With the FIFA World Cup fast approaching Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo has been deemed the most marketable football (soccer) player in the world, according to global sports research company, Repucom.
“Ronaldo is an endorser’s dream,” Paul Smith, Australian founder and CEO of Repucom, said.
“His value is as important to the teams he plays for as they are for the companies that endorse him. Global awareness of Ronaldo is what drives his commercial power and with over 82 million Facebook likes and 26 million Twitter followers, he is also one of the most liked in the business.”
Around the world 83.9% of people know of the Portuguese soccer star, with 82.5% believing he reflects today’s society trends, earning him the title of best ‘trend setter’ in soccer.
As a sign of his marketability more than one million Real Madrid shirts with his name printed on the back were sold in 2013.
Sliding in just behind Ronaldo as the second most marketable player is Argentina’s Lionel Messi with a global awareness score of 76.07% and a DBI score 75.87.
(FYI: Rupucom’s DBI Celebrity score measures the perception of 13-69 year olds in 13 markets around the world with views of more than 1.5 billion people. The DBI score defines a celebrity’s marketability by evaluating eight contributing attributes including the awareness, appeal, breakthrough, trendsetter influence, trust, endorsement and aspiration of and for the celebrity.)
Taking up third place is Spain’s Gerard Piqué with Spain’s Fernando Torres in fourth place.
Even though Torres has a slightly higher global awareness score than Piqué, Piqué has more followers on Twitter and Facebook, leaving him with a DBI score of 62.90 where Torres’ is 62.69.
The table below, provided by Repucom, outlines the top ten most marketable players. Sadly no Aussie players can be found in the mix, however Spain holds a decent share of leaderboard.
“With just over two weeks to go before the 2014 FIFA World Cup kicks off, the world’s gaze is firmly on the competing teams and players,” Smith said.
“The World Cup is the most watched sporting event in the world and as such, big brands, official partners or otherwise, will and are using its global appeal to drive sales.
“Endorsements of celebrities, and in this case footballers, have an incredibly powerful way of doing just that creating an emotional connection with a brand. The star can raise awareness and create a buzz for brands and products at a time when breaking through the marketing clutter that surrounds such huge events is critical for commercial success.”
Even though Brand Finance’s recent look at the most valuable soccer brands for the year saw Germany’s FC Bayern Munchen take out the top spot, no German players were found in the top ten most marketable players.
Manchester United slipped down to third place with Real Madrid sneaking up into second, according to the report from the brand valuation and strategy consultancy company.
Check out all the info of the report, including which teams went up and down in brand value, by clicking here.