In Sport News, Sport Sponsorship, Sports Marketing

Types of Sponsorship: How many are there?

As a brand that wants to move into the world of sports sponsorship, it’s likely that you have a lot of questions – but don’t worry, because we get asked this a lot and are ready to provide some much-needed answers.

Sports or team sponsorship can reap lots of rewards, but there’s no doubt that there are multiple things to consider. What are the advantages and disadvantages of sports sponsorship? How important is it really? Should you sponsor a specific team? Are there any top sports sponsorship campaigns that you can learn from?

We won’t answer all of this today (although we’ll try to soon!) but will focus on the different types of sponsorship and what it is that they can provide, as well as offering some tips on what you should be thinking about at the next stage of the decision-making process.

types of sports sponsorship

Types of Sponsorship

Breaking it down, there are a few different types of sponsorship that you should know about before you start approaching teams or individuals. Categories of sports sponsorship include, but are not limited to, the following:

To explain this simply, say you’re a small brand that would like to market yourself by being allowed to use the sport team or individual’s name, logo and/or imagery as part of your campaign. In this case, you might want to consider becoming an official partner, rather than a main or title sponsor.

Main or title sponsors might have the most reach in terms of numbers, but maybe you want to target a specific or niche area. If that is the case – for example if you want to reach a community sports demographic, or fans of a local team – you don’t need this far-reaching audience. Your audience might need to be smaller, more specific, and more likely to buy into your brand as it plays directly into their interests or life. Official or technical partnerships can give you this.

What are the advantages of sponsorship?

What are the benefits of this kind of sports sponsorship? Well, as mentioned earlier you may be able to use your partner’s name, imagery etc on your communications. You could utilise this digitally, for example through social media, websites or email, or through merchandise. Alternatively, you could look into sponsoring events that corporate clients or your potential customers might be interested in, for example hospitality.

I’ve picked which types of sponsorship are best – what’s next? 

Now is the time to consider whether a sports team, a championship or an individual is best for you to put your brand behind.

We’ll discuss this question in more detail elsewhere – but for the moment, it’s useful to think of sports as you’d think of a media outlet that you might advertise with, and this means asking a few more questions. Will my potential customers see my brand if I position it here? Will this sportsperson/team/event make its followers more aware of us, leading to familiarity, the development of brand preference – and ultimately the intention to become a customer? Does the team/championship/individual represent our values? Will this sponsorship campaign create an emotional link with the people I want to reach?

These are the next things to think about when moving forward in the sports sponsorship process (Discover more about Sponsorship Activation). To stay up to date with news and for further advice on this subject, remember to keep checking out

Since 1995 RTR Sports Marketing is a leading sponsorship agency with its roots in motorsports, such as MotoGP and Formula 1.

Read more about MotoGP sponsorship costs and get in touch today for a consultancy.

Riccardo Tafà
Riccardo nasce a Gulianova, si laurea in legge all’Università di Bologna e decide di fare altro, dopo un passaggio all’ ISFORP (istituto formazione relazioni pubbliche) di Milano si sposta in Inghilterra. Inizia la sua carriera lavorativa a Londra nelle PR, prima da MSP Communication e poi da Counsel Limited. Successivamente, seguendo la sua insana passione per lo sport, si trasferisce da SDC di Jean Paul Libert ed inizia a lavorare nelle due e nelle 4 ruote, siamo al 1991/1992. Segue un breve passaggio a Monaco, dove affianca il titolare di Pro COM, agenzia di sports marketing fondata da Nelson Piquet. Rientra in Italia e inizia ad operare in prima persona come RTR, prima studio di consulenza e poi società di marketing sportivo. 
Nel lontanissimo 2001 RTR vince il premio ESCA per la realizzazione del miglior progetto di MKTG sportivo in Italia nell’anno 2000. RTR tra l’altro ottiene il maggior punteggio tra tutte le categorie e rappresenta L’Italia nel Contest Europeo Esca. Da quel momento, RTR non parteciperà più ad altri premi nazionali o internazionali. Nel corso degli anni si toglie alcune soddisfazioni e ingoia un sacco di rospi. Ma è ancora qua, scrive in maniera disincantata e semplice, con l’obiettivo di dare consigli pratici (non richiesti) e spunti di riflessione.
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