Manchester United – more than a club for Aon

Narratives on football sponsors and especially shirts sponsorship are usually limited to how that money is spent, how much a say that sponsor might have on the club and whether the sponsor’s logo looks good on the shirt.

So it’s interesting to read about how sponsoring a club changes the culture of the sponsor itself. We head to where Sean Callahan covers the story of how sponsoring Manchester United has inspired Aon to step up to the next level.

Manchester United unites Aon

Sean writes:

Part of Aon Corp.’s strategy in its sponsorship of soccer club Manchester United is to excite and unify the company, which has been created from 450 acquisitions in 23 years.

When you have the global creative director of Aon, Eric Sawitoski, getting a ‘Red Devils’ tattoo on his right forearm, and their global marketing team working hard since mid-2009 (when the deal was announced) in working on maximising the benefits from sponsoring Manchester United, it’s not fanboy admiration – it’s pure business and the understanding that this is a ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ opportunity to build their brand.

The story of how United invited potential sponsors has been already told to Soccerlens by David Prosperi (Aon’s VP of Global Public Relations), so has the story of the ‘Follow the Football’ campaign and ‘Aon United in 2010’.

Equally interesting is the fact that Aon have used the year leading up to the start of their sponsorship for internal branding and uniting Aon behind a common cause. Spending $120m / £80m has galvanised the company to dedicate significant resources to making the most of this platform. More than empty slogans, Manchester United has been clearly more than a club for Aon.

Read the full article here.

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