Random thoughts on a variety of subjects
by Sam Redman
There has been some recent speculation regarding the licensing away of the naming rights to what is presently known as “Cowboys Stadium.” Corporate sponsors don’t actually line up for these ball park and stadium naming deals, because to get the full value of such a sponsorship they must also purchase air time advertisements during television and radio broadcasts to get the mention of their brand in association with the venue and the event. However, such a deal for Cowboys Stadium might be as much as 300 million dollars for a long term contract, ironically because of the assumed inferred association with the already well known and well regarded name of the “Cowboys” football team. However, it may be a situation of the proverbial, “selling one’s birthright for a bowl of porridge,” the phrase oft used as the universal descriptor of a really bad deal.
What should be obvious is that the most logical sponsor is “The Dallas Cowboys, ” themselves, a brand name that ranks as one of the world’s most famous (for now), in other words, leaving things just as they are. Keeping the name, “Cowboys,” on the stadium protects the brand’s viability and insures its longevity and prominence.
Jerry Jones, the owner of the Dallas Cowboys football franchise, has made a fortune trading on the Cowboys name. A puzzling paradox emerges in giving up the name to the stadium, because one of the reasons he can get other sports events, such as boxing into the arena (or quasi sporting “spectaculars,” like monster truck rallies) is because of the caché of them being held in “Cowboys Stadium,” a structure which is becoming recognized as the eighth wonder of the world and currently being called by the name “Cowboys Stadium” by every announcer without restriction (or the purchase of television advertisements during all of those varying events, from boxing to rodeo to basketball).
It was a genius move from the start when Jones chose to call this world famous landmark, “Cowboys Stadium.” The moment it becomes something like Tostitos Stadium or Pepsi Park, the brand value of the name “Dallas Cowboys” is vastly diminished and it runs a strong risk of losing its international significance and marketing value. Marketing professionals everywhere recognize and respect that the name, “Dallas Cowboys,” is currently a brand as significant as Kleenex or Coca-Cola and its own value as a now traditional (even sentimental) American iconic name should be preserved and regarded as a priceless corporate asset worth protecting (and exploiting).
The cost to the franchise in lost revenue from the sale and licensing of the name on what is now “Cowboys Stadium” realistically could be far more than what would be received in any naming rights deal. Great, memorable and cherished, brand names, which are recognized world-wide, come along but rarely… this one should be ensured its permanence.