops to relieve your eyes when watching a football match. There is no debate that advertising is a two-way victory. Each participant wins a piece of the cake – the sponsor receives an acknowledgment, and the team gets money. The issue we see here is that, often, there is no limit, and the football industry becomes more of a business enterprise than a sport.
Of course, in the 21st Century, one cannot expect the chimera of a commercially clean sports industry. Nonetheless, there should still be a clear distinction between the two. An avid fan would want the logo of his/her favorite team to be presented on the kit instead of getting lost amongst the logos of sponsors. Chances are the fans, especially the little ones, who are also a significant merchandise target, do not even recognize the abbreviations. So the last question is: is it worth it replacing the authenticity of the team’s mark for a future of ostentatious advertising? Too much is not always attractive.