Tips to Help You Attain Youth Sports Sponsorships for your Team
Youth sports are an integral part of every community. Getting kids involved in sports can improve academics, build self-esteem, foster problem solving skills, and even teach conflict resolution skills. Not to mention, it’s just a fun way for kids to interact with one another and foster friendships.
However, as great as it is, it comes with expenses. If you are a coach or manager of a youth sports team, then you know the only viable way to keep those kids in safe competition is by seeking sponsors. Let’s take a look at some of the ways that you can get those sponsors behind the team.
- Know What You Want – You can’t expect a business to sponsor your team if you don’t even know exactly what you need. Call a meeting with all the coaches, managers and active parents that are involved with your team. Discuss what the team needs and how much it will likely cost. For example: Uniforms, equipment, transportation, etc. Once you have established your basic needs, you need to decide which types of businesses you want to approach. Make sure, whenever possible, that your prospective sponsors reflect the values of your sports organization.
- Offer The Sponsors Great Benefits – When you approach a business and ask them to sponsor your team, they are going to want to know what you can do for them. Sure a few businesses will consider it charity, but most of them will want a mutually beneficial partnership. So decide what you can offer them. We have all seen youth teams with a company’s name on their jerseys, and something like this should be included. But, try to get inventive. Offer to promote the business through social media, make a banner that can be unfurled at every game, or have the team hand out flyers. Don’t be afraid to ask the sponsor what they would like from you as well. Finding a solution that is good for both of you is the key.
- Appoint a Marketing or Development Representative – Youth sports