Athlete sponsorship is a partnership between a company and an athlete. This is a win-win collaboration – the main purpose of this kind of association for an athlete is to find founds and the aim of the sponsor is to generate brand awareness and customer loyalty.
Why Sponsor an Athlete?
There are many reasons why companies enter the athlete sponsorship marketplace: increase sales, develop customer loyalty, heighten brand awareness, develop new markets, develop business-to-business relationships, launch new products, broaden customer base, develop community relations and change or revitalise brand image.
There is a strong engagement with sports. Sports event are one the most popular event around the world. 85% of internet users say they regularly watch at least one sport online or on TV.
Football is the most frequently watched sports around the world. Among the sporting leagues and events globally, the FIFA World Cup has the biggest reach, drawing in over half of internet users around the world as viewers. The only real challenger to football competitions are the Olympic Games. Both the Summer and Winter Games claim a spot in the top three most-watched global sports.
Sport has gone from a passive spectator sport to a participative one – fans want to be closer to the athletes and to see the most revealing camera angles. Sponsoring an athlete can be one way to appeal to fans in this way and an deepen relationships far beyond a logo impression: customer loyalty.
Women Athlete Sponsorship
Women athlete sponsorship constitutes an opportunity for smaller and emerging brands to make meaningful connections with consumers. As more viewers are drawn to women’s sports, a growing number of sponsors are stepping up.
Read more about Women Sponsorship:
Athlete Sponsorship: Benefits & Risks
Sponsoring an athlete can allow you to benefit from his influence especially when his popularity is at its highest. It allows you to benefit from the values it embodies with the public and if successful, your visibility can be multiplied.
On the other hand, when an athlete in an individual sport becomes embroiled in a scandal (eg, Tiger Woods in golf, Lance Armstrong in cycling), the brand can be impacted. Thus, athlete sponsorship can be risky as the focus of sponsorship activities because while association with a celebrity star or a winning team may enhance consumer purchase intention, the opposite may also be true.
Read more about sport sponsorship: