By Dario Ravasio
Sponsorship for football clubs is one of the most important ways to monetize your fans.
- The question is, why you find most money going to certain clubs over the total exclusion of the rest?
Because sponsors are always searching for those football properties which can demonstrate leverage over their fans. Sponsorship follows the fans. If you want sponsors to fall over each other, demonstrate the ability to fill your stadium through the season.
- So how can I look for fans?
Getting fans and mobilising them towards your cause can actually be done with a small budget. It can all start with basic manpower and a little bit of technology that even the poorest club can afford. But to do that you need a well organized plan and a lot of passion and enthusiasm. With these last both you can get the first very loyal fans, these very fans will become your PR and bring in more fans. The trick is building a relationship with them. That’s why in the biggest football team of the world there is always communication between the most loyal fans and the club. Is not unusual to see the club asking for fans opinion before taking very important decisions.
There is a big recession, the economy is going bad, especially in Europe (motherland of football), so getting a sponsor is even harder nowadays. But do not beg, simply prove that the sponsor will benefit. When you beg it means you have nothing to offer in return, but if you have a full stadium demonstrating your fans participation the sponsor will get from the relationship with your club. The sponsors will understand they can reach a lot of people and you will sooner get sponsors on board.
- How do I start searching for a sponsor?
Start locally looking for sponsors. If you’re a small club is hard to get sponsored by a big bank or an air company by going to talk at the headquarter! The chance of getting their attention is very minimal unless you are a big club. And if you’re a big club you don’t even have to bother cause they will come to you. If you are a small club you should go first to your locality, to local banks, local companies ecc. Demonstrating them you are going to benefit both. Remember that sponsorship is not a donation, it is a give and take.
Sponsorship can start from small to big items and below are some examples:
- Stadium bill boards sponsorship
- Home Shirt Sponsorship
- Away Shirt Sponsorship
- Youth Team Sponsors
- Pitch Side Advertising
- Player Sponsorship
- Match Ball Sponsorship
- Programme Adverts
- Website Sponsorship
- Community activities sponsorship
If you want to get sponsored get fans first. Build a relationship with them. Then go out and search out for a sponsor demonstrating the power and the influence you might have on your fans. Start with locally branch and then climb to the headquarter while your club is getting bigger.