Sports marketing

Sports marketing is a subdivision of marketing which focuses both on the promotion of sports events and teams as well as the promotion of other products and services through sporting events and sports teams. It is a service in which the element promoted can be a physical product or a brand name. The goal is to provide the client with strategies to promote sports or to promote some other product, service, business or cause through sports. Sports marketing is also designed to meet the needs and wants of the consumers through exchange processes.[1] These strategies follow the traditional four "P"'s of general marketing Product, Price, Promotion and Place; another four "P"’s are added to sports marketing, relating to the fact sports are considered to be a service. The additional 4 P’s are: Planning, Packaging, Positioning and Perception. The addition of the four extra elements is called the "sports marketing mix."[2]

Sports marketing is an element of sports promotion which involves a wide variety of sectors of the sports industry, including broadcasting, advertising, social media, digital platforms, ticket sales, and community relations.[3]

Sports marketing is divided into three sectors. The first is the advertising of sport and sports associations such as the Olympics, Spanish Football league and the NFL, as well as sport teams like Real Madrid and the New York Yankees. The second concerns the use of sporting events, sporting teams and individual athletes to promote various products. The third category is the promotion of sports to the public in order to increase participation.

In the first case, the promotion is directly related to sports. In the second case, the products can but do not have to be directly related to sports. When the promotion is about sports in general, the use of this kind of strategy is called “Marketing of Sports.” When the promotion is not about the sports but sports events, athletes, teams or leagues are used to promote different products, the marketing strategy is denominated “Marketing through sports."[4] When the promotion is about increasing participation among the public, it is called "Grassroots Sports Marketing."[3] To promote the products or services, the companies and associations use different channels such as sponsorships of teams or athletes, television or radio advertisement during the different broadcast sports events and celebrations, and/or advertisement on sporting venues.

“Street marketing of sports” considers sports marketing through billboards on the street and also through urban elements (street lighters and sidewalks, etc.) to help promote and gain publicity during major worldwide sporting events such as the Football World Cup, the Olympic Games, or the Super Bowl.[3]

Sports fans

Like all business sectors, sports businesses also rely on market segmentation to effectively market themselves.[5] Sport fans differ according to a number of attributes including motivations to attend sporting events,[6] emotional attachment,[7] economic attachment,[8] identity,[9] and loyalty.[10] These attributes also make sports different than other forms of entertainment as sport fans behave differently than consumers of other products and services.[11][12]

Attributes such as loyalty can be recognized through the contracts players and athletes sign with sports companies in which they get paid to wear or use their products in each game or sporting event. By doing so, the players and athletes and also their fans develop a loyalty for the products for a longer time.[2][13]