Helping brands to partner with athletes in their influencer marketing and sponsorship marketing campaigns

Top Athlete Social Media Campaigns

Sep 12, 2022 9:15:00 AM / by Adam Burrows posted in influencer marketing, sponsoring athletes, athlete endorsement, Social Media Marketing

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The growth of social media in the Sports world

The growth of social media in the sports world has expanded in numerous directions. With the growth of TikTok, Instagram, You Tube, and Snapchat, more creative ways are coming out to grow athletes' presence online. 

The statistics below indicate that video recorded or pictured content on social media apps gained more followers from younger audiences. Athletes are developing creative strategies to stay close with fans through video content. The spark in the number of brands partnering with athletes for social media campaigns has increased. Brands are finding more ways to get creative and form a closer reach with audiences. 

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More marketing campaigns with athletes are being tailored for social media purposes. Focusing on Instagram Reels and TikToks has seen a huge share when it comes to content creation as it reaches a higher engagement rate. Social media platforms like TikTok have seen a successful spike in growth because of how users are better able to engage with content creators. Fast sharing content has become the new popular way of consuming modern media.

Check Out Brands Who Have Worked with Athletes On Various Social Media Campaigns:

 

TikTok 

  • NBA player James Harden recently partnered with Adidas on a TikTok video promoting the new Harden Vol. 3 basketball shoes. In the video, which has amassed over 2.4 million views, Harden repeatedly asks people if they want his new shoes before giving them a pair.
  • Giannis Antetokounmpo, a basketball player for the Milwaukee Bucks, recently partnered with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) to create a series of TikTok videos. In one video, Antetokounmpo drives a Fiat 124 Spider around Milwaukee and talks about his love for the city.

The Growth of Social Media in the Sports WorldThe Growth of Social Media in the Sports World

YouTube

  • In May 2019, American footballer Antonio Brown posted a video on his YouTube channel of him dancing in a Puma sweatsuit. The video was titled "Antonio Brown x Puma Dance Video" and included the caption, "Had fun dancing in my new @puma sweatsuit! Can't wait to wear it on the field this year!" The video received over 2 million views.
  • Adidas also uses an athlete, Lionel Messi, to promote their products. In one YouTube advert, Messi discusses how he started playing football at a very young age, and how Adidas has been with him every step of the way.

Top Athlete Social Media Campaignsunnamed (14)

Instagram

  • With over 9 million followers on Instagram, Floyd Mayweather Jr. is one of the most popular boxers on the site. His account is full of pictures and videos of his training and matches, as well as sponsored posts for various brands.
  • TaylorMade, a golf equipment company, recently partnered with Rory McIlroy to promote their products on Instagram. They posted a series of photos and videos of Rory using their products. The posts received thousands of likes and comments from fans.

The Growth of Social Media in the Sports WorldThe Growth of Social Media in the Sports World

Final Thoughts

If you're interested in using athletes to grow your brand awareness, join OpenSponsorship today! We have a growing database of athletes who are eager to connect with new sponsors.

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The Power of Female Athletes on Social Media

Jul 8, 2021 3:21:54 PM / by Tracey Wilson posted in Influencer, influencer marketing, instagram, marketing ideas, Marketing Recommendations, open sponsorship, Social Insights, social media, sports, sports marketing, twitter, athlete, athlete endorsement, athlete influencer, athlete marketing, athletes, endorsements, fan engagement, trends, Tik Tok, youtube, TikTok, soccer, fitness influencers, Social Media Marketing

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Social media has become an integral part of a professional athlete's career and female athletes seem to possess some of the larger followings, giving them strong influence. Not only can this help the individual athlete but it can be a powerful tool in highlighting women's sport, bringing more interest and additional coverage.  Female athletes can also evoke change in other ways by being an influencer, such as by using their own personal stories to inspire others. “The stakeholders on the commercial side of sports are constantly searching for the next frontier, the next growth play,” Dan Cohen, who leads sports marketing company Octagon’s media rights consulting division, said in an email. “It is clearly women’s sports.”

It has been reported that women's sport does not receive as much coverage and investment even though it has more room for growth than men's sport. In 2018 studies showed that only 0.4% of the total commercial investment (in sport) goes into women’s sport, despite a Nielsen report revealing that 84% of general sports fans have an interest in women’s sports. 51% of those surveyed were male, which means utilizing female athletes as a way to reach fans can be greatly beneficial. Deloitte projected that the rise of women’s sports in 2020 would dominate the sports industry and that “sponsors should consider getting involved now to capitalize on the new opportunities and avenues for engagement that this growth area may create.” The influence of social media has also grown since the Nielsen survey was taken, especially since digital activity has been vital to the survival of many industries and how many athletes and leagues interacted with their fans throughout the pandemic. Deloitte's survey found that millennials are 40 percent more likely than baby boomers to use social media to obtain information about their favorite teams and players. This behavioral trend emphasizes the importance of the digital connection athletes have with their fans and the power it wields. 

The pandemic was hard on the sport industry but women's sport continues to have strong growth and investment potential. NWGL's Packer said, "the amount of money that it takes for a company to meaningfully support a women’s league is so vastly different than what it takes to have the smallest piece of attachment for a men’s league.” A good example of this potential for growth is women's soccer in the U.S., which has seen an increase in interest that has translated into an increase in stadium attendance. In 2020 the NWSL was poised to have a record-breaking year after signing new broadcast deals, which resulted in a 22% increase in game attendance, according to Soccer Stadium Digest. In addition to this the women's NCAA tournament continues to prove that it can bring in viewers as it could fetch as much as $20 million a year as a stand-alone event on the open market. Now that things are getting back to normal women's sport will need to keep up the momentum.

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Athletes as Social Media Influencers

May 1, 2020 11:18:12 AM / by Zack Smith posted in influencer marketing, social media, social media athletes, sponsoring athletes, athlete endorsement, athlete influencer, athletes on social media

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A lot goes into what builds an athlete's brand. This starts, of course, with accomplishments in their sport. Strong performance and accolades can put an athlete in the spotlight and get people to talk about them and become fans of theirs. However, the athlete's presence outside of their performance on the field can go a long way to taking their personal brand to the next level and turn them into stars.

Social media is one of these tools that help athletes to grow their brands. Different social media platforms allow athletes to speak their thoughts on current events, share memories and important events in their personal lives, create entertaining or funny content, and, overall, connect with their fans personally.

One strength of active social media use is that it helps fans to get a closer look into the lives of athletes. Athletes can often be put on a podium that makes it seem as if their lives are different than that of the average person. However, social media helps us realize that many athletes love the same food, the same music, the same TV shows, the same video games, and have the same hobbies as everyone else. This can help give the athlete a more authentic and relatable image that makes fans feel more connected to them.

Social media usage is consistent and a huge percentage of fans spend time on social media. These platforms are growing, too, and more athletes are starting to expand their online presences to platforms like TikTok and YouTube. The number of athletes on TikTok and athletes on YouTube is rising because athletes see the potential in these platforms to increase fan engagement and brand awareness. These two platforms specifically are very engaging places for athletes to create content that appeals to their fans and addresses them directly by speaking into a camera. Two athletes with YouTube channels, among the many, are Trevor May and Alex Bregman. Trevor uses his channel to share one of his hobbies, video games, with friends, and often connects with some of the biggest names in the space.

Athlete Influencers as Endorsers

One product of strong social media usage is the endorsement opportunities that come along with it. Social media is an incredibly important tool for marketers because of the engaging and authentic content that can be made to endorse a product.

The concept of athlete endorsements is nothing new. One of the earlier and perhaps the most iconic is Michael Jordan's partnership with Nike, which of course turned into the extremely successful side brand Jordan. While few endorsement deals are of this nature and magnitude, the influencer marketing industry as a whole is projected to reach nearly $10 billion in 2020 and isn't slowing down anytime soon. 

And while deals like Jordan's may be the most well-known. athletes of Jordan's stature aren't the only ones that make great endorsers for a brand. Brands often tap into nano-influencers and micro-influencers because of the incredible engagement rates they have on their posts compared to larger influencers.

Average engagement rates across some of the top influencer marketing platforms.
Influencer Marketing Hub

The chart above from Influencer Marketing Hub shows the engagement rates for influencers of different sizes across the three top platforms for influencer marketing: Instagram, TikTok, and Twitter. As it shows, smaller influencers often have significantly higher average engagement rates than the larger influencers. So, while the star athletes with high followings may seem like the sexy picks as endorsers for a brand, sometimes a collection of smaller influencers can be a more cost-efficient investment and a better fit for your brand. All in all, athletes of any size can make for great influencer endorsers.

