Rugby League to overhaul image

The Rugby Football League (RFL) has drafted in Sports Impact to revamp its northern, working-class image as it goes on the hunt for new sponsors. The organisation is seeking to position league rugby as a family friendly, nationwide sport in a major rebranding exercise.

Sports and sponsorship specialist Sports Impact has been hired to promote the RFL’s sponsorship opportunities and raise awareness about the sport among players and potential fans.

The move comes as Tetley prepares to terminate its title sponsorship of the Super League at the end of the current season.

Sports Impact plans to launch a six-month PR campaign based on consumer research among general sports fans and committed Rugby League followers. It will publicise its findings to sports, lifestyle, family, youth, regional and national press, as well as women’s and men’s magazines.

RFL is keen to encourage more teenagers and women to try the sport and is hoping to turn the national team into celebrities.

‘We want to be seen as a national sport,’ said RFL media and public affairs executive John Hastings.

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