Today, Eurosport launches an ambitious new brand identity (marking the end of a lengthy 18-month brand review), supported by the strapline: “All Sports. All Emotions”. Eurosport’s numbers are impressive: 123 million homes, 59 countries, 13.2M watching every week, broadcasting 120 sports, commentary in 20 different languages, the results are even better: subscription revenue up 16% in 2010, ad sales revenue up 11% the same year.
The appetite for sports is hot. Recent major investments by market leaders including ESPN and Sky Sports has shown that the television sports market is as competitive (and profitable) as ever. Eurosport is raising the stakes, with a new emotionally charged visual identity that seeks to make a play as a preeminent global sports brand.
According to Eurosport chief executive Laurent-Eric Le Lay, the brand benefits from the pervasive and perennial appeal of sport among Europeans. It is an arena where they share more in common than in any other aspect of culture, he claims: emotion and passion.
“All Europeans share the same passion for sports, even if you have some differences country by country. For many sports events we have this kind of European culture that helps us to market the concept of Eurosport all over the Continent.”
One predicted challenge of making the on-air branding uniform across all markets is that it might appear corporate or uninspiring – not especially suited to any of its markets, but instead a European generic import into all of them. The channel has developed new idents to be shown between programmes in an attempt to mitigate this effect.
A series of six new channel idents have been shot, each drawing on one key emotion for its inspiration: Joy, Anger, Empathy, Encouragement, Surprise and Anguish, and incorporating 18 different sports disciplines. The brief for Paris-based broadcast production agency, Les Telecreateurs? Put the fans and the emotions felt when watching sport at the heart of the narrative. Audio branding specifically designed to “enhance the moods associated when watching sport” was handled by Amsterdam agency Massive Music.
The new brand identity and graphics revamp will be deployed on-air, online and mobile and in every Eurosport office around the world, as well as for the group’s advertising, marketing and corporate communications. The new brand strategy also positions the group for future expansion into new territories and the launch of new products on to the market.
A very special thanks to Eurosport who have allowed me to share a special 8 minute “behind the scenes/making of” reel. You can enjoy that right here.
Fundamentally, Le Lay would like consumers to see Eurosport as a pan-European multimedia brand, and the broadcaster’s marketing is evolving accordingly. “Marketing is going to be more and more important. We started Eurosport by concentrating on the events we broadcast, and we have to continue to do that. But we have to take more and more care of the marketing side. We have to pay attention to our brand. We have to work on it, we have to stimulate it and we have to market it.”