The Sydney Morning Herald today has revealed that the NRL spent $101,095,000 on marketing in 2015. This is obviously a massive blowout and it has seen the NRL start to move people on from its front offices because you simply can not justify spending that much on marketing.
That got me thinking, what could the NRL have got with that money if they didn’t spend it on marketing?
13 M1 Abrams Tanks
Personally I can’t think of any better way to spend the money than to purchase 13 of the greatest fighting machines ever invented.
13 M1 Abrams tanks might not sound like much, but you could lock down pretty much any major city in Australia with these bad boys. Imagine the headlines the NRL would make by doing that!
There’s also the option of rolling these bad boys into Melbourne and just flattening it.
28,884,285 Oral B All Rounder Fresh Clean Tooth Brushes
I’m a kind, caring, person so when I look at having this much money to spend I obviously look at where that money can best be spent to make the world a better place.
While there are 53 million people living in England I think the NRL could do the world a great service by buying 28,884,285 tooth brushes and sending them all to our friends located in the gloomiest part of planet earth.
Good dental hygiene is very important and I believe England would love Australia if we managed to pull together for such a worthwhile, humanitarian event such as this.
561,638 NRL Jerseys
I’m not talking about last years specials here. I’m talking about the current $180 price gouging ones that smart people don’t buy because they don’t want to pay that sort of money to look like a walking billboard for various club sponsors.
If the NRL were to give more than half a million of its own supporters something cool like a footy jersey, I think we would all love it even more. For a while anyway. I’m thinking this type of move would buy the NRL about 3 hours of good will!
With a large chunk of Australia now walking around in current NRL jerseys, surely that would be better for marketing than anything else you could spend that type of money on…right?
37 Dan Carters
Dan Carter is the highest paid Rugby Union player in the world. He earns around $2,700,000 a year playing Rugby Union in France for a club called Racing Métro.
Rugby Union players salaries in Europe tends to be boosted by rich club owners who don’t mind spending a lot of money (Even if their clubs can not afford it) to get players who they like to watch play. That understandable too, after all, it is their money to spend!
Now while Carter earns quite a bit more than the next highest paid player, it is interesting to note that each NRL club could be handed two Dan Carters each and still have a few left over to play in the NSW or QLD Cup!
Now this last one is once again over the top and a bit silly, but think about it for a moment. What type of marketing boost would the NRL get if it had spent even $50,000,000 last year top buy the best Rugby Union players in the world and drafted them into NRL clubs?
This would be an ongoing cost, you wouldn’t want them in the NRL for just a single season, but the publicity this would generate would be unbelievable.
It would have a flow on effect of raising current NRL players salaries, after all, they’d want in on the money being splashed around too, however if the NRL could work out a sustainable figure surely this would be one of the better marketing ideas they could come up with.
The NRL spent way too much money last year on marketing, and while they were doing a bit of catch up because of under-spending over the previous decade, there was still way too much wastage.
It felt like every single week there was some NRL event on that was meant to celebrate some cause or another, all the while taking the focus off the game itself.
It is good that those currently in charge have taken control of the situation and the people seen to be part of a culture there that helped lead this blowout are being shown the door.
It is also good to see the game in such a strong position that it can cop a blowout in costs like this and not miss a beat. It is not too long after that an overspend like this would have put the NRL competition in some very hot water.
Marketing is a funny area to play in these days. You can spend $101,095,000 and get some decent results, but you can also spend no money at all and do a good job too. It just depends on the public and whether or not they are buying into what you are doing.
Last year, for all the money the NRL spent, and all the causes they got behind, crowds didnt really move up or down all that much. To me, that is a marketing failure. Had crowds gone up by 25% the money spent might have been worth it. Unfortunately, they didn’t.
So lets hope the NRL spends less money on functions for people that don’t attend games anyway and more money on promoting Rugby League itself. I reckon that is the way forward for the game.