Dec 02, 2009 at 04:56 PM
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New Study: Regional Sponsors Are a Hit in Major League Baseball

Recent data from a study by sponsorship measurement firm FanLab may show that smaller regional brands are standing tall with some of the biggest, official MLB sponsors in the country.

FanLab’s September 2009 study included a national random sample of 1186 consumers who were asked about top-of-mind sponsors of Major League Baseball and then about their interest level in MLB and other professional sports.

“Our research found that sponsors with a regional footprint, like WB Mason, had higher top-of-mind consumer awareness than major national brands like Visa and Toyota within the Northeast,” explains Brian Evans, co-founder of FanLab. “It’s quite impressive to see sponsors with less than 300 Million in revenue be more top of mind than sponsors with billions in revenue. Obviously, some of these little guys are doing something right.”

In addition, FanLab’s study revealed that, in the West region of the country, Safeco Insurance has a higher top-of-mind awareness than State Farm, the official insurance carrier for MLB, and Farmer John meat products connected with more MLB fans than McDonald’s or AT&T.

On a national level, the top 10 brands referenced by fans were:

1. Budweiser

2. Coca-Cola

3. Pepsi

4. Nike

5. Gatorade

6. Bank of America

7. Coors

8. Miller

9. Miller Lite

10. Gillette

“This study illustrates the power of marketing research and how the results don’t always turn out as one might expect. To see smaller, regional brands appear in a study of this scope says a lot about the power of sponsorship.”