One of the biggest questions bandied about after the UFC announced their historic seven-year, $700 million deal with Fox was whether the partnership could pull in the mega-sponsors. As Leland Rolling explained, "the UFC had already signed major brands such as Harley Davidson and Burger King," but could the allure of a network-giant reel in the advertising kings that flock to sport's grandest stages?
Apparently the answer is a definitive "yes".
According to reports from Adweek, the UFC's network debut was met by an overwhelming response from advertisers looking to hop aboard the oncoming mixed martial arts gravy train.
"We sold out all 15 units in a week," said Todd Siegel, Executive Vice President of Fox Sports Cable Sales. "In fact, we could have sold more units, but people came to us a little late. We had to turn down a couple movie studios as well as an automotive client."
Per the report, a 30-second spot during the UFC on Fox telecast solicited a price tag upwards of $100,000. Evidently, a cost-benefit analysis of the hefty fee was positive enough to garner various major entities such as Anheuser-Busch, Casio, the U.S. Marine Corps, 20th Century Fox and Warner Bros.
While it may only represent the removal of one stumbling block from the road for Zuffa and Fox, the seeming ease of UFC on Fox's marketing triumph bodes well for a partnership still in its infancy. Now let's hope the fight delivers in similar fashion.