Thursday 22 November 2012

Creeping capitalism - branding the Coli

If you are one of those people who gets annoyed (as I do) by the names of places being used as extended advertising (e.g. the O2 Arena) then the news from the London Coliseum will not please. ENO are re-evaluating their sponsorship and the naming rights to the London Coliseum are potentially available. This is a practice common in football stadiums, but frankly I would be sad if we had to extend it to theatres and the like, even though it could bring in potential revenue. What's in a name, is it worth having the London Coliseum branded if the money brought us, say, a new Ring Cycle?

The naming could also bring in potential problems if a change in marketing direction was posited. Currently the ENO are trying to make going to the opera rather less 'posh' (not that I find going to the Coliseum a particularly 'posh' experience and have never felt pressured to dress up). They currently have a sponsorship deal with a champagne producer; just think what it would have done to their dress down initiative if the champagne producer had already bought the naming rights so we had 'Champagne Brand' London Coliseum. Or perhaps they will opt for a brand which looks 'cool' at the moment (with the inevitable that cool will cease at some time).

The possibilities are endless and, frankly, appalling. Lets start a fund to buy the no-name rights!

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