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

The NBA’s Technology Focused Sponsorships

Jun 1, 2022 11:41:03 AM / by Rohan Lulla posted in sports technology for athletes, National Basketball Association, Parterships, Meta, Google, Microsoft

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As the NBA Finals kicks off between the Golden State Warriors and Boston Celtics, many fans have enjoyed a season full of surprises and great basketball. For those who tuned into watching the NBA playoff games, many would not have missed the main sponsors on the home court of the games: Google, Meta and Microsoft. The tech giants have built a large market share within the technology sector and have tied their marketing affiliations with the NBA. Diving more into the meaning of these sponsorship deals, we find the heavy push the NBA is making with advancements for the future of the game.

*NBA courts with each of the Tech Sponsorships*

The NBA recently made its way into the Metaverse with a futuristic concept known as “NBA Lane”, which allows fans to take part in the NBA’s virtual reality concept. The newly introduced technological concept can be found on the Meta Quest 2 headset. The large growth in Meta’s partnership with the NBA is to help promote the future of sports through virtual reality. The virtual reality concept allows fans to: engage in a free throw shootout with friends, low-gravity dunk contest, and watching NBA content. The Metaverse partnership is bringing to life a whole new layer to the sports world and allowing fans to start a new wave of interaction with their favorite teams and players. NBA Lane comes to life through virtual reality | NBA.com

 

Google and the NBA recently inked a deal that would make the Google Pixel the NBA’s official fan phone and sponsor. The Google Pixel currently serves as the official sponsor of the 2022 NBA Playoffs. Thus, the NBA is planning to grow with Google in order to better integrate data analytics and statistics. On April 16th, Google introduced the Google Pixel Arena which is a 3D environment within the NBA app. This new feature will allow fans to better engage with the NBA playoffs through: creating avatars, half time and post game interactions, and provide informative statistics and information on the gameplay. Google is also currently in a deal with its platform YouTube TV and the NBA as one of the primary sponsors for the NBA Finals. The earlier push for online streaming of live games was introduced during the 2018 NBA Finals and is a well-suited partner in the heavy streaming content world that has emerged since. 

Welcome to the NBA and Google Pixel Arena: an immersive 3D experience  during the 2022 Playoffs | NBA.com

 

In 2020, the NBA and Microsoft formed a multi year deal that would make Microsoft the Official Technology Partner, Official Artificial Intelligence Partner, and Official Cloud and Laptop Partner of the NBA. Microsoft’s deal is also associated with the WNBA, NBA G League, and USA basketball. Adam Silver, NBA commissioner stated: “our goal, working with Microsoft, is to create customized content that allows fans — whether they are in an NBA arena or watching from anywhere around the world — to immerse themselves in all aspects of the game and engage directly with our teams and players.” The NBA plans to use Microsoft’s Azure AI technology to use an immense amount of statistical data and metrics about players and games to grow new ways of fan engagement. The Azure technology has led to the emergence of the NBA Court Optix tool which allows for the access to never before used insights and data points on how teams and players are passing, shooting, and playing the game. This technology has also been useful in personalizing fan experiences more efficiently and further establishing a futuristic level within sports analytics 

 

The advancements and endorsements the NBA has made with Meta, Google and Microsoft will serve to push the future of sports to the present. The NBA is creating a technology based community to better the interactions of the many NBA fans who seek to engage more with the game. The introduction of NBA Lane, the Google Pixel Arena, NBA Court Optix are efficient at creating a more established virtual community that can serve the interest of fans globally for the NBA. These advancements within sports are the key to  growing new users, fan interaction, and more established communities of fans. The raise in awareness during the 2022 Playoffs of the newly launched collaborative products will further establish the NBA as a technology front-runner within the sports industry. Technology businesses are growing product results and solutions with a heavier focus on sports partners. These long lasting technology partnerships being formed with a league like the NBA are paving the way for the growth in tech partnerships and sponsors. Opensponsorship works to bring collaborative businesses together to create efficient long term partnerships. Focusing on the growing trends and outlook, Opensponsorship creates solutions that enable efficient development for athletes and brands.

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Future of Blockchain Sports Sponsorships

Mar 24, 2022 9:22:37 AM / by ABJ posted in influencers, marketing ideas, OpenSponsorship, sports brands, sports marketing, sports technology for athletes, branding, brands, endorsements, blockchain, cryptocurrency

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Future of Blockchain Sports Sponsorships

The 2022 global sports marketing report claims that blockchain companies investing in sports sponsorship is expected to reach US$5bn by 2026. Crypto sports sponsorships present an effortless entry towards the ultimatum of integration. Crypto payments for sports merchandise, tickets or salaries being paid in crypto are closer than they have ever been.

Crypto investment in sports sponsorship

OpenSponsorship’s association with the Dallas Mavericks is an excellent example. The NBA team, a step ahead, already accepts crypto payments for merchandise and tickets. Sports partnerships like these are a testament to overall growth and importance to various sports industries. But, how can one leverage crypto to assist in the success of their sports sponsorship business? There is arguably no better method to promote your business than to partner with a worldwide athletic property that can deliver your message to your target demographic directly. Already, we're seeing blockchain and crypto firms form partnerships with sports teams, such as Arsenal and Cashbet in English soccer or Dragon Coin and Techeetah in Formula E.

What are fan tokens and how do they work?

The sports sponsorship industry is continuously monitoring new synergies within the trending space of cryptocurrency. Fan tokens are cryptocurrencies linked to a certain team or league that can be used to exchange team-related value such as tickets, voting on club matters, granting retail discounts, and increasing fan participation. Fan tokens have already been implemented by Atlético Madrid, FC Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain FC, AC Milan, Juventus, and AS Roma.

