Vodafone has emerged as the most noticed sponsor in the Indian Premier League cricket competition ahead of title sponsor DLF real estate, according to an Asia Pacific region survey by media agency MEC.
Even though the FIFA World Cup hasn’t actually started yet its sponsors have and long-time supporters Adidas and Coca-Cola have created the most awareness of their efforts to date. Newcomer Sony also looks to be doing well, being the fifth most noticed sponsor in China and third in Thailand.
For years sponsorship was looked down on rather, viewed as an excuse for a corporate jolly as much as marketing promotion. But the phenomenal success of the World Cup in particular, even outside the European and South American heartlands of the game, means that many companies take money out of everyday marketing, including television advertising, to save up for the biggest TV event on earth.
Cricket is less of a world game but attracts huge audiences in India for the 20/20 IPL competition. Vodafone will currently have mixed feelings about its involvement in India; pleased that it topped the sponsor ratings, less thrilled that it had to write off more than £2bn in India last year as it was hit by a price war and extra costs to buy spectrum.