Visa is kicking off its 15th season as sponsor of the NFL with new marketing plans, including greater emphasis on local teams.
Visa has become the exclusive payment services sponsor of the Jacksonville Jaguars, Minnesota Vikings, Indianapolis Colts and Tennessee Titans -- adding to its roster that already includes the Atlanta Falcons, Baltimore Ravens, Buffalo Bills, Carolina Panthers, Cleveland Browns, Denver Broncos, New England Patriots, New Orleans Saints and San Francisco 49ers.
"We naturally look for ways to increase Visa's connection to the NFL at both the league and team level," Andrew Woodward, Visa's head of marketing and sponsorship communications, tells Marketing Daily . "Our relationships with 13 NFL teams provide ongoing opportunity to reinforce Visa preference and acceptance. Fans will find Visa branding at all team payment terminals within the stadiums, including concession areas and team shops."
Visa is the preferred card for ticket sales, concessions and merchandise and will have point-of-sale branding online and at all team payment terminals within the stadiums, including concession areas and team shops of 13 NFL teams.
Beyond the local sponsorships, an integrated marketing campaign will feature national promotion and advertising, new team relationships, exclusive Visa signature offers for cardholders and Visa halftime reports on Fox NFL broadcasts.
Visa, which has sponsored the NFL since 1995, will award one football fan with a trip to the Super Bowl for the rest of their life. From Sept. 9 until Dec. 31, Visa cardholders in the U.S. will automatically be entered for a chance to win when they use their Visa card. Every year, beginning with Super Bowl XLV in north Texas in 2011, one grand prize winner and one guest will receive round-trip airfare, accommodations and tickets to the Super Bowl.
Beginning in September and continuing throughout the season, Visa will promote the sweepstakes with digital advertisements that will appear on popular football Web sites such as NFL.com.
In October, Visa will introduce the "Fans Forever" campaign featuring national TV spots and social media. For the seventh consecutive season, Visa also will present the Visa Halftime Report on Fox NFL broadcasts.
This year's campaign will include participation by more than 600 financial institutions that issue Visa cards and four national merchants that accept them, including United Airlines, Doubletree Hotels, Chevron, and Southwest Airlines. Visa's marketing support for financial institution clients includes participation in the national promotion, access to Visa's unique NFL Signature experiences, and other customized promotional opportunities such as the chance to participate in the official Super Bowl coin toss.
"Our long-standing sponsorship strategy has always focused on aligning ourselves with best-in-class properties, like the NFL, FIFA and the Olympic Games, that enable Visa to promote, enhance and reinforce preference for our products and services," Woodward says. "The NFL is the premiere professional sports property in the U.S., and its popularity gives us a unique opportunity to reach a huge, passionate audience."
For the sixth consecutive year, Visa has teamed up with the NFL and NFL players to help high school and college students take control of their financial future via "Financial Football," a free money management video game and the centerpiece of a nationwide initiative to promote financial literacy.