Fan tokens - digital asset for fans

Why is cryptocurrency essential to the sports sponsorship ecosystem?

There should be more opportunities for companies within the ecosystem willing to participate. Legitimacy and fan engagement are marked as the two key components for the success of sports sponsorship companies. Sport sponsorship organizations can leverage blockchain technologies by implementing a more secure and transparent ticket exchange system. This technology opens up the door for both sponsors and rights holders to forge new relationships by effectively democratising the sports sponsorship playing field so any brand can play on sport’s grandest stages.

Litecoin sponsorship for UFC

What should Sports Sponsorship industries keep in mind moving forward?

Despite the surge in interest in digital money, sports teams should be aware of the dangers that this new technology poses. The value of crypto-assets remains unpredictable, and the legal and regulatory landscape remains unsettled, despite the extraordinary rise. Due to the lack of consistency in this field, sports organizations will be forced to make agreements that hedge a contingency in order to save money if valuations shift. The emergence of crypto-assets, on the other hand, provides potential and excitement for the sporting world.

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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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New sports technology: 4 of our favorites

Jul 11, 2017 10:33:18 AM / by Arsène Rasoamanana posted in AfterDark Technologies, american football, Influencer, influencer marketing, marketing ideas, Mobile Virtual Player, MVP, rugby, skiing, snowboarding, sponsoring athletes, sponsorship, sports, sports innovation, sports marketing, sports marketing campaigns, sports sponsorship, sports technology, sports technology for athletes, sporttechie, surfing, Uncategorized, athlete influencer, Brand Endorsements, CTRL Eyewear, cycling, FlyPro drones

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New sports technology

Most aspects of our lives are now linked to the internet and electronics. Food delivery, social networks, shopping, entertainment, communication.. You name it. Sports are no exception to the rule. In fact, new sports technology might just be one of the most dynamic market as possibilities are pushed further everyday by both developers and athletes.

Our OpenSponsorship team is made of athletes as well as huge sports fans. Which is one of the reasons we love those new sports technology products so much. These products make athletes safer, help them reach their peak and improve competitiveness levels in every sports. We love being the connecting point between these great products/brands and our awesome OpenSponsorship athletes!

SportTechie has been an invaluable source of information for this article.

4 brands caught our eye through their amazing new sports technology:
I/ AfterDark Technologies: LED jerseys and ball for flag football

 

New sports technology, LED flag football Jersey and ball by AfterDarkTechnologies LED Flag football jersey and ball by AfterDarkTechnologies

 

These awesome jerseys and balls are definitely going to revolutionize flag football. Indeed, these kits will allow us to enjoy our favorite sport at any time of the day. No more cancelling a game because of the hour! Not only do these amazing kits let you play in the dark, these also include some useful features such as alternating colors on the QB's jersey, representing the rush count down. Also, its optic fiber flags to never miss your "tackle"!

Our idea for a campaign is to have a major league player from the NFL, NBA or NHL, to take a video playing some flag football with their friends, family, teammates or have kids play at one of their football camps! The NFL player could be Michael Vick who is now playing in the AFFL: American Flag Football League or Eric Berry (ballhawk safety and 2016 all-pro). Another idea could be finding an athlete from a Niche sport like Rowing, Skiing or Triathlon, who loves football, to test the product out, thus showing the appeal of the fastest growing sport to athletes (in college) to all.

II/ Mobile Virtual Player (MVP)

 

New sports technology: MVP (Mobile Virtual Player) Mobile Virtual Player Drive

 

The MVP is the future of american football and rugby training. Dummies have been used for decades in contact sports training as it reduces unnecessary injuries during practice. However, a moving target makes training more realistic, thus prepares athletes better to in-game action. This is one of the reasons MVP has been developed! The MVP also has been tested for tactical training: now preparing shooters better than ever! Our idea for MVP is to make a campaign is to have a player with a reputation for his tackling such as Clay Matthews (NFL linebacker) or Fulgence Ouedraogo (Flanker, France national team 7s and Union), record and post a 30 seconds video trying the dummy out in different game like settings.

III/ CTRL Eyewear: Tint changing glasses 

 

New sports technology: CTRL Eyewear, Tint changing glasses CTRL Eyewear's tint changing glasses

 

Vision is key to any sport, it is even more important for activities during which you are highly exposed to environment changes and sunlight such as cycling. CTRL Eyewear released a pair of glasses changing tint within 0.1sec depending on your environment's light. Finally, people are safer during situations such as: being exposed suddenly to very bright light. Or on the contrary, riding through a dark zone right after having the sun in your face.

Our idea for a campaign is for a skier/snowboarder or a cyclist such as Travis Rice or Cam Zink to record a close angle video while riding down a mountain to show how quickly and accurately the glasses change tint (from the sunny top to a dark valley for example).

IV/ FlyPro Drones

 

New sports technology: FlyPro's XEagle Sport, smartwatch controlled drone New sports technology :Fly Pro's XEagle Sport smartwatch controlled drone

 

FlyPro revolutionizes the drone industry for athletes and sports enthusiasts with its smartwatch controlled drones. No more worrying about your filming: just focus on your activity! This is like having a photographer following you around. It makes it easier than ever to record your best feats no matter where you are and if you are alone! This helps you keeping your followers up to date and content going at all times.
Our idea for a campaign is to have one or more snow or water sports athletes such as Gus Kenworthy or Kelia Moniz taking the drone for a ride and post curated highlights of it on their social media!

If you are a brand sign up for free here to access our roster of 2600+ athletes, teams and events.

If you are an athlete then sign up for a free account here and start applying to some of the awesome campaigns posted by our brands 

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