Utilizing Digital Advertising for Sports Sponsorships
By: Chris Shreeve, Account Executive
I had the privilege of attending the Intersport Activation Summit at the classy Ritz-Carlton Hotel in San Francisco and it did not disappoint. The attendee list included dozens of professional sports organizations from all of the top leagues, as well as sports marketing specialists from large brands such as American Express, GM, AT&T, Twitter, Yahoo!, and the list goes on. It was incredible to hear some of the success stories from some of the thought leaders in the sports marketing world, but it was even more impressive to hear about the unique ways in which sponsors utilize sports teams to reach their desired audience.
Sports sponsorships are dominated by traditional forms of advertising, but it is those sponsors and teams that leverage digital who are getting ahead of the game. Sports organizations have a very unique and passionate audience, so there is no doubt as to the reason behind the millions of dollars spent on sponsorships packages. In every panel regarding digital advertising in the sports world, someone mentioned the need to have a digital presence since the younger fan is checking scores online and even watching games from their computer or tablet. Sponsors can make use of a very targeted audience segment online and utilize digital advertising to stay top of mind with that younger audience in a way only exclusive sports sponsorships can.
Now, it is not enough to have a digital presence to just have a digital presence. Sports sponsors need to leverage different creative executions and targeting tactics to differentiate your connection to a sports fan. With all of that being said, it must be the sports organizations who convey the importance of digital to their sponsors and build unique sponsorships packages that include digital advertising as an important vehicle to “surround the fan”, rather than a value add. Over time, digital budgets will continue to grow in the sports sponsorship world but it is those organizations and sponsors that will reap the benefits if they get ahead of the game.
Here are some pictures from the event: