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Fifa World Cup tops SportsPro’s 50 Most Marketable Properties list for second year

Men’s international soccer showpiece ranks first on SponsorPulse-powered list ahead of the Summer Olympics and the NBA.

18 October 2021 Ed Dixon

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  • Spanish soccer giants Real Madrid and Barcelona round out top five
  • Seven new entries in 2021 standings, including four F1 teams
  • List ranks international sports properties, including leagues, teams, governing bodies and major events, using SponsorPulse’s Opportunity Score

The Fifa World Cup has retained its place at the top of the SportsPro World’s 50 Most Marketable (50MM) Properties list powered by SponsorPulse.

Having placed first in last year’s inaugural sports properties list, the men’s international soccer showpiece tournament again came out on top in 2021, finishing ahead of the Summer Olympic Games and the National Basketball Association (NBA). Spanish club soccer giants Real Madrid and Barcelona both maintained their spots near the top of the ranking, placing fourth and fifth respectively.

As in 2020, soccer dominates the list, providing seven of the top ten entries. Seven new entries, including four Formula One teams, feature in the top 50, the highest being 14th-placed Scuderia Ferrari. Cricket’s Indian Premier League (IPL) and mixed martial arts (MMA) promotion the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) are the biggest climbers in the ranking, rising 13 and 12 places respectively.

Now in its second year, the list ranks international sports properties, including leagues, teams, governing bodies and major events, according to SponsorPulse’s Opportunity Score – one universal currency that allows decision makers to instantly compare properties based on seven key metrics: engagement, intensity, momentum, passion, excitement, purchase consideration, and favourability.

SponsorPulse’s robust methodology, which is based upon surveys of over 30,000 people every month, studies the perception of consumers across 18 of the largest markets worldwide to accurately determine people’s behaviours and emotions towards the property, and how they react to sponsors of said properties. More than 250,000 people between the ages of 13 and 64 influenced the list, which saw a total of 185 global sports properties measured.

This year’s 50MM properties ranking follows on from SportsPro’s athletes and brands lists, which were topped respectively by US gymnast Simone Biles and sportswear brand Nike.

Now in its 12th year, SportsPro’s 50MM platform enables sports marketers to make sponsorship decisions more quickly and intelligently by objectively assessing where value lies in sports marketing through the application of in-depth data analysis, social media monitoring, and consumer insights.

“The industry is amid a rebound from the challenging pandemic environment which has magnified the value exchange between brands and properties, spurring more questions than answers,” said Adam Mitchell, chief executive at SponsorPulse.

“The importance of leveraging transparent and consistent data sources that provide context on the size and impact of sponsorship opportunities is equally valuable for brands and properties to ensure they’re identifying and investing in the right places at the right time.

“The 50 Most Marketable Properties list is global. However, when you dig into a specific country, a property’s key demographic of focus, or a brand’s customers or non-customers for that matter, there’s a wealth of insight that can simplify sponsorship decision making. Properties can arm themselves with the right data to highlight the opportunity and audience they offer, and brands can scenario plan and validate investment decisions.”

Paul Guest, SportsPro’s commercial director, added: “Consumer behaviour and the purchasing considerations of sports fans have changed permanently due to the pandemic. As such, brands and properties alike are scrutinising the value of all aspects of their partnerships more so than ever,” said Paul Guest, SportsPro’s commercial director.

“Based upon surveys of more than 360,000 people over the past 12 months, the insight SponsorPulse has provided ensures this year’s 50 Most Marketable Properties is the transparent benchmark sponsorship stakeholders are craving.

“However, the data also shows that many of those stakeholders have either misunderstood or misrepresented the value of their partnerships. The Opportunity Score that drives the ranking is a universal currency providing a level playing field for brands and properties to develop their partnerships.”

To view the full list of the World’s 50 Most Marketable Properties powered by SponsorPulse, head over to SportsPro’s dedicated 50MM content hub and join in the conversation on social media using #SP50MM.

World’s 50 Most Marketable Properties powered by SponsorPulse 2021 – the top ten:

1 – Fifa World Cup
2 – Summer Olympic Games
3 – NBA
4 – Real Madrid
5 – Barcelona
6 – Uefa Champions League
7 – Uefa European Championship
8 – Liverpool FC
9 – Premier League
10 – Manchester United

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