More than 120 hours spread over 17 days contributing to the successful development of WEURO 2017 in the town of Breda. In this post I will share my 3 most valuable learnings from my experience as an assistant to the UEFA marketing team.
1. Marketing, the center of all operations
Being involved from start to finish in the tournament has allowed me to understand the full range of operations that are carried out in the marketing field at a major event like WEURO 2017. The following areas have been the ones that have occupied most of the time of the marketing department:
- Clean Site Principle. As deeply analysed in an earlier post, this principle ensures the compliance with sponsors rights, the own tournament visual communication and the elimination of competing brands in relation to official partners. From the press conference room, the tunnel or pitch-side boards to the stadium facade. These and many more conform the dossier of assets that have to be taken into account.
- Youth Programmes. It is one of the duties that provides emotional content and that also has an important media impact. These are all those boys and girls who have the opportunity to be part of match operations and to be closer than ever to the players. Ball kids, Player Escorts, Center Circle Carriers, Official Match Ball Carrier and National Team Flag Bearers are part of the youth team. Marketing’s responsibility is to facilitate the set-up of everything needed and to ensure the proper execution of the protocol during the pre-match ceremony.
- Sponsorship activations. Sponsors satisfaction and making sure that their activation actions meet expectations is always a marketing concern. Either activations as merchandising, entertainment outside the stadium or the sponsorship of the Player of the Match trophy must be carefully implemented in order to provide the brands with direct returns of investment.
- Food & Beverage concessions. Supervising and maintaining the proper functioning of the stadium’s food and drink concessions is also on the daily agenda. On the one hand, ensuring that, during all games, fans can correctly purchase the products offered in both indoor and outdoor bars. On the other hand, it is also crucial to take care of the concessions branding to protect the rights acquired by the corresponding brands. In other words, being aware that no competition or non-regulated products are being sold during the match.
2. Women’s football continues making history
In WEURO 2017, several records have been broken at different levels. For instance, game attendance, TV audience or social media interaction. Besides host country expectation and following up by Dutch fans, the tournament’s media impact has spread throughout 80 countries worldwide. From my experience, the deployment of organisation members, the relevant presence of journalists in the press conference room or the atmosphere lived during the matches have exceeded all my expectations. These are one of the most outstanding figures that demonstrate the good shape of this sport:
Total TV audience (milion)
Countries watching the tournament
Aggregate fan attendance
3. An extraordinary team for a record-breaking event
The privilege of living first-hand a major event of this size adds up to the luck of being surrounded by a first-level team. Members of UEFA team, including press, communications, TV, marketing, match operations or VIP, are always expected to have extensive experience in elite competition organisation. And so it was. However, at the human level, the closeness and empathy that described the team also argued for their valuable contribution on and off the field.
Without a doubt, I come back from Holland with a unique experience that pushes me to be better both professionally and personally and with a list of people whom I can only be grateful.