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Volume 21 No. 2
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Driving loyalty: PGA Tour fans identify FedEx

Photo by: GETTY IMAGES
The FedEx-PGA Tour partnership was the most recognized brand-property alliance in sports, according to surveys conducted in 2017 for SportsBusiness Journal by Turnkey Sports & Entertainment. Across the eight sponsor loyalty surveys that measured fans’ awareness of 83 official league-brand relationships and nearly 600 brands (official and nonsponsor), it was the PGA Tour’s long-standing relationship with FedEx that stood out.

Fifty-nine percent of the 400 PGA Tour fans surveyed during last season’s FedEx Cup Playoffs correctly identified FedEx as the property’s official shipping partner when presented with a list of competing companies in that field.

The sponsor loyalty series, which debuted in 2007, includes annual studies of MLB, MLS, NASCAR, NBA, NFL, NHL, PGA Tour and NCAA fans.

Overall, NASCAR had three partners ranked in the top 10 of the most recognized partnerships — Goodyear, Monster and Coca-Cola — the most of any property.

Among avid fans across the 2017 surveys, the NFL’s partnerships with Papa John’s (since 2010) and Gatorade (1983) were the most recognized. The league has two of sports’ most-recognized relationships.

Additionally, 52 percent of the NHL’s casual fans knew that Gatorade was the league’s official sports drink, a status it has held since 2006. NASCAR’s longtime Goodyear partnership (1997) and the NCAA’s Capital One deal (2010) were the only other relationships to top the 50 percent threshold among that fan segment.

— David Broughton