In a bid to transform public perception of e-cigarettes, Totally Wicked shoot and score a prominent partnership with adored English football team, Blackburn Rovers.
It seems like a lifetime ago that sport sponsorships were an enduring and efficient method of indirect advertising for big tobacco, despite only being fully and internationally banned in 2005.
Since then, a gradual influx in partnerships between sport teams and vaping brands have been filtering into mainstream media, encouraging a shift in the way sports fans view e-cigarettes.
Without further ado, let’s get into the most exciting collaborations from the past and present, starting with the renewed partnership between Blackburn Rovers and premier vaping retailer, Totally Wicked.
The partnership is entering its sixth season and marks the third season of Totally Wicked as the front of shirt sponsor, advertising their emblem in support of the Riversiders.
Both brands have a shared locality for Blackburn, and a deep-rooted sense of pride for their local community, with the Totally Wicked headquarters being a stone’s throw from the football stadium.
Totally Wicked Chairman and Rovers supporter, Fraser Cropper said: “As a fan of Blackburn Rovers since childhood, I am thrilled to see our partnership continue.
Totally Wicked and Blackburn Rovers share a rich history. “We are proud to have our name on the front of the team’s shirts once again. It is a testament to our commitment to the club.”
Steve Waggott, Rovers CEO, shares in Cropper’s sentiments, saying: “It’s great that two of the town’s biggest brands will once again sit side-by-side each other during the upcoming campaign.
“It is vitally important to have strong links with the local business community and this latest agreement enhances the relationship even further.”
The brands have a shared focus on sustainability, with Totally Wicked having made significant investments in Veolia’s nationwide recycling scheme to mitigate the environmental impact of disposables.
It seems only right that the Blackburn Rover’s shirts, proudly displaying the Totally Wicked logo, are made entirely of recycled materials in a plea to reduce the football teams carbon footprint.
With both brands having a strong moral compass and striving for a brighter future, any speculation that vape brands have merely replaced big tobacco in sport advertising is dismissed.
The misunderstanding is discredited even further when faced with the fact that cigarette brands made deals with the irrefutable intent to profit from addiction with no regard for the consequences.
An unscrupulous way of making money that failed to account for the amount of influence sport teams have on their fans, while also dragging vape companies through the dirt without good reason.
At the very heart of the Blackburn Rovers and Totally Wicked partnership is a resolution to encourage healthier alternatives and open a dialogue on responsible and informed decisions about harm reduction tools.
A healthier generation of sport enthusiasts will be curated as a result, eradicating any resemblance to the unhealthy tobacco partnerships which only existed as a steady stream of revenue for sport teams.
The partnership with Blackburn Rovers is not the first time Totally Wicked have demonstrated that sport and vape collaborations work, with their alliance with St Helens R.F.C. still going strong.
The rugby club bestowed Totally Wicked with the principal naming rights for their stadium back in 2016, an honour which has now been extended until the end of 2025.
With the grounds retaining the ‘Totally Wicked Stadium’ name, it comes as no surprise that the vape retailer will also preserve sponsorship of the North Stand and advertising on the home and away kits.
The sponsorship has been going strong for over ten years now, with both the men’s and women’s teams adorning the Totally Wicked logo since 2014…two years before the stadium name was changed.
The Chief Executive of St Helens said: “Totally Wicked has been a loyal and valuable supporter and sponsor of Saints for over a decade now and our partnership has gone from strength to strength.”