Sports Marketing Ideas

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A trash-removal business might consider sponsoring the local team's trash cans as a marketing strategy.
A trash-removal business might consider sponsoring the local team's trash cans as a marketing strategy. (Image: hwahl/iStock/Getty Images)

Sports fans feel passionate about their chosen teams, whether they're showing up at the games, wearing team apparel or watching them on TV. Businesses dream of inspiring that same passion among their customers and may choose to link themselves to the local team or sports facility to do so. Sports teams offer many options for businesses to market themselves, and there's something to fit multiple budgets and price ranges.

Sponsorship Options

For a business, sponsorship opportunities in sports marketing can take many forms, from a patch on a jersey of the local professional soccer team to a banner at a Little League field. Sports teams and facilities usually are willing to work with you to come up with creative ways to fulfill your marketing goals via such sponsorships. A doughnut shop might sponsor a "dunk of the game," with an image of a pastry being dunked into a cup of coffee following a clip of the selected basketball highlight at the arena. A disc golf course might put your logo on the frisbees it sells -- a long-term benefit, as many players use the same discs for years.

Coupons and Deals

Work with a team to provide coupons or offer discounts to fans. This can take the form of an advertisement on the ticket itself or a handout that accompanies tickets sent by mail. You might also have special offers that tie in to team success. For example, offering fans a free taco if the basketball team scores more than 90 points or a free pizza topping for each home run the local minor league baseball team hits in a game can generate fan interest and increased business.

In-Game Promotions

Businesses can leverage the connection with sports teams by branding items to give away at the game, whether it's a promotional item handed out to every fan who enters or a prize to be won while the game's in progress. You can have fans scrambling for the privilege of wearing your logo if it's on the item being shot out of a T-shirt cannon or leaping to catch a plastic football thrown into the stands during a break in the action. Placing your business name and logo on a baseball cap can have an effect long after the game's over if the recipient continues to wear it.

Product Showcases

If you're launching a new product, sports marketing can be a valuable tool to get it before your customers. For example, a shaved ice business with a concession at the local stadium can promote its new flavor during the game and offer free samples to fans in attendance. If your business sells locally produced soda and you're launching a new line, arranging with a team to distribute cans to fans as they leave can get your products in the hands of thirsty patrons willing to give the drinks a chance to quench their thirst.

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