Why Athletes?

What separates athletes from other social media influencers is the edge that they have by playing their sport. For example, a player on the New York Giants has an existing fanbase solely because of the team they play on. They also appear on television often, and when the team performs well or has a major accomplishment, some of that gained exposure translates to the player as well. Peoples' fandom for their teams translates to an affinity for the players on it as well, and success from either the player or the team as a whole can only cause this to grow. This post below from Javon Kinlaw celebrating himself being drafted by the San Francisco 49ers received nearly 45,000 likes- almost as many as his previous 8 posts COMBINED- and the comments are full of 49ers fans showing love to their newest player.

A post from San Francisco 49ers rookie Javon Kinlaw celebrating being drafted.

This holds true for other athletes too that may not play for a major team, or even any team at all. Take a fitness influencer, for example. People who follow this influencer often feel a connection to them. Maybe they follow them because they also exercise often and enjoy the workout tips and insight that the influencer gives. Either way, this connection between the influencer and their followers helps establish trust, and trust goes a long way in the world of endorsements and sponsored posts. This trust makes the fans more likely to take the influencer's opinions of a product seriously and makes them more likely to become customers.

And while their actions related to their sport give them this foundation, athletes are often so much more than just that. To many, athletes are role models, trendsetters, and influencers on the lives of their fans. Athletes who play a team sport can be a part of some of their fans' greatest memories- like Chiefs fans being able to celebrate their first Super Bowl victory in 50 years. Athletes use social media to show their fans the other side of their lives and show the world their authentic selves, and this is what can make athlete influencers so valuable for brands.

To learn more about the power of athletes as social media influencers, reach out to an OpenSponsorship rep today or send us an email at info@opensponsorship.com. You'll be surprised by how many athletes we work with that can make an incredible spokesperson for your brand- if you haven't tried working with athletes, you need to!

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Athletes on TikTok

Mar 30, 2020 4:08:57 PM / by Zack Smith posted in ad, ads opportunities, how to find sponsorship, influencer marketing, influencers, LeBron James, marketing, marketing ideas, marketing opportunities, marketing strategy, marketing tools, NBA, open sponsorship, OpenSponsorship, shaquille o'neal, social media, social media athletes, Sponsor, sponsored athletes, sponsoring athletes, sponsors, sponsorship, sponsorships, sports, sports marketing, sports marketing campaigns, sports sponsorship, sports sponsorships, sports technology for athletes, athlete endorsement, Athlete Endorsements, athlete marketing, athletes on social media, Basketball, brand deals, Brand Endorsements, brands, Endorsement, endorsements, fan engagement, National Basketball Association, trends, Tik Tok

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The Coronavirus pandemic has taken the sports world by storm, and athletes now have an unprecedented amount of time on their hands leading to an increase in the number of athletes on TikTok. Some are taking on new hobbies -see Giannis Antetokounmpo learning the guitar and Cody Zeller learning to cook and play the guitar (well, trying to). Some are doing their best to stay in shape at home- nice setup, Serge Ibaka! But most of all, athletes are more active and engaging on social media than ever before. The most interesting takeaway from this uptick in social media activity has been the increase in athletes on TikTok.

If you’re not familiar by now, TikTok is a social media platform where users can post short videos of just about anything they want- dancing, comedy, music, tricks, or one of the countless “challenges” that go viral on the platform. TikTok began to take off in 2019 has over 500 million active users, making it a great place for influencers, like athletes, to build their brand and engage with their audience.

The sports world began to take notice long ago, with teams, leagues, broadcast networks, and even team mascots creating accounts and regularly posting content, ranging from highlights, messages from players, and just normal funny clips. The NBA even invited TikTok stars Addison Rae, Charli D’Amelio, Dixie D’Amelio, Chase Hudson, and Jalaiah to 2020 All-Star Weekend. The former three made videos with several NBA stars, including OpenSponsorship athletes Nikola Jokic and Pascal Siakam, and even helped out Aaron Gordon with this Dunk Contest dunk! And now, with athletes home and quarantining, they have had the time to join in on the fun themselves, and we love seeing athletes on TikTok.

