Brand sponsorship in rugby can be hugely competitive so any activation carried out for Mazda’s sponsorship of Connacht Rugby and The Guinness PRO14 Final Series needed to create a buzz, social noise and cut-through in what can be a very cluttered environment.
Mazda renegotiated their sponsorship with Connacht Rugby moving from team to car partner. Accordingly, the Agency was tasked to deliver increased brand exposure and create engaging consumer experiences for Mazda. Mazda’s global positioning was to defy convention so the sponsorship of the challenger team in the IRFU brought this to life. Furthermore, as Mazda moved away from its partnership with Connacht Rugby, TRA Brands were briefed to utilise the Official Car Sponsorship of the PRO14 Final Series platform to showcase and launch the new Mazda CX5 SUV.
We developed and implemented a two-pronged approach for the Connacht Rugby sponsorship with a hugely successful ambassador media launch and an engaging hands-on experiential activity for the brand’s target audience and their children. TRA Brands created a national Mazda Roadshow giving young rugby fans and adults the opportunity to meet and train the players of everyone’s favourite challenger team, driving engagement with key household decision makers, encouraging test-drives and realising sales opportunities covering the three provinces. TRA Brands then orchestrated for Mazda to seamlessly exit its agreement with Connacht as they took up a partnership with PRO14 timed with Connacht Rugby’s Kieran Marmion officially handing back the Pro14 Trophy from the champions back to the tournament rightsholders ahead of the final at the Aviva.
The overall sponsorship campaign generated almost €1million reaching over 3.9million through traditional and new media - 28 times ROI. And was central to TRA winning Best Sponsorship Team at the Irish Sponsorship Awards. Working with 8 Connacht Ambassadors, 16 clubs with 514 rugby enthusiasts attending events in Carton House; Connaught Rugby sportsgrounds & Fota, the campaign generated 102 Mazda test drives.