I’m often pretty harsh with the UFC for their abysmal pay rate for fighters. On one hand I don’t want pay to get out of hand like it has in boxing, but on the other hand I don’t think anyone fighting in the UFC should have to work a second job to break 30k a year after fighting expenses. Most people see the UFC raking in millions at the gates and 20+ millions through pay per view and they wonder where the fuck all that money is going. Well, not all of it is going into Zuffa’s pockets. A lot of it is being put back into promoting the sport and the UFC as a brand:
Billings for the account have been estimated in the $20 million range, contingent on the brand campaign launching–a significant upgrade from the $2.8 million UFC spent a year ago in measured media, according to TNS Media Intelligence.
That might seem like a lot of money at first, but I’ve got my doubts about those figures. ‘Measured media’ includes all television, radio and print ads. If the UFC managed to do what it did in 2006 on 2.8 million, that’s pretty fucking impressive. Even 20 million seems low when you consider the money they’ve spent on marketing just in the UK:
Fertitta said the company is spending $4.5 million to market the UFC brand in the U.K. alone. And that doesn’t include the $1.4 million the UFC spent to market Saturday’s event.
The UFC is also dropping some decent coin in Mexico, trying to chip away at the stranglehold boxing has on the region. There’s also retard talk about an event in Europe, and possibly even the wilderness of Canadia. No word yet on if that event will be held in a giant igloo or beaver dam.
Overall, I’d say it’s a pretty good decision to pour money into the sport … something boxing hasn’t done and is paying the price for now. People like to think mixed martial arts is here to stay, but I wouldn’t be so sure. If it goes down I’ll go back to being that creepy guy who blogs about Gilmore Girls. So I’m glad the UFC has the foresight to be putting a good chunk of the cash they’re making into locking the sport into the mainstream mind. Although how about paying these fighter guys a little bit more too, huh?