Philadelphia 76ers rookie Matisse Thybulle was one of the first- “the only logical thing for me to do at this point is to start making TikToks!” He has been regularly posting content, even taking the time one day to interact with a fan who was hoping an NBA player would notice his post. Star Grizzlies rookie Ja Morant joined in too, making a fake player introduction to help cope with him missing basketball. Young Thunder stars Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Darius Bazley teamed up in a different way than usual to perform one of the hundreds of viral dances that become popular on TikTok.

But it’s not just the young guys having fun on TikTok, even the world champ athletes are on TikTok! LeBron James and his family enjoy the platform, where LeBron’s son Bronny posted a video of the family dancing that LeBron later re-posted on his Instagram story. Retired athletes on TikTok include NBA Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal who is a regular on the platform and collaborated with Forto Coffee to create a fun and energized post promoting their coffee shots that received over 310 thousand impressions and nearly 19 thousand engagements.

TikTok is the hottest social media platform in the world right now and athletes on TikTok prove that the sports world is taking notice. These posts garner massive amounts of impressions and engagement from fans and partnering with athletes on TikTok is the perfect way for brands to connect with these audiences. Talk to an OpenSponsorship rep today to take advantage of this opportunity, or send us an email info@opensponsorship.com

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How Can Athletes Find More Marketing Deals?

Apr 11, 2017 2:43:54 PM / by Jason Lampkin posted in Influencer, influencer marketing, influencers, jason lampkin, Local athletes, Local Businesses, social media, social media athletes, Sponsor, sponsored athletes, sponsoring athletes, sponsors, sports, sports brands, Sports Sponsor, sports sponsorship, sports sponsorships, athlete, athlete endorsement, Athlete Endorsements, athlete influencer, athlete marketing, Brand, brand ambassador, brand building, Brand Endorsements, branding, business, gronk

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Please allow me to introduce myself. My name is Jason Severiano Lampkin - that's me in the picture above - and I'm one of the new interns here at OpenSponsorship. Though many - if not all of you - will never have even heard of me, there once was a time when people thought the world would never forget my name. Instead, I became the man that many never even get the chance to know.

I excelled in sport from a young age and was touted - as is often the case for prodigious talent, particularly in soccer - as “the next Michael Owen.” Admittedly, we shared many similarities; we went to the same junior school and high schools, we played for the same local and county sides, we both played for Manchester United, and - as you'll see from the video below - we both possessed an electrifying turn of pace. But a cruel twist of fate and a wicked twist of my knee was all it took for my promising soccer career to take a quite drastic U-turn.

The only silver-lining with the ACL injury was that it meant that I was still following in Michaels footsteps.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-H1TimXcg1c

But enough of the sob story. Let’s fast-forward five years and focus on the positive.

After a fun-filled, success-sprinkled collegiate career on a sports scholarship at Long Island University, I’m finally heading into the final few weeks of my MBA. I’d never imagined that I’d be picking up a post-graduate diploma - I’d always fantasized about lifting trophies instead  - but I did envisage a future where I’d still be involved in sport in some way, so thanks Opensponsorship for making one prophecy a reality!

Working here has opened my eyes to the countless possibilities the modern-day athlete can be exposed to. I’d had a glimpse of it in my days as a first-team squad member at Aston Villa, and after a week of working on delightful deals for all the amazing athletes on our site, I decided to give it a go myself. I wanted a piece of the pie, so I applied to every campaign I could find and crossed my fingers for a bite. Within a week, I’d already partnered with two brands and was in discussion with a couple more. 

You can find my OpenSponsorship athlete profile HERE.

I was hungry for deals and OpenSponsorship served up some real delights. For instance, one of the brands I decided to work with - Yümmy Bazaar - offered partnered athletes tasty treats from their World Sampler Box in return for a simple social media post, meaning that I got to sample snacks from Spain, Georgia, Russia and Italy just for twiddling my thumbs. My fingers worked faster dipping in to the pack of Ibizan sea-salt chips than they did on the caption! Hardly hungry work.

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The success I’ve experienced on OpenSponsorship - just as an intern and former professional athlete - has whetted my appetite for more and I can only imagine the feasts that awaits all of you big-hitters out there. And though I’m sure you’re all thinking that I’m operating on some insider information, please believe me when I say that the deals I’ve done have been completely my own doing.

Brands are looking for interested athletes that will interact with their product or service and engage their followers, and us athletes are looking for good brands to work with to make some extra income. It’s simple math and it always equals a favourable outcome for both parties.

