Resources: Motorsport sponsorship

Articles, in-depth analyses and research materials on the world of motorsport sponsorship and partnerships in racing.

Motorsport sponsorship has always been front and center at RTR Sports Marketing. As a sponsorship agency focused on tier-one motorsport series we help brands, rights holders and companies leverage the global motorsport phenomenon via the development of strategic partnerships.

It’s a fascinating, rich and nuanced world. Fast-paced, rapidly-evolving, extremely exciting and action-packed, Formula 1, MotoGP, Formula E and the other top series in two and four-wheel racing stand among the most popular and most fascinating sports on the planet.

For sponsors, these series unlock an impressive array of benefits to help them both with their commercial and marketing objectives. While worldwide visibility allows for top-shelf brand awareness, an endless list of marketing tools helps above-the-line and below-the-line communication opportunities. From social media growth to Business-to-Business connections, from exclusive hospitality packages to unique events and appearances, motorsport sponsorship truly has it all.

RTR Sports has been a leading independent marketing agency since 1995. In this page, we want to share with you some of our top blog posts, articles and research on the topic we love the most: motorsport partnerships and sponsorships. Our aim is to help professionals, rights holders and sports properties building a deeper knowledge of this field, in the firm belief that only by sharing what we know we’ll help build a better sports marketing landscape for everyone.


How sponsorship is changing in motorsport: the 4 eras of sponsorship

Sports sponsorship, and especially motorsports sponsorship, is a flexible, three-dimensional marketing tool, whose role over the years has changed profoundly as the market, consumer and regulatory changes. From the early years based on pure visibility to the present days of the expansion of decentralized finance, sponsorships and partnerships have evolved tremendously. Telling the story means telling the story of the evolution of sports marketing as a whole, but also, and more importantly, predicting its upcoming trajectories and the future ahead.

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Web 3.0 and Formula 1 sponsorship: how and why their world have collided

In 2021, popular cryptocurrency exchange platform, became an official partner of Formula 1 in a reported $100 Million deal. This highlights that the link between Web3 and motorsport is stronger than ever before. When you consider this and the fact that 10 of the 10 F1 teams are sponsored by a Web3 company, it’s clear that the window for other companies to follow suit is well and truly open.

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What is a Title sponsor?

A title sponsor (also sometimes known as a “naming sponsor”, “gold sponsor” or “worldwide sponsor”) is the most important type of sponsorship for sports team – excluding maybe they’re the kit supplier. Because of the importance of the title sponsor position, brands taking this mantle can benefit from most of the marketing rights linked to the team. The sponsorship naming rights, are for example, the opportunity to use the team’s name and image in any relevant communication and promotional activities. In certain sports, the title sponsor may also have influence upon the name and colours of the teams’ liveries or uniforms. This is common in basketball, MotoGP, F1 and cycling, amongst other sports, but is seen less in football.

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Advantages and disadvantages of sports sponsorship

Sports sponsorship truly is a 360° marketing tool. Your content marketing, digital media, B2B programmes, PR, hospitality opportunities, and many more activities can be based on your partnership with an athlete a team or sports league. Sponsorship can provide a strong increase in brand awareness and better brand positioning: the two combined elements will lead to brand preference and in improved sales. The passion ignited by riders, drivers, athletes, or by teams or any other sportsman in other disciplines, can’t be rivaled. Also, often their audiences and fans have longstanding and deeply-rooted allegiances. If you select carefully a sports team or individual to sponsor that matches your brand’s ethos, you’re well on your way to seeing all the advantages of sponsorship in sport and sponsorship benefits come to fruition.

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The cost of Formula 1 sponsorships

The cost of sponsoring a Formula 1 team can vary greatly depending on the size and involvement of your company. As an example, smaller businesses usually pay $500k – $750K while larger corporations may spend several million dollars per year in support for their F1 sponsorship.  The Formula 1 championship has always been one of most interesting activities for those who study sports marketing and it is also a common case study in the sponsorship world. In fact, it is from Formula 1 that the concept of modern sport sponsorship developed, and it is here that we can still find the most surprising advancements of the discipline.

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Sponsoring a team, an athlete, an event: what’s the difference?

Deciding where to invest your money as a sports sponsor is a tough task, with decisions to be made over individual athletes, sports teams/clubs and championships right from the start – before you even get into the nitty-gritty of kit, tech, restaurant deals, or other potentially lucrative services. Choosing where to place your bets is complex, with factors including timescales, budgets, and objectives to consider too. So, with all these factors weighed up, is it more beneficial to sponsor an athlete or a championship? What about one tournament, or a particular team? And where should your branding physically appear, to ensure it gets seen by as many eyes as possible?

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The difference between main sponsor, title sponsor and official sponsorship

Main SponsorTop SponsorTitle SponsorOfficial SponsorFront SponsorMinor Sponsor: these are all types of sponsorship that fill up the Internet (and the newspapers), but often risk to lead astray first-time novices in the world of sports sponsorships or the most curious fans. Let’s clear all doubts having a look at the definition of these terms, which are not that mysterious after all.  The names of the different sponsorship types or levels, to be more precise, are left to the imagination of those who prepare the sponsorship packages (the set of rights that the sponsor buys from a team or a club).

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5 benefits of sport sponsorship in the digital age

Sport sponsorship and sports marketing are extremely efficient tools to improve your brand’s digital strategy and online engagement. Here are five reasons why you should use sports to boost your 2.0 presence. In a world that’s increasingly digital-first, brands are struggling to find ways to stand out from the clutter. But while marketers are quickly lured by the immense power of social media and content marketing, few are aware of the challenges and competitions they will have to face once they’ve embarked for their bit-sized quest. 

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