For those familiar with the storied traditions of the Masters, the addition of Mercedes-Benz as one of the tournament’s three global sponsors is very big news. Ever slow to change, (the Masters board of directors being extremely cautious and renowned for putting its traditions and fan base above all else) their partnership with Mercedes-Benz carries with it several grand ramifications, particularly in respect to advertising.
What the Masters Means to Mercedes-Benz
Unlike almost all other golf tournaments, the Masters is committed to a mere handful of sponsors: three global, two international. The purpose of the diminutive number is to guarantee that each sponsor receives the maximum amount of exposure. Loyal to it’s fan base almost to a fault, the Masters’ board of trustees only allows four minutes of commercial advertising per broadcast hour. That means each global sponsor gets about 1 minute and 33 seconds of airtime per hour. The two international sponsors receive no airtime in the United States, but are advertised internationally.
For Mercedes-Benz, who has been an international sponsor for the last eight years, becoming a global sponsor means they are just one of three sponsors that the U.S. Masters audience will see in years to come. Mercedes will use its time to advertise new and used Mercedes on a global scale.
Why the Masters Chose Mercedes
In short, Mercedes-Benz was selected because of its commitment to excellence or, “passion for perfection,” as Dr. Joachim Schmidt, Executive Vice President Mercedes-Benz Cars, Sales and Marketing stated. While Mercedes-Benz products and services speak for themselves (for example, used Mercedes having quite possibly the most comprehensive service and guarantee package on the market today) it is impressive to line up the car company next to the other Masters sponsors: IBM, AT&T, UPS, and Rolex, all companies with long and exceptional histories.
The Masters Board of Directors rarely makes changes (for example, they’ve remained partners with CBS for 60 years), so their decision to bring Mercedes-Benz aboard was undoubtedly taken after very serious consideration. Mercedes-Benz is also renounced for only making the best of business decisions. How else can you explain the fact that a used Mercedes E-Class has the highest residual value of any car mass manufactured in its price range? As such, it’s easy to assume that the business partnership between these two giants within their respective industries will be lucrative.
Mercedes-Benz, a company that came into existence in 1926 with the merger of two automobile companies in southern Germany, has been considered an elite car manufacturer for the better part of its 87 year history. Since its inception in 1934, the Masters has also been world renowned. The pairing of these two almost seems obvious.