So let's look at another OpenSponsorship example...

Take our skilled skateboarder Greg Lutzka for instance. He submitted a proposal that was accepted by one of our brilliant companies - EightSleep - and produced an awesome social media post telling his thousands of followers about the tremendous technology involved with the company's ingenious mattresses.

 

OpenSponsorship; Greg Lutzka & EightSleep "Got great sleep last night !! Comfort meets technology with the @eightsleep smart mattress. I was super hyped to control everything from my I-phone including the smart alarm, bed warming, sleep trends data and much more !! Big Thanks to eight sleep !! #eightsleep #technology #smartmattress "

 

So not only does Greg now get a better nights sleep, he can also rest assured that we at OpenSponsorship will keep working around the clock to keep finding him - and all of our other athletes - fantastic partners offering outstanding opportunities.

Greg's social following easily trumps mine - just look at how our Instagram followings compare (seve_says vs greglutzka) - but OpenSponsorship's platform helps to level the playing field and make applying to campaigns a fair game for all of their athletes. There are deals to be done for athletes of all shapes, sizes and social stats; from the established pro's of the sportsphere - like Russell Westbrook and Rob Gronkowski - to the niche stars like myself.

There's plenty of promising campaigns - like the ones in the picture below - currently up on our site that have been recently posted by brands seeking athletes to promote their fantastic product or service.

OpenSponsorship Campaigns

Keen for a slice of the action?...

If you're an athlete and interested in partnering with some awesome brands and earning extra income, royalties and free product, CLICK HERE to create your free OpenSponsorship account. For all of our fantastic athletes already signed-up, please follow THIS LINK to view all of the wonderful opportunities just waiting for you to apply.

Apply intently to campaigns you’re interested in; foster a good relationship with the brands on our platform; accept deals that delight you; fulfil your requirements and reap the rewards. It's like anything in sport; the more you put in, the more you get out.

Stay hungry, my friends!

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How Can I Find the Perfect Athlete to Promote My Brand?

Mar 24, 2017 5:38:54 PM / by Jason Lampkin posted in amanda ruller, Influencer, influencer marketing, influencers, Local athletes, Local Businesses, social media, social media athletes, Sponsor, sponsored athletes, sponsoring athletes, sponsors, sports, sports brands, Sports Sponsor, sports sponsorship, sports sponsorships, trago, athlete, athlete endorsement, Athlete Endorsements, athlete influencer, athlete marketing, Brand, brand ambassador, brand building, Brand Endorsements, branding, business, gronk

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Last week, we helped one of our brands (Trago) work with one of our athletes (Amanda Ruller) for an amazing social media post.

Amanda is a professional football player, Olympic weight-lifting competitor, CrossFit fanatic, personal trainer & the winner of a Hyundai Sonata on The Price is Right TV show! For these reasons, she has a very loyal following of over 90k social media followers (well maybe except the last part) and is always looking on OpenSponsorship for the next best brand to promote.

Two weeks ago, she applied and was accepted to Trago's campaign on OpenSponsorship. They were looking to give a free bottle ($79 value) in exchange for exposure via social media. Even with her large following, Amanda agreed to post in exchange for free product because of how much she loved the brand!

 

Amanda Ruller Amanda Ruller posing with Trago product

 

Trago used OpenSponsorship to drive sales, increase brand recognition, and add a "coolness" factor by partnering with a professional athlete. And this is just one post! They've had more than 20 applications just in the last 2 weeks from more athletes like Amanda.

Want to get in on the fun? I'll give you the steps:

1. Create a free account on www.OpenSponsorship.com

2. Create a campaign (job posting for our athletes) to promote your brand on OpenSponsorship and attract interested athletes.

3. Start a 7 day (risk free!) trial with us to publish your campaign.

4. Receive incoming applications from professional athletes to promote your brand.

5. View all of your applications in one place along with different information and social media demographics from each athlete. Pick the ones you feel are the best fits for you!

To learn more or ask questions, reach out to an OpenSponsorship rep or send us an email at info@opensponsorship.com today!

