With just 19 weeks until Ireland’s first game against Scotland at the 2019 Rugby World Cup in the International Stadium in Yokohama, an indication of the large footprint of early public interest in the quadrennial tournament is evidenced in the 56% of adults in Ireland already expressing interest in the landmark event, according to new research from sponsorship experts ONSIDE.

And as 3 in 10 Irish adults are already revealing high levels of anticipation for the tournament in Japan, the new research flags that for sponsors looking to stand-out around the event, their brands will need to really up their activation game plans.  John Trainor, CEO of ONSIDE, notes that “our most recent research found 57% of Irish adults are asking for sponsors to go beyond putting their name on something and to interact with fans in more creative ways.  Now, more than ever, fans want sponsors to help them experience real, rather than digital, life experiences through their sponsorships, and sponsors that really understand this will get an advantage in this increasingly competitive space, particularly those reaching out to young adults”.

ONSIDE’s quarterly sponsorship monitor saw Six Nations’ new sponsors Guinness and Irish Rugby Team main sponsors Vodafone top the poll of Ireland’s most admired sports sponsors in Q1 2019, while IRFU partners Aldi also showed significant gains in the latest market overview.

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The new research comes on foot of the ONSIDE team announcing the appointment of Irish Rugby Captain Rory Best, as a senior consultant on its sports advisory panel, alongside GAA star Joe Canning and Jon Long, former head of strategy at the International Cricket Council.

The advisory role will see Rory Best, who recently announced his plans to retire from rugby post this year’s Rugby World Cup, link up with the leading sponsorship and research experts, as part of plans to uncover breakthrough new insights around how sports and sponsorships impact sponsors businesses and brands and those of sports organisations and personalities.

Rory Best said:

"As I look ahead to my time post playing rugby for Ireland and Ulster, I’m extremely excited to get behind the ONSIDE team to help their strong ambition to develop world class solutions in sports intelligence. ONSIDE has already built a strong reputation for itself in the sponsorship game and I can identify with how this unique data driven approach can play an important part in the future of sports business in the decade to come.”


 ONSIDE Founder John Trainor, added:

“We are delighted to welcome Rory as a strategic advisor at ONSIDE.  His perspectives in particular in Rugby and Leadership are exceptional, and he will be an important part of the expert advisory team being built at ONSIDE to make game changing impacts on the outcomes of our client’s strategies and investments.”