Specifically for the students, graduates and partners of "Sport Industry Management" program Business School RMA organizes international programs intended for learning the world management experiences of sports organizations and professional clubs. You can read about internships on this page.
Marketing Strategy in Football – Experience of Spain
2-13 january, 2011. During an extensive program in Spain our students got to visit the six most powerful Spanish clubs FC Barcelona, Espanyol, Villarreal, Valencia, Real Madrid and Atletico de Madrid- as well as the Spanish Federation, where they got a chance of meeting Spanish manager who took Spain to the World Cup title, Vicente del Bosque, and Spain's La Liga.
The trip started in Barcelona on Sunday, January 2. Just off the plane, we took a bus driven by FC Barcelona’s official driver to the Camp Nou, where Barcelona defeated Levante, 2-1. The following day, our students got lectures from Barça’s head of international public relations Chemi Terés, who explained the club’s approach with international media and attended the press conference held by midfielder Sergio Busquets. Then, our group had pictures taken with Busquets and star forward David Villa. In the afternoon the students visited Barcelona’s museum, megastore and did the stadium tour. Before that, the man who started the megastore Josep Maria Mesegue gave a lecture about Bar?a’s worldwide merchandise sales.
The following day we stayed in the morning at FC Barcelona facilities, visiting the club’s academy, La Masia, where head of the academy Carles Folguera explained how the kids were treated and we got the chance of seeing pictures of very young Carles Puyol and Andres Iniesta among others. Then, we got a lecture from head of the FC Barcelona International Schools, Xevi Merce and former player Julio Alberto (played in the 1986 World Cup) about the project to grow Bar?a’s schools around the world. In the afternoon we had a lecture by sports analyst Marcos Garcia about the social impact the rivalry between FC Barcelona and Real Madrid has and we were presented the study Football Transfer Review elaborated by the firm Prime Time Sport.
Wednesday was dedicated to Espanyol. We visited the club’s brad new stadium, including going down to the team’s main locker room. Then, we got a lecture by Espanyol’s head of marketing Raul Cipr?s. Marketing manager Xavi Gim?nez took us to the club’s Sporting City where we saw the end of practice and got to meet some players. At the end, took the pitch for an interesting match played amongst them at Espanyol’s facilities.
On Thursday we got on the bus and travelled to Villarreal: a tiny city (population is only 50,000) that has one of the strongest football clubs in Spain. Currently, Villarreal is third in La Liga standings and is playing beautiful football. Journalist Chimo Masmano explained to us how Villarreal has got so high in the Spanish rankings and then we saw an incredible Cup game in which Villarreal, "The Yellow Submarine" came back from a 0-2 halftime deficit to defeat Valencia 4-2 and advance to the Cup’s next round. The following day we visited Valencia’s Sporting City where Vicente Cuxart, manager of the facility, showed us around.
On Sunday we took our bus to Madrid and in the afternoon we went to the huge Santiago Bernabeu stadium to see Villarreal again, but this time visiting Real Madrid on a league game. The “Yellow Submarine” played great, going ahead of Real 1-0 and 2-1 in the first half, but Cristiano Ronaldo had an excellent performance, scoring three goals to lead Real Madrid to a 4-2 win.
On Monday we toured Real Madrid. In the morning we went to its new Sporting City, where Alberto Gil, in charge of football development, explained us the philosophy of Real’s Academy. In the afternoon, we visited the museum, Bernabeu’s stadium, the megastore and received a lecture about Real’s international marketing projection.
Tuesday was a busy day. Football experts came to our hotel to give lectures in the morning. We started with agent Santi Castello, who talked about the agent’s life and his relationship with the players and their families. Santi is an agent at IMG the company that represents, amongst other Atletico’s Kun Aguero and Barcelona’s Gerard Piqu?. Spanish television star Jos? Antonio Luque then came to talk about football television rights in Spain and how the money is distributed. Finally Nike’s Guillem Gallego explained how the new Cristiano Ronald’s shoes were launched by the company and showed us great video material produced by Nike.
In the afternoon we visited Atl?tico de Madrid. After seeing the museum and stadium, marketing director Miguel Arjona took us through Atl?tico’s advertising campaigns which have won many awards not only in football, but in Spain’s general television as well.
On Wednesday morning, we went to the Spanish Federation headquarters. After visiting the facility and the museum, Joaquin Maroto, former Real Madrid’s director of communication and a man who worked with Vicente del Bosque for more than five years, explained to us the success of Spain’s national team as well as talking about some anecdotes that he experienced working in Real with stars like Figo, Beckham, Zidane and Ronaldo. After Maroto’s conference, we had the chance of taking some photos and asking some questions to Del Bosque.
To wrap up our trip, we attended in the afternoon La Liga’s offices. The general manager Francisco Roca welcomed us at the room where decisions are taken for Spanish football, having the flags of all the teams at our back. Mr. Roca talked about how television money is distributed. He explained to us La Liga’s security and ticketing programs and gave us some examples of their key sponsorship programs.