Log-Ons and Sponsors and Boats, Oh My!
Who knew sailors could surf? According to a nationwide study of sailing fans by Performance Research, over half (61%) of the America?s Cup audience reported logging on after almost every race and nearly three fourths (74%) followed the America?s Cup on the internet this year, a testament to the expanded internet coverage and the ever-increasing number of internet users. Virtual Spectator Limited (providing subscriptions to live on-line coverage of the America?s Cup) might be a good site to place your virtual bets with 45% of the fans commenting that they would be “Somewhat” or “Very likely” to pay for extended coverage such as Virtual Spectator during future America?s Cup defenses (19% of those surveyed signed on with Virtual Spectator to follow this year?s Cup).
Sponsors win even when boats lose. According to Nicole Alio, project manager for Performance Research U.S., “There seems to be an overall acceptance of and appreciation for the sponsors of this America?s Cup compared to the previous three defenses. I believe this approval is because fans are beginning to realize that corporate sponsorship is essential to creating a winning team and to bringing the Cup back to the United States”. In fact, the vast majority of fans interviewed (81%) approved corporate sponsorship as “Essential to the overall success of the event”. Sponsors are not only becoming accepted by the fans but are seen as “More innovative” (62%) and “More interested in their customers” (53%) than their competitors as a result of their affiliation with the America?s Cup. There has been a steady increase in reported brand loyalty when comparing the results to a similar study conducted during the 1995 defense (34%) where now, nearly one half (44%) of the fans interviewed reported that they would “Almost always” or “Frequently” select America?s Cup sponsors? products over those of non-sponsors.
Paul Cayard talks the talk and walks the walk. Even though the fans were somewhat evenly split among which U.S. syndicate they had originally hoped would make it to the finals, (America One 23% / Young America 27% / America True 18% / Star & Stripes 20% / Abaracadabara 3%), the performance of skipper Paul Cayard seemed to endear him as the future US representative. Sailing fans rated Paul Cayard highest (47%) as the America?s Cup personality they would most trust as a product endorser over other stalwarts including Dennis Conner (23%), Dawn Riley (33%) and Russell Couts (32%). Furthermore, three out of the seven most frequently recalled America?s Cup sponsors were affiliated with Paul Cayard and America One ? Ford, Hewlett Packard, and SAIC. Citizen, Toyota, Italian syndicate sponsor Prada and Challenger series sponsor Louis Vuitton rounded out the top seven mentions. According to the fans, Paul Cayard is the man with the right message and image that sponsors should look to in the future.
The typical America?s Cup fan in this study was a male (66%) college graduate (84%) over 45 years of age (75%), with a total annual household income of $60,000 or more (83%).
Three hundred and four (304) telephone interviews were conducted nationwide among respondents who had watched at least two races on ESPN2 and/or had used the Internet at least once a week to follow the America?s Cup racing. One hundred (100) interviews were conducted during the Louis Vuitton Challenger Series 1/18/00-1/20/00. Two hundred and four (204) interviews were conducted after the conclusion of the finals 3/2/00-3/7/00. The margin of error is no more than + 6.
Full List of Independent Studies
Consumer attitudes to the oil giant and its marketing
Study of Olympic sponsorship (Albertville)
Study of Olympic sponsorship (Barcelona)
Study of Olympic sponsorship (Lillehammer)
Racestat: a comprehensive analysis of the NASCAR audience
Indy Car Study
America’s Cup sponsorship
Study of Olympic sponsorship (Atlanta)
ESPN X-Games audience study
Consumer attitudes toward corporate sponsorship of the arts
Consumer attitudes to the Olympics following Salt Lake City Scandal
Research at the Daytona 500
Study of sponsorship at the Indianapolis US Formula One Grand Prix
Study of Olympic sponsorship at Sydney
A look at how visitors connect to the commercial clutter of Times Square.
Study of Olympic sponsorship at Vancouver
The latest report.
NASCAR Winston 500
Consumer reaction to sponsorship of arenas and stadiums
Study explores attitudes to corporate sponsorship among Poles.
Research at the Rugby World Cup
Research among European Formula 1 Grand Prix
Millennium Dome sponsorship awareness study
Research at the British F1 Grand Prix
Attitudes of F1 racing fans to the introduction of US motorsports in Britain
Research into sponsorship effectiveness at Euro
UK cricket sponsorship – beyond awareness
Compares and contrasts opinions of visitors to both the 2000 US and 2000 British Formula One Grand Prix.