Our cricket network is very similar to our slightly larger football network but obviously delivers its audience across the months of April-September. This is great as it gives us a year-round option if advertisers want to target those who love sport so much that they pay to play it through the summer when football takes a break.
The model is the same in that it drives cash in to the grassroots of the sport thanks to the fact that 51% of our advertising revenues is paid to the clubs who host the posters.
The audience is slightly older when looking at median age, and more affluent in terms of social grade. It’s the same great environment giving brands the chance to be a true part of the team and the club with 100% share of voice/exclusivity with only one advertisement per changing room. Again, like the football network, the audience knows the advertisers are supporting their club financially, therefore they tend to trust and support those brands in return.
There is arguably a higher frequency of viewing advertisements on the cricket network versus the football posters thanks to the fact players go in and out of the changing rooms more during a game of cricket compared to soccer, but we keep it simple and base our numbers off the lower football model to keep everything bullet-proof.
I started what was called then Grassroot Media after being made redundant in 2011 from Sky. This wasn’t as bad as it sounds as, thanks to Sky being really supportive to us as a team, it gave me the opportunity to sit down and really think about what I wanted to do. At the time I was involved in the running of a large cricket club in Essex which also had a very large football club attached to it.
Having worked in advertising since leaving school I knew the players and club members were a really attractive audience for advertisers (generally men interested in sport are difficult to target outside of TV sports channels) so came up with the idea of putting A3 sized posters in the changing rooms of clubs that wanted to earn some extra cash to help by not doing a lot of work. Everything was, and still is, completely zero cost to clubs.
I had never worked in posters/Out Of Home before, nor run my own business, but the idea and business were sound, so when I hit a bit of a wall after a few years (cash flow issues due to bad debt) I decided rather than go and find an investor to keep it going that I should go out and learn more about the poster market and expose myself to running more businesses.
Six years later and I’ve now worked at one of the biggest poster companies in the world, run the commercial side of two poster firms, and learned more about the sports marketing side of things through running the sales team of a business selling posters and other advertising rights at 50 professional football clubs – so now it’s time to really push the concept of engaging grassroots footballers and cricketers in a way I simply wasn’t able to before.
Relationship to mbcg ltd: mbcg owns this network with exclusivity on advertising sales
Number of venues: 130+
Number of posters: 360+
Monthly footfall: 60,000
Monthly impressions: Over 600,000
Frequency of views per person per visit: 10+
Dwell time per person per visit: +/- 45 mins
Use it if…
You want gender targeting – we are able to offer a 100% male audience.
You only want to target adults – no problems with HFSS or gambling restrictions here, our posters are exclusively in adult/senior changing rooms.
You want you advertising to have some extra ‘feel-good factor’ – players know your advertising is supporting the club they love, and they are more likely to support the brands they see in return.
Case studies/ previous advertisers
Yorkshire Tea ran a season long holding across the entire cricket network as part of their Great British Cricket Tea campaign
Screwfix regularly use the network to support local store launches and marketing efforts