Manchester United Flies High with Turkish Airlines Ad Campaign
Sports marketing is almost a field of its own. Managers and specialists use different strategies and ways of approaching their fans and customers than traditional businesses. Maybe it’s the nature of sports; people idolize and support athletes and teams, they feel that they belong, that they are part of a certain football club, they identify themselves with a specific athlete, etc.
So, this connection, this special relationship the fans experience, needs a special approach. It the next few lines follows an example of a succesful marketing campaign from Turkish airlines and the football club of Manchester united:
Turkish Airlines saluted Manchester United’s new Premiership season by taking 19 lucky fans from around the world to the city of Manchester. It began with Turkish Airlines launching the “Fans United” contest on their international Facebook page. The goal was to help a few lucky fans experience Manchester United culture in its home, the city of Manchester.
First stop was Old Trafford, where the group was treated to a private, behind-the-scenes tour. This was an experience with stops at the players’ dressing room, the dug-out, and the club’s award-winning museum. On August 24, the winners travelled to Carrington where they got to watch the first-team of Manchester United warm up before tactical training by Sir Alex Ferguson. They also had the privilege to get autographs and talk with famous team members such as Rio Ferdinand and Javier “Chicarito” Hernandez.
The group was treated to lunch at the Old Trafford’s Red Cafe, followed by visits to some of Manchester’s other impressive sights, before being treated to dinner at one of the city’s finest restaurants. But the real highlight of the trip arrived on Saturday, when the group witnessed United’s 3-2 win over Fulham in the first home game of the season from some of the best seats in Old Trafford’s East Stand. It was the perfect way to cap an incredible few days in an experience that one winner described as “a dream come true.”
By the end of this four-month social media campaign, the Fans United application reached out to over 322 million people globally to give 19 lucky Red Devils fans an unforgettable experience.
During the four-month of the engagement Turkish Airlines was able to successfully leverage its partnership with the team by having Man Utd share the contest directly with its 29 million Facebook fans. According to the official numbers from Man Utd, the engagement generated a staggering number of impressions across its channels, coming in at shade over 322 million.
So, there is no doubt that this ad campaign by Turkish Airlines in combination with the most famous football club in the world was a great success.
Sport sponsorship is a relatively new phenomenon. The concept of having a brand’s logo advertised in the stadium or on promotional material was revolutionary to the sports industry. Now, everything imaginable is sponsored. But one begs the question: are sports too saturated with sponsors now that it takes away from the purity of the game?
Bussines Development Manager at Galoo.
Member of youth council of Republic of Srpska.
I love football, paintball, climbing and art.