How does grassroots sport sponsorship increase your brand’s popularity?

Sports sponsorship as an industry is rapidly evolving, yet one thing remains constant – brand awareness is a primary objective for many brands. Sponsors can benefit from the extensive coverage that sport receives in the media, the captivation of large audiences, and opportunities for high brand visibility to drive awareness. While the pandemic changed the previous standard of brand sponsorships within sport, the industry has emerged stronger with even more ways to drive brand awareness.

 

What is sports sponsorship?

Sports sponsorship is when a brand pays in order to be recognised alongside a team or event. Amongst the different types of sports sponsorships, the most common type of sponsorship is of sports kit, alongside stadium advertising. However, sponsorship can also include options such as sponsoring a specific player on a team, or paying for team training locations. 

Sponsorship provides an opportunity for different companies to increase their brand awareness and potentially boost their sales too. Sponsorship creates positive associations between the sports team and the sponsor, which can boost the reputation of the brand amongst sports fans and increase brand loyalty. Sports sponsorship can also help brands to reach new or unexplored audiences, and increase their media visibility.

 

What are the benefits of brand sponsorship in sport?

When traditional forms of advertising are being flipped on their head, brands from a variety of industries are beginning to adapt their marketing and advertising budgets to sports sponsorships. 

There are a variety of benefits to businesses sponsoring a sports team or event, alongside added benefits for the sports team. Let’s look at some of the benefits of sponsoring a sports team.

Digital

When you attach your business name to a sports team, it is going to gain your business more attention online. When audiences may watch a sports team perform, they will see your business name, prompting them to look at your social media, website, and services. With this visible spike in social media and digital traffic, your business should be prepared for what may happen next. 

If your website is well-optimised for web and mobile, you will see that site visitors are more likely to follow you, and more likely to come to your business when they need your services. Make sure your business is ready to capitalise any digital traffic, as the more time your business is displayed as a sponsor, the more traffic you will get. 

Attendance

During sports events, the audience will be aware of sponsors. When a large, international business sponsors a sports team, this will pique interest within the audience, leading to an increase in attendance. The more attendance for the sports event, the more notability your business gets, and the more money the sports team is able to make. Obviously, this is not as large-scale if you are not an international, well-known business, but an increased attendance is still the effect of sponsorship. 

Sales

This is an obvious effect of sports sponsorship, but it is incredibly beneficial for businesses, whether they are local or national. Not only does a sponsorship increase the morale for a sports team, it will cause a spike in sales for the business. When more tickets are bought for the sports event, the sports team will benefit, but so will your business. 

Target Audience

When sponsoring a sports team, you should have a shared interest and motivation with the sports team. Otherwise, your sponsorship will not gain traction, and you will not reach your target audience. For example, as a machinery company, it is unlikely that you would choose to sponsor a junior football team. This is because the team does not have a shared interest in your business, meaning it is unlikely that the audience will, too. 

When accepting a sponsorship with a sports team, your business will have access to your target audience. The sports team will act as the in-between for your target audience and your potential growth and sales. When an audience can see a sponsorship is present, they are more likely to be interested in your services, due to a shared interest in the sports team. 

Advertisement

Finally, another benefit of sports sponsorships is the advertising potential. Essentially, sponsoring a sports team is like free advertisement. As a business, it is likely that you have a pretty high budget for advertising and marketing. When sponsoring a sports team, you can save a lot of money on these advertisement costs. 

When your business name is displayed at a sports event or on a team kit, customers will want to learn more about your business and services. Along with the shared interest in the sports team, sports fans will turn into potential customers, and will be more likely to use your services.

 

Barclays: brand sponsorship in marketing 

Sports sponsorship can be hugely beneficial for many brands. It allows them to generate increased brand awareness and boost their potential for new leads and sales deals, while also increasing engagement between the brand and the sports fans. 

Brand sponsorship of sports teams can result in brands achieving increased levels of engagement with their target audiences, which can begin the journey towards actual sales. Brand awareness is an essential component of a brand’s marketing strategy, and is key whether you are a large or small business. Including sponsorship in marketing strategies is critical for success.

A significant sponsor of women’s football, Barclays, committed to a large investment in the grassroots of sport in 2019. As part of that commitment, they now support the Barclays Girls’ Football School Partnerships (BGFSP) which aims to ensure girls in England have the same level of access to football as their male counterparts in schools by 2024. This has created a positive association between fans and the Barclays brand, stemming directly from this sporting environment. Brand awareness and loyalty in one!  

Sponsorship is complex, but today there are increased promotional opportunities in sport and it is a valuable sector to get involved in if you are looking to increase your brand’s popularity. It’s important to work with professionals, like Gift of Kit, who can offer you the best advice based on a wealth of experience. We’re here to help you navigate the world of sponsorship – if you’d like to sponsor a grassroots sports team, we’re here to help.

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Whether you’re a club searching for support, or a business looking to access the power of grassroots sport, we want to hear from you.