Now in its 11th season, the World Series by Renault now enjoys an established reputation, with TV exposure playing a central part in its popularity. Renault Sport Technologies Brand and Media Manager Mélanie Taupin explains the ins and outs of producing coverage of the World Series by Renault.
Mélanie joined Renault after completing her studies, beginning her career with a stint doing communication work for the Industrial Design department, a post that gave her an exciting window on the world. Then came an instructive and informative placement with Renault F1’s communication office, which coincided with Fernando Alonso’s Formula One world championship wins in 2005 and 2006.
From there Mélanie moved on to Renault Sport Technologies to become the project leader for the World Series by Renault, her brief being to organise and promote the event, one that introduced her to TV production.
Her current position of Brand and Media Manager encompasses brand image and visual identity, sponsorship, advertising, customer acquisition, TV production and TV rights management.
The World Series by Renault TV team comprises around 30 people, including the director and 15 or so technicians who have the job of broadcasting races live and setting up all the necessary equipment. Some ten members of the team are responsible for editing and creating the magazines, while another colleague takes care of managing the various contracts signed with broadcasters.
Mélanie’s role as part of the organisation is to safeguard the visibility of the Renault Sport championships and their single seaters, promote partner visibility and consolidate Renault’s brand image in the media.
She has taken a three-step approach to reaching these objectives and ensuring the championships retain their appeal to broadcasters. The first involves enhancing production quality (HD, number of cameras), the second managing the distribution of images (contracts with broadcasters), and the third positioning programmes on the right channels.
It’s a job in which Mélanie has to be responsive, thorough and creative in carrying out her projects. Being a good negotiator is also a useful asset when it comes to thrashing out TV contracts.
The World Series by Renault’s two main TV partners are Eurosport and Motors TV. For Renault Sport the decision to let a general sports TV broadcaster such as Eurosport cover its single-seater series was an important one, as it allows its races to be shown on a channel that airs a wide variety of different sports.
Renault Sport selected motorsports specialist Motors TV as its broadcaster of choice for events featuring the Clio Cup and its successor the Renault Sport R.S. 01. Watched by motorsports experts looking for a specific type of content, Motors TV’s coverage also provides a showcase for drivers, helping them in their bids to find sponsors to fund their drives.
Another partnership came into being a year ago with BT Sport, with the channel offering live and comprehensive coverage of the World Series by Renault for the first time at Silverstone. Renault Sport also took the opportunity to broadcast live coverage of the Silverstone qualifying sessions on Renault Sport’s YouTube channel.
Key TV broadcast stats:
Number of markets around the world: 20
Audience: 55 million viewers per year, 30 percent of them for live coverage and around 25 million via Eurosport.
Broadcast hours: 121 in 2009, 542 in 2014.
Global live sponsor ratio (the number of times partners can be seen on screen in one hour of live racing): increase from 40 percent in 2010 to 117 percent today.