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In marketing, timing is everything, and there's no better time to capture public attention than during major sporting events. These events are not just competitions; they are cultural phenomena that capture the imagination of millions worldwide. For brands, they represent unparalleled opportunities to be part of the excitement, to ride the wave of heightened emotions, and to engrain themselves in the memories of a captivated audience. Whether it's the adrenaline-fueled atmosphere of the Miami Grand Prix or the heritage-rich grounds of The Masters, each event offers a unique backdrop for brands to amplify their message, connect with passionate fans, and leverage the global spotlight. In this guide, we explore why these events are can't-miss opportunities for brands and how aligning with them can be a game-changer in your marketing strategy.

7 Major Sporting Events in 2024

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Miami Grand Prix (Formula 1) 2024

Starting on May 3rd
Miami Grand Prix Information

The Miami Grand Prix is not just about high-speed races; it's a showcase of luxury, technology, and prestige. For brands, sponsoring athletes at this event means aligning with the epitome of high performance and sophistication. It's an opportunity to engage with an audience that values innovation and luxury, ideal for companies in the tech, automotive, and premium lifestyle sectors.

Racing Drivers on OpenSponsorship

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The 2024 Super Bowl

February 11th
Super Bowl Information

As one of the most watched sporting events globally, the Super Bowl offers brands a chance to reach a vast and diverse audience. Sponsoring athletes during this event means tapping into a cultural phenomenon where the impact goes beyond the game. It's perfect for brands looking to amplify their presence and connect with a wide array of demographics.

NFL Players on OpenSponsorship

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Daytona 500 (NASCAR) 

February 18th
Daytona 500 Information

The Daytona 500 presents a unique blend of speed, excitement, and a deeply loyal fan base. Brands sponsoring athletes here can leverage this loyalty and passion, making it an ideal event for companies aiming to strengthen brand recognition and loyalty, particularly in the automotive and related industries.

Racing Drivers on OpenSponsorship

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March Madness (NCAA Basketball Tournament)

Starting on March 19th
March Madness Information

The NCAA Final Four is a focal point for college sports enthusiasm, attracting a youthful and energetic audience. Sponsoring athletes in this event opens doors to a demographic that is vibrant and engaged, making it a prime opportunity for brands aiming to establish or reinforce a dynamic and youthful image.

NCAA Basketball Players on OpenSponsorship

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The Masters 2024

Starting on April 11th
The Master Information

The Masters, synonymous with tradition and prestige, appeals to an audience that appreciates luxury and exclusivity. Brands sponsoring athletes at this event can tap into a market that values elegance and sophistication, ideal for high-end lifestyle, finance, and luxury goods sectors.

Golfers on OpenSponsorship

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The 2024 Kentucky Derby

May 24th
Kentucky Derby Information

The Kentucky Derby is not just a horse race; it's a cultural event filled with tradition and fashion. For brands, this presents an opportunity to engage with a premium audience in a setting that blends sports with style and elegance. It's particularly appealing for fashion, luxury, and lifestyle brands.

Horse Racing & Riding Athletes on OpenSponsorship

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Summer Olympics 2024

Starting on July 26th
Olympics Information

The Summer Olympics, with its global appeal and diverse range of sports, offers an unmatched platform for brand exposure. Sponsoring athletes here means connecting with a worldwide audience, ideal for brands seeking global recognition and wanting to associate with the values of excellence and international unity.

Olympics Athletes on OpenSponsorship

Why Market With Athletes Around Major Sporting Events in 2024?

Major sporting events offer a unique and powerful platform for brands to engage with large, diverse, and passionate audiences. These events often command global attention, creating an ideal stage for brands to showcase their message and values. The emotional connection fans have with sports translates into a deeper engagement with associated brand campaigns, making it a potent tool for building brand loyalty and recognition. Whether it's through athlete endorsements, event sponsorships, or thematic advertising, aligning with these high-profile events can significantly amplify a brand's visibility and impact. Working with Athletes on Influencer Marketing campaigns can be an easy way for brands to test the waters around these events.

