According to an independent poll conducted by Insightrix Research among 2,700 sports fans across Canada, the Habs top all other Canadian professional sports teams in regards to brand strength; the Leafs and Riders come second and third.
For the second year in a row, Insightrix calculated a Sports Brand Equity Index based on five key metrics: first team that comes to mind, respect for the team, as well as perception of the most loyal fans, team popularity and stadium/arena atmosphere. Each of these attributes has an assigned weight based on their impact on the team's brand equity.
In addition this year a predictive element was added to the survey. Not only were fans asked about their personal opinion, but they were also asked to predict the outcome of the survey for each key metric. This gives a more accurate measurement of the brand's strength.
Despite a 48-year Cup drought and not winning any titles in 15 years, the Maple Leafs' brand ranks second overall, although they have lost a bit of ground compared to last year.
"It's amazing to see a team that has not won anything in such a long time come in second across Canada. Winning helps, but it's not the only factor a team's brand should focus on" commented Mario Caceres, Senior Research Executive with Insightrix.
The Riders are a branding phenomenon worth noting. They are ranked number three across all of Canada despite Saskatchewan only accounting for 3% of the nation's overall population.
The study was conducted among 2,700 sports fans, 300 in each of the following cities: Calgary, Edmonton, Hamilton, Montreal, Ottawa, Regina, Toronto, Vancouver, and Winnipeg. Results were weighted to accurately represent the population in each metro area as a percentage of the national population. Teams from all five major leagues (CFL, MLB, MLS, NBA, and NHL) were included.
The survey was fielded between April 21st and May 5th, 2015.
Below is the list of the top 10 teams with the strongest brand equity across the nation. The top of the list remains fairly consistent to last year, with changes occurring further down.
- Montreal Canadiens
- Toronto Maple Leafs
- Saskatchewan Roughriders
- Toronto Blue Jays
- Toronto Raptors
- Winnipeg Jets
- Vancouver Canucks
- Calgary Flames
- Ottawa Senators
- Montreal Alouettes
Insightrix also tested 21 major sponsors of Canadian teams to get a sense of how these brands are perceived by the fan base of the teams they sponsor. Several questions were asked regarding the brands' reputation. Fans were also asked to link sponsors to teams. Tim Hortons, Canadian Tire, and TD Canada Trust are the top three sports sponsor brands in Canada among all tested.
Customized results are available upon request for more details on the team metrics and consumer brands, such as cross-tabs by team, fan type, city, and region.
A detailed summary of the methodology and high level results of the survey can be viewed athttp://insightrix.com/sports-brand-study-canada.