Sports fan behavior has changed — permanently. The sponsorship activations that worked last year won’t drive more sponsor demand next month or next year.
Corporate partners want more from the sports properties they’re sponsoring. They want more fan interaction, engagements, impressions and videos, and more specific analytics on how this works to their benefit. Partner sales teams need activations, programs and campaigns that give their corporate partners more value — without adding more work. Working with your social media teams can deliver that extra value and boost results for every partner — to turn those outstanding results into renewals and expansions in the next year.
Your team is most likely hitting the limit on engagement and exposure on your official social media channels. Organic sponsorship activations on TikTok, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter will only stretch so far. To expand your inventory and generate more engagement, leverage the photos and videos captured daily — the ones filling fans’ mobile screens.
The posts your athletes share on their social feeds offer the widespread consumer reach and authentic engagement that property-owned and brand-owned channels can’t match.
Take Sponsorship Activations to the Next Level With Digital Media
Logos, marks and messaging on jerseys and in venues are routinely featured in photos and videos alongside celebrated faces and magic moments. Thousands and even millions more fans beyond stadiums and linear TV screens are seeing and engaging with them.
The beauty of this content is that it lets audiences, sports properties and brands save, share and repost content with these elements for extended and repeat exposure — long past the final game buzzer. Corporate partnership teams are eager to unlock the value of these rich media assets with sponsors.
Yet, the staff at many teams and leagues still struggle with how to integrate short-form digital media opportunities into new sports sponsorship proposals and renewals. Brands are getting impatient. They’ve grown up on social media and seen its impact. They now demand more proven value and ROI than standard metrics like social engagements and views can offer. And they want content they can leverage for their own campaigns.
Proven Tactics To Boost Value for Corporate Sponsors
Greenfly works with leagues and teams of all sizes in all sports to help them maximize social media exposure. We do that by delivering digital media to as many people and groups as possible to share on social. This activity creates a dramatically bigger digital footprint than is possible by posting only to official accounts.
That expanded digital footprint is key to helping sponsor teams boost exposure for corporate partners. It can also support more innovative activations and command higher rates. Expanded reach, increased engagement and more authenticity can drive brand value through the roof.
We’ve assembled a menu of seven ways sports properties can increase the value of their sponsor activations and offer new programs that make corporate partners stand out. One Greenfly customer highlighted is the Premier Lacrosse League, which is scoring big with digital media sponsorship activations.
They’re generating more revenue by enhancing existing brand relationships, extending partner programs in new areas, and building entirely unique programs in multiple ways. And we offer tips on how to frame your digital media sponsorship proposals to garner the most partner investment.
But these ideas aren’t just for top leagues and teams. Sports properties of all sizes are succeeding with these same strategies to scale their offerings.
Deliver Next-Level Sports Sponsorship Activations
Download these tactics and tips — 7 innovative recipes — that will drive more revenue.
Inside the Sponsorship Activations Menu: Key Highlights
- Start with your athletes — these true marketing partners make existing programs bigger.
- Extend partner programs — sell ownership of ongoing and regular moments.
- Build creative sponsor content with fans — they become invested in the output and brand.
- Give sponsors access — let them use media gathered at every match day, practice and event.
Whether you’ve just started selling sponsor activations and programs or are expanding and extending your long-term deals, consider these proven examples of success.
These programs will help you exceed your revenue goals this season and beyond. When you partner with your digital team, we’re sure you’ll find even more ways to craft your own programs.
Please keep us posted on your results!
Athletes Are the Best Partners for Activating Sponsors
One of the first steps you’ll need to take to expand your digital footprint is to activate athletes and share great content with them. Working closely with your digital sports marketing and athlete relations teams is a must here. Some teams have seen their social reach grow by more than 2,000%, and fan engagement shoot up by 200% when athletes start sharing content with sponsor logos.
Athletes are brand storytellers. They will post photos and videos that feature them doing their thing: in games, races, training and practice. When sponsors are featured on uniforms or billboards in the background, that drives sponsor impressions. There are benefits for the athlete, their team, corporate partners and most of all, your fans. It’s a win-win-win!
Here are a few of the other amazing benefits of delivering the right digital media to athletes:
Attract Younger Fans
- Gen Z now follows their favorite influencers and athletes rather than brands or teams.
- Sponsors want to attract and activate Gen Z; players can do that.
Drive Authentic Engagement
- Players and athletes on social media have more organic engagement than brands or teams.
- Fans want to interact directly and share their stories.
- Collectively, players can reach more fans than leagues or teams — sometimes by an order of magnitude.
- Fans can be far beyond normal target markets.
Deliver More Value to Sponsors
- Sponsors benefit from more impressions and engagements (and implicit endorsement) when shared by players.
- Shared media carries implicit athlete endorsements.
There’s no better time to start reimagining how to collaborate with athletes and what fan-property-brand relationships can become.
Want even more sponsor activation ideas to boost short-term revenue? Contact us.