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Shirt Sleeve Sponsorship Opens Up

Mar 20, 2017 4:34:14 PM / by Jason Lampkin posted in Influencer, influencer marketing, influencers, Local athletes, Local Businesses, NBA, shirt sleeve sponsorship, shirt sponsorship, sleeve sponsorship, social media, social media athletes, Sponsor, sponsored athletes, sponsoring athletes, sponsors, sports, sports brands, Sports Sponsor, sports sponsorship, sports sponsorships, athlete, athlete endorsement, Athlete Endorsements, athlete influencer, athlete marketing, Brand, brand ambassador, brand building, branding, business

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Manchester City's 2007/08 season started with new owner Thaksin Shinawatra splurging £30 million by adding eight relatively high-profile players to the first team squad. The main source of the funds? The Thai billionaire businessman's bulging wallet. Sure, the teams sponsorship agreements helped, but secondary shirt sleeve sponsorship, which would have added another stream of income, hadn't even been considered. In fact, the idea hadn't even been considered in the entire soccersphere.

City had spent three of the four previous Premier League seasons finishing in low mid-table positions (i.e., two to four places above the relegation zone). The team was badly in need of an influx of new blood if it was to avoid a similar fate, or worse, in the upcoming season. This meant that Thaksin would have to dig deep in to his pocket to get the ball rolling on the required turnaround. A decade down the line, it's fair to say that the initial investment has paid dividends. Three domestic cups, two domestic league titles, and one new owner later, the 2016/17 Citizens look a whole lot different.

Soccer aficionados will argue long into the night about the means that facilitated the Citizens meteoric rise from mid-table meddlers to top-tier competitors. They will no doubt call in to question the source of the funds and cite the rules of financial fair play, and ponder whether the transition would have been possible without Shinawatra and subsequent owner Sheikh Mansour bankrolling the process. One thing that cannot be questioned, however, is that their plan - both on-and-off the field of play - has been beautifully executed. The Blue Moon has well and truly risen, and City's groundbreaking shirt sleeve sponsorship agreement with South Korean manufacturer Nexen Tire could well shine a new light on the world of sports sponsorship and propel the team even further forward.

Next season, a new rule will come in to play allowing Premier League teams like City to have a secondary sponsor on the sleeves of their shirts. And it won't be long before we see other EPL sides strike shirt sleeve sponsorship deals as they try to keep-up with their cash-strapped and commercially savvy Mancunian counterpart. We can certainly envisage our super Spur, Erik Lamela, sporting a Tottenham strip with a secondary sponsor displayed just below his shoulder.

And as we gaze in to our crystal ball, we foresee a future where shirt sleeve sponsorship deals become commonplace right across the soccersphere. Foreign teams, keen to compete with the likes of City and Spurs in European competition, will soon start searching for such commercial opportunities of their own. So too will teams from other nations intent on tilting the axis of world soccer from Europe to a different continent.

So then that begs an important question. How long 'til we see other Opensponsorship soccer stars like Atletico Madrid's Koke and Juventus' Paulo Dybala sporting strips with sleeve sponsors on them? A bigger budget - derived from shirt sleeve sponsorship deals - would give their teams more purchasing power and enable them to attract the best talent. This would ultimately increase their chance of success. City have, after all, proved that cunning commercial craft goes hand-in-hand with lifting trophies and raising a global profile. And as the team becomes more and more successful, their sponsors are exposed to a greater number of potential clients. It's a cyclical, symbiotic and lucrative relationship.

Sports sponsorship is a big, big business, particularly in the Premier League - the most watched league in the world. City and their shirt sleeve sponsors Nexen both stand to make a pretty penny from the deal. Nexen - like City's Thai owner Thaksin Shinawatra ten years ago - rightfully expect to see a return on their investment. A shirt sleeve sponsorship agreement with such a successful club will no doubt cover the South Korean company's outlay many times over. Their brand awareness will be significantly boosted both in Britain and abroad, leading to an increase in sales.

The benefits that shirt sleeve sponsorship agreements will bring both the sports teams and the brands they partner with are innumerable. Simply put, shirt sleeve sponsorships make sense: they are a win-win in a game that is designed to be win-lose. Perhaps Nexen read our "7 Reasons to Use Sports Sponsorship" as a brief before partnering with the boys in blue, in which case, Cheonmanaeyo! (You're welcome!)

And with the Philadelphia 76ers becoming the first NBA team to strike a shirt sponsorship agreement in May last year, it won't be long before other sports follow suit. The NBA will allow the 76ers to wear StubHub's logo on their jerseys starting in the 2017/18 season. Savvy business when considering that the move is expected to generate at least $100 million annually for the league.