Inspiration: Marketing Ideas For A Health & Wellness Brand During 2024 Sports Events Like the Super Bowl

Wellness Tips Series with Athletes: Collaborate with athletes to create a series of short, engaging videos or social media posts that offer wellness tips. These could range from healthy Super Bowl snack recipes to quick workout routines. Sharing these tips in the lead-up to the Super Bowl can help associate your brand with healthy living even during a traditionally indulgent event.

Athlete-Hosted Virtual Wellness Events: Organize virtual events such as yoga sessions, meditation classes, or fitness challenges hosted by athletes. These events can be promoted as a way to stay active and mindful during the Super Bowl season, offering fans a unique way to connect with their favorite sports stars.

Super Bowl Wellness Challenges: Create a Super Bowl-themed wellness challenge, where participants track their fitness or nutrition goals for a chance to win prizes. Athletes can be involved as challenge leaders or motivators, sharing their own progress and encouraging participants through social media.

Athlete-Endorsed Product Launch: Use the Super Bowl season to launch new health and wellness products, endorsed by athletes. This could include anything from nutritional supplements to fitness gear. Athletes can promote these products through their social media channels, tying in the excitement of the Super Bowl with the benefits of your products.

Healthy Super Bowl Watch Parties: Sponsor healthy Super Bowl watch parties hosted by athletes. These events can showcase how to enjoy the game while maintaining a healthy lifestyle, with a focus on nutritious foods, active breaks during the game, and wellness-themed games and activities.

Each of these ideas not only taps into the immense popularity of the Super Bowl but also aligns with the health and wellness ethos of your brand. By leveraging the influence of athletes, you can effectively engage with a wide audience and create a strong association between your brand and a healthy lifestyle, even during one of the biggest sporting events of the year.

Want to learn more about marketing during the Super Bowl? We have a whole post that outlines the budget you'll need and who is a good fit to work with! 

How Long Does It Take To Complete An Athlete Sponsorship Deal-1Timing Your Athlete Sponsorship Deals

A crucial aspect of aligning with these events is understanding the timeline for securing athlete sponsorship deals. As outlined in our blog, the process can vary in length, but knowing the typical timeframe is key for effective planning.

  1. Initial Research and Contact: This stage involves identifying suitable athletes and initiating contact. Depending on the athlete's schedule and responsiveness, this can take a few days to a couple of weeks.

  2. Negotiation: Once contact is established, negotiating terms is the next step. This process includes discussing deliverables, compensation, and contract details, which can take anywhere from a week to a month.

  3. Finalizing the Deal: After agreeing on terms, finalizing the deal includes legal reviews and signing the contract. This stage can be completed relatively quickly, often within a week, assuming there are no legal hold-ups.

  4. Activation: The final step is the activation of the sponsorship, which involves the athlete endorsing your brand or product. The timing here depends on the nature of the activation and can vary significantly.

The entire process from initial contact to activation can range from a few weeks to several months. For major events like those in 2024, starting early is crucial. Brands should begin the process at least 1-3 months in advance, ensuring enough lead time for effective campaign planning and execution.

How To Get Started

Major sporting events offer a wide range of opportunities for brands to connect with wide and engaged audiences. Now, the next step is to turn this potential into reality, and Opensponsorship is your tool for doing just that. By signing up and creating an account, you can start the exciting journey of collaborating with athletes who resonate with your brand's values and ambitions. Whether you're aiming to make a splash at the Super Bowl or create a lasting impact during the Summer Olympics, Opensponsorship provides a seamless and efficient platform to connect with the right athletes for your campaigns. Don't miss the chance to be part of these monumental events – sign up at Opensponsorship today and begin crafting your brand's most memorable and impactful marketing campaigns yet.

Create an Account Today!


Jeff is OpenSponsorship's Director of Marketing. He typically writes about sports sponsorship, marketing, and tips & tricks for brands.