The Kings League has become one of the phenomena with the greatest media impact this year. The competition is halfway between entertainment and sport. It is organised by Kosmos -Gerard Piqué’s company- and features some of the most important content creators on the digital scene: Ibai Llanos, TheGrefg and DjMaRiiO. Sports stars such as Iker Casillas and Kun Agüero are also part of the teams.
Basically, it consists of a football league with 12 teams, each chaired by a streamer or ex-footballer. The matches are played on Sundays and the competition will last until the end of March. All matches are streamed on the Kings League Twitch channel.
Despite being something completely new, major brands have decided to sponsor the competition. Some of them with hardly any experience in sports sponsorship. This is the case of Infojobs, which lends its name to the competition (naming) as the main sponsor. Companies such as Grefusa, Cupra, Spotify, Simyo, Adidas and Mahou, among others, have also invested in the competition.
All these brands are achieving a return that they probably did not suspect. The main factor in a company’s decision to sponsor an event is usually brand visibility. By this indicator, the sponsorship of the Kings League is an absolute success.
Not surprisingly, the first day – held on 1 January – reached 800,000 devices. Each week this figure has been surpassed. On the third week, it reached a peak of 1.4 million connected devices. In January alone, the Kings League had 238 million views on TikTok, far higher than other mainstream competitions. LaLiga, for example, reached 35 million. And in the same month it was the Twitch account with the highest average number of viewers worldwide.
This superiority in viewership is also backed up by social networks. According to a study by Samy Alliance, the third matchday of the competition had more than 52,000 mentions on these platforms, compared to 42,500 for the Super Cup, held at the same time.
The Kings League has surpassed traditional football competitions in terms of views on TikTok and Twitch.
Precisely, the rigorousness of the data is one of the great advantages of this sponsorship. The brands that lend their support know exactly and in real time what the impact of their investment is being. Something that is not possible in other types of more conventional sponsorships, in which measurement is a handicap because it is still in the realm of estimates.
In addition to reaching a large audience and having rigorous statistics, sponsors value the fact that the Kings League mainly attracts a young audience, between 18 and 24 years of age, compared to traditional football, which attracts an older target. In this regard, Amaia Álvarez, country manager at Samy Alliance, argues that “the entertainment patterns of football do not always fit with younger audiences, who are looking for shorter, more dynamic, participatory formats, with peaks of tension and that reach all networks. The Kings League represents a disruption to the status quo of an established product with over 120 years of history”.
Attracting young audiences is precisely one of the main desires of brands, as it is not easy to make an impact on them, as they are not a captive audience, as is the case with older targets.
Attracting large audiences, impacting younger targets and having rigorous statistics is proving to be a magnet for brands.
With all these advantages, Nilton Navarro, Brand Manager at Infojobs, says that the Kings League “is a great project. We knew it would lead the new era of digital entertainment. As a leading employment platform, we always like to be involved in groundbreaking projects. We are excited,” he says.
Infojobs is the main sponsor of the competition. At the moment, they have signed a one-year deal with the Kings League. In return for their investment, they lend their name to the competition and their brand name appears on the shirts of all 12 teams. In addition, the sponsorship also includes the publication of job offers associated with the competition. Through Infojobs, offers have been activated, for example, to look for players for the Queens League, the women’s version of the competition that will start in May.
Infojobs also sees as an unexpected advantage the impact that the competition has generated outside Spain, especially in Latin America, but also in other European countries.
Another of the most relevant sponsors is Grefusa, a company that decided to join the project at the end of 2022, when the initiative was presented to them. “We were convinced by the tournament format, the idea, the freshness and the execution plan, as well as the people involved in the championship, which from the very first moment ensured a great impact”, says Rafael Gandía, Marketing Director of Grefusa.
With its sponsorship, Grefusa is present in the equipment of the referees, as well as in the goal area. They also sponsor each goal of the match and the summary with the ‘golazos’ of the day with animations by Grefusito. In addition, the commentators have Gublins, Papa Delta and Pipas Grefusa Tijuana, which means that during the broadcast there is not only the presence of their logo, but the spectators can see the streamers consuming and interacting with their products.
The company’s marketing director says the audience levels achieved so far are “exceeding our expectations”. But in addition to reaching a lot of people, above all they value the fact that they are managing to “relate our product to a very young audience, associating it with moments of good vibes, leisure and fun, which is key for Grefusa”.
Thanks to this success, McDonald’s, a major brand, has joined as a sponsor with the competition already underway. This company, through its McDelivery service, will carry out different actions on each day of the Kings League. Natalia Echeverria, Chief Marketing & Digital Officer of McDonalds Spain, maintains that “at this time brands must be increasingly connected to the needs of their consumers, offering content adapted to their interests. For this reason, at McDonald’s we want to offer moments of entertainment and fun to all those who enjoy innovative initiatives such as the Kings League”.
For Miguel Ángel Rodríguez, communications expert and CEO of the 3AW agency, “the Kings League could be the leader of a digital entertainment revolution. The success of this new format lies in how it attracts the public, brands and traditional media through innovation and freedom of content creation, and many other companies may rely on this formula to create new communicative proposals”.