"I've always been jealous of the English Premier League teams. NASCAR figured it out a long time ago," 76ers CEO Scott O'Neil said when he was interviewed after completing the deal. "For some reason, the big four sports in North America have not. I think it's an unbelievable opportunity." Opening up shirt sponsorship space is a big leap for the NBA. Opening up secondary shirt sleeve sponsorship spots would be a slam dunk. MLS, NFL, MLB and NHL take note, and sports fans...watch that space! Secondary sponsorship is coming to a sleeve near you soon!

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Rising Stars of the MLB to Watch During Spring Training

Mar 7, 2017 2:59:07 PM / by Branden Mongiovi posted in Influencer, influencer marketing, influencers, Local athletes, Local Businesses, social media, social media athletes, Sponsor, sponsored athletes, sponsoring athletes, sponsors, sports, sports brands, Sports Sponsor, sports sponsorship, sports sponsorships, Uncategorized, athlete, athlete endorsement, Athlete Endorsements, athlete influencer, athlete marketing, Brand, brand ambassador, brand building, branding, business, gronk

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A meme showing the excitement about the return of baseball.

The birds are chirping, the sun is shining (almost), and baseball season is upon us (almost again). All right, maybe its just spring fever, but the OpenSponsorship team could not be more pumped about the upcoming MLB season. Just a month removed from pitchers and catchers reporting, most teams already have about 10 preseason games under their belt.

 

This time of the year has huge implications for young MLB talent. Each MLB team has three minor league levels under their umbrella, A, AA, and AAA. For the guys who were chosen to play during spring training, this time could mean the difference between a multi-million dollar contract, and waiting another year to get one more shot at it.

 

A hit, an error, a big play, a tendency a coach liked or disliked could mean the difference between a life long dream come true, or another year making below minimum wage at the minor league levels. There are a million ways to impress a coach, and a million ways to show a coach that you may not have what it takes to play at the next level. Spring training is the optimal time to make your self stand out from the crowd, you just have to hope your training paid off, and the cards are in your favor on those days.

 

When connecting your business with professional athletes, it is incredibly important to be able to recognize talent and where a player’s career may be heading. Luckily for you, we’ve done that part for you and compiled a list of the hottest young talent in the MLB looking for business opportunities on OpenSponsorship.

 

So with no further ado, PLAY BALL!

Yankees star catcher Gary Sanchez taking a swing at the plate.

Gary Sanchez, 24

Catcher, New York Yankees

Need I say more? I will anyway. This guy is holding the hottest bat in baseball and has a lot to prove this season. With any shot of making the playoffs last season a miracle and a half away, The New York Yankees decided to restructure in the last third of the season. They terminated A-Rods contract, made some position changes, and promoted some minor league players to join the squad. In that youth movement came Gary the Great. In 53 games played, the young stud belted 23 home runs, had 42 RBI’s, and was one of the best defensive catchers in the league. He is the whole package as well as a stand up guy with strong family values that any organization or business would be lucky to have in their corner.

 

Astros SS Carlos Correa is an MLB star and a great athlete endorser.

Carlos Correa, 22

Short Stop, Houston Astros

Carlos has a resume that is near impossible to compare to. Number 1 overall draft pick in 2012. Rookie of the year in 2015 when he was transferred to the big leagues. He has the fire and hunger of a rookie trying to make a name for himself, and the poise of a veteran who’s been around the block once or twice. "I just don't want to be one of the best players -- one of the best shortstops -- to ever play the game,” Correa said “I want to be like Roberto Clemente, one of the best humanitarians to ever be around the game." This guy has an unbelievable work ethic with a selfless attitude that is admired by all who knows him.

 

Roberto Osuna is an MLB star and a great athlete influencer endorser.Roberto Osuna, 22

Pitcher, Toronto Blue Jays

Coming out of Mexico, Osuna holds the record for youngest pitcher to do just about everything. He was drafted at the unimaginable age of 16 and has worked his way to the pros, making his MLB depute in 2015 at 19 years old. Osuna was invited to spring training in 2015 as a non-roster invitee. While initially not expecting to have any chance at making the major league team out of camp, Osuna impressed Blue Jays management through the first half of the spring. He has electric stuff and the peak of his career is in front of him.

Yankees shortstop Gleyber Torres is a rising MLB star and a great athlete endorser.

