After having concluded several major partnership agreements with the largest three football leagues, Ksenia Morozova, the Parimatch’s Head of sponsorships, explained how the company assessed potential partners. She emphasized that signing a paper is only the initial step to a successful partnership.
iGaming Times: Over the last couple of months, you have signed sponsorships with huge football entities like Juventus, Leicester City, Everton, and La Liga. How much is it essential for Parimatch to keep its name alongside such brilliant brands in such a proactive market as football betting?
Ksenia Morozova, Head of sponsorships at Parimatch: It’s very essential. In our sponsorship strategy, we intend to achieve such primary objectives as:
- to generate knowledge and increase brand awareness among new target audiences;
- to stimulate interest and demand in new regions where our brand and product can be potentially launched in the nearest future;
- to increase and maintain the loyalty of the existing audience.
Every partnership has its own weak and strong sides. We are on the way to be effective in splitting them and achieving our objectives simultaneously.
IGT: What was your strategy in targeting those entities? Were you aimed at shared values or geographical coverage, or both of them?
KM: Various criteria are, definitely, accounted for. We provide a lot of testing and evaluation before we start any negotiation. We are lucky to have a solid team specialized in sports marketing and media. Altogether we always do researches, collect and analyze a vast amount of information. We need these data as a firm argument to have a further constructive and effective negotiation. There is no secret that every region has its unique situation and business purposes. They might be realized in the form of different political and economic environments, according to the preferences of the target audience, by building marketing and media strategies, etc. These and more factors are taken into account by our team before deciding and picking the most effective partner to cover every need we have. It is difficult but entirely possible!
IGT: Why are sponsorships so valuable? And what advantages do they offer over a more traditional advertising campaign?
KM: To my mind, we can’t compare traditional campaigns with partnership collaborations and consider them competitive. It should be kept in the right balance. There were many examples when celebrities’ ambassadors were highly ineffective, and a partnership with them was just a waste of resources in time and money. In sponsorship, signing a contract paper is only the initial step which leads to no result yet. In this case, the most significant thing is to utilize the asset properly that will affect positively and multiply its value. In this deal, I always say that there are no wrong partners and ambassadors. You just need to know how to cook them.
IGT: How does Parimatch measure the return on investment for the sponsorships? Is it possible to predict it accurately before the sponsorships are signed?
KM: As I have mentioned before, we provide many evaluations and predictions before we start any negotiation. Most of them are made to receive a clear understanding of what we’re going to get and what could be the possible ROI. We are aiming to be very transparent and constructive with both our potential and existing partners. We appreciate the time taken because time is money. That’s why we don’t want to waste anybody’s time. When we receive a counteroffer, we are used to operating with figures and data as a firm argument for our partners to clearly understand the objectives and results we expect from the sponsorship agreement.
IGT: In the UK, does the regulator’s recent interest in banning football betting advertisements impact your sponsorship decision? Is it considered a reason for Parimatch to worry about?
KM: We always come across different obstacles that may seem negative or something. But we should find in them a privilege for us to start searching, finding new opportunities, and creating new strategies. That’s why we don’t worry much about that.