Sponsorships are a common partnership between two entities where both sides exchange something for each other’s benefit. It seems simple, but is it worthwhile?
To find the answer to that question, we must define what sponsorships mean when it comes to marketing.
When a business or organization becomes a sponsor – some common examples include things like a youth sports team, adult softball team, motorsports, individuals, or events – they’re essentially helping people achieve something while generating awareness for themselves.
What Are Sponsorships and How Do They Work?
Like most things in marketing, the success of sponsorships depends upon relationships.
The goal behind this strategy is to develop a program or campaign that is mutually beneficial.
Typically, the sponsoring company provides money, personnel, or other resources to a team, organization, individual, or event to help them reach a certain goal. In exchange, the company receives a set amount of promotion, brand awareness, or even direct referrals, usually across multiple channels – depending on how the program is set up.
There are also occasions where a sponsoring company can represent both an individual and a team, as seen in motorsports. This unique partnership enables a unique opportunity for cross-brand product awareness, as the company can benefit from exposure through the driver(s), vehicle(s), sanctioning body and individual events all at once.
Typical Sponsorship Types
Sponsorship strategies can come in many shapes and sizes. Choosing the right one depends on your company, the sponsored party’s goal(s) and the mutual agreement between all involved. The most common types of sponsorship include:
Media – The company receives advertising placements or on-air time for events or shows.
In-kind – In this format, services or resources are provided for free as part of assistance and being included in the campaign. This is common in cause marketing and sponsorships for charities, philanthropies, or donations.
Financial – This is where companies donate financial assets directly to a team or organization in exchange for advertising or mentions. Financial sponsorships are often used in virtually every level of motorsports, athletics and local or regional events such as concerts, festivals, farmer’s markets, art shows and more.
So, Are They Worth It?
The type and level of sponsorship will depend on your business, who or what is seeking sponsors, and if it aligns with all parties’ goals and values.
But generally, the answer is yep, you bet!
The resources provided to the team/organization/event help get the ball rolling while providing good exposure for the sponsoring company. Depending on the scope of the project, varying levels of cross-promotion can occur on websites, social media, print collateral, apparel and more.
It’s usually a good trade. In fact, when executed correctly, it’s a strong win-win for all involved.
Think sponsorships may be right for your company? Not sure how to get started? For questions or insights into whether sponsorships may work well for you, give us a shout, we’ll be glad to help!