Gleyber Torres, 20

Second Base, New York Yankees

Torres is our youngest on the list at 20 years old. The Venezuelan was drafted by the Chicago Cubs. He was a centerpiece in a blockbuster trade that sent Aroldis Chapman from the Yankees to the Cubs while Torres was sent to New York. Never having started at second base, he is one of the prime candidates for the Yanks at the position this year. He's been preforming tremendously in spring training and we see him as a potential starter if things go the right way for Gleyber.

 

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Three Companies doing MLB Sponsorship Right

Feb 24, 2017 4:36:08 PM / by Branden Mongiovi posted in Influencer, influencer marketing, influencers, Local athletes, Local Businesses, social media, social media athletes, Sponsor, sponsored athletes, sponsoring athletes, sponsors, sports, sports brands, Sports Sponsor, sports sponsorship, sports sponsorships, Uncategorized, athlete, athlete endorsement, Athlete Endorsements, athlete influencer, athlete marketing, Brand, brand ambassador, brand building, Brand Endorsements, branding, business, gronk

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Looking to make a quick buck? All you have to do is create a sport, and have it become America’s greatest past time. Sounds easy right? The MLB as a whole is thriving when it comes to sponsorship revenues. In 2016 it was estimated that sponsorship dollars from the top 9 companies involved with the MLB would reach $360-400 million. This number is solely league revenue and does not include individual team and stadium/property sponsorship. When adding those categories to the grand total, it is estimated sponsorship revenues would reach nearly $800 million by the end of the 2016 season.

The 2016 MLB season was a year of tremendous growth. League sponsorship activation and renewal is up from the previous year by nearly $120 million. Commissioner Rob Manfred made a strategic play in labeling all of the MLB’s assets as “One Baseball.” His idea was to put television rights, online media, and the traditional business of the league for sponsorship under one umbrella. What does that mean? Basically if you are a sponsor of the MLB, you now have access to every platform in which they control, including the MLB Advanced Media, a huge online streaming service.

Lets take a look at some companies that are leading the sponsorship push for Major League Baseball.

Chevrolet

The American motor company Chevy has been involved in MLB sponsorship since 2005. Just last year they renewed their sponsorship with the league, continuing their partnership as Official Vehicle of Major League Baseball. Aside from that, they are also the Official Automotive Sponsor of the MLB and USA Baseball’s Play Ball initiative.

“Chevrolet’s partnership with Major League Baseball is a natural fit and allows the brand and our dealers to connect with generations of Americans on a personal level through the support of hometown teams at both the professional and youth levels,” said Paul Edwards, U.S. vice president of Chevrolet Marketing

Zobrist

Not to mention, they gifted a pearly new 50th Edition Chevrolet Camaro to the 2016 World Series MVP, Ben Zobrist.

New Era

The headwear company New Era has been producing on-field team hats since 1939. Come 1993 they became the exclusive on-field cap of the MLB and have been ever since. Prior to the 2015 season, MLB reached an agreement with New Era extending their exclusive hat rights through the 2019 season.

Stroman -CAPSON Our athlete Marcus Stroman in the #CAPSON campaign 

Taco Bell

MLB sponsorship partner since 2004, Taco Bell has been running creative and engaging campaigns for the loyal baseball fan base. For the 6th year straight, Taco Bell activated its “Steal a Base, Steal a Taco” promotion. The deal is as follows, for every stolen base in the World Series, the deserving (IMO) citizens of the US are able to “steal” a taco. If you don’t like free tacos, what’s your deal?

 

lindor Cleveland Indian's Francisco Lindor slides into second base, gracing the US with free tacos. Lindor for president!                                  

Partner with one of our MLB stars

Gary Sanchez  had a record-breaking rookie season with the Yankees in 2016. Belting 28 homeruns in just 53 games, he is widely considered one of the most exciting players to watch in baseball. Every time he gets to the plate, and behind it (catcher) you expect something extraordinary. Here’s an athlete that has been extremely active in player appearances since his come to stardom. Want Gary to come to your event or training facility to attract new customers? Lets set it up. #ElGary

Gleyber Torres ranked the no. 1 prospect in the Yankees organization right now. Gleyber has tremendous potential with his quickness and abilities at the short-stop position. This is another one of our young guys that we expect will do great things over the next few seasons. Get him while you can!

 

 

 

 

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