The Untapped Potential of Sports Marketing
The Untapped Potential of Sports Marketing
Sports marketing trends change according to the year we are in. The trends that were in use ten years ago may not be the ones we are using today, because humans are fickle and their taste changes very often.

The Untapped Potential of Sports Marketing

What is a sport? Or what defines a Sport? The council of Europe charter defines it as "Sport means all forms of physical activity, which through casual or organized participation, aim at expressing or improving physical fitness and mental well-being, forming social relationships or obtaining results in competition at all levels". (BBC)

The word sport originates from the Old French word desport, which means ‘meaning leisure’ and the oldest translation in English comes from 1300 meaning anything humans find amusing or entertaining.


Why are sports so popular?

People like sports because like movies and music, it is a form of entertainment and that helps people escape the troubles of life. It gives them something freeing to think about. People like sports because it provides a sense of belonging, a bond with the rest of the world.


What is Sports Marketing?

Sports marketing is a subdivision of marketing that focuses both on the promotion of sports and teams and other products and services through sporting events and sports teams.

The first definition of sports marketing is found in Mullin, Hurdy & Sutton in their famous book titled Sports Marketing (2014). The authors describe sports marketing as a rational, coherent system that helps link sport consumers with sports products.

Players are often involved as they use a particular brand and thus increases the brand value because there are high chances that fans of the player will purchase the product.


Why do we need Sports Marketing?

From the company’s Point of view, Sports Marketing allows companies to promote directly to a primary target market, an audience, and stand out from the clutter of traditional advertising. Sports Marketing allows companies to engage consumers on their level, as a lot of sports events are conducted live.

Sports Marketing appeals to sponsors because they see an absolute return on their investment.

From a sports player’s point of view, the existence of Sports Marketing increases their brand value as a person. The need for high Sports marketing means, more people are interested, which in turn means more revenue for everyone involved behind the scenes.


Sports Marketing Strategy

Strategic sport marketing is an approach to sports marketing where organizations engage in careful planning before implementing marketing activities designed to meet organizational goals. (pdf)


Good strategies give good results, the better the results the more people will be willing to invest in the sports field, increasing its brand value. This cycle continues beneficial to all the parties involved.


Examples of Good Sports Marketing Strategies


  1. One cannot talk about the world of sports marketing without talking about the largest sportswear brand in the world, NIKE


Nike is known for many things – most recently it has been making news for its attempt to break the 2-hour barrier for the marathon.


The founder of Apple.Inc said and quote “Nike sells a commodity, they sell shoes. And yet when you think of Nike you feel something different than a shoe company. In their ads, as you know, they don’t ever talk about the product, they don’t ever talk about their air soles, how they’re better than Reebok’s air soles. What’s Nike do in its advertising? They honor great athletes and they honor great athletics. That is what they are about.”


This is arguably one of the best strategies in the sports marketing field. Great athletes they have used as their brand ambassador include the world-famous Neymar junior, a very well-known football star, also Tennis Star Serena Williams is an ambassador.


  1. Adidas on the other hand does killer collaborations with artists, which helps bring in customers from different entertainment industries into the same shop. Examples include the current Adidas by Stella McCartney, the Y-3 product line with Japanese designer Yohji Yamamoto, and Adidas x Jeremy Scott.



Impact of Sports marketing

 Sports Marketing and Brand Awareness hand in hand.


Associating your business with a sports team or an athlete is a powerful way to create brand awareness for your business. It is not just a one-time thing, as you can tie your business to a sports team via advertising on sports radio, creating promotions for when the team wins, or co-branded giveaways of promotional items.

The role of brand awareness in building brand equity depends on the strength of the brand's presence in consumers' minds, brands that have been around for longer tend to have very faithful customers.

Research has shown that a high level of brand awareness helps increase brand choice, produce greater consumer loyalty, and, therefore, improve brand equity.

The number of loyal customers increases and that gives the company a definite profit throughout the year. The company also comes up with various products and offers to keep their customers happy. As mentioned above, the more customers sports bring, the more companies are ready to invest in the sports field, the growth graph helps everyone involved.


Sports marketing Trends

Sports marketing trends change according to the year we are in. The trends that were in use ten years ago may not be the ones we are using today, because humans are fickle and their taste changes very often. For example, the pandemic changed the approach of promoting sports from stadiums to live shows on platforms, the biggest example would be the Olympics which was conducted online cause there was no audience.


This involves methods such as,


  1. OTT (Over the Top) Content: airing live events on platforms such as Netflix, Amazon Prime… etc has become a good source of income ever since the pandemic happened and all of us are confined in our homes.
  2. Also now there has been a new space specifically for women, sports used to be a male-dominated field but now it is changing. 

These are only one of the major trends of Sports marketing. (link)

Sports Media

The sports media grows hand in with the growth of sports marketing. The more the need to market sports, the more we are in need of the sports media. The graph is simple and dependent on each other. Sports media helps with marketing also, the need goes both ways.

This article has only scratched the surface of the potential Sports marketing has, after all the industry has grown that sports are not just about the game anymore. There is more for you to learn, hope this was enough for you to know how the sports marketing world works on the surface. See you next time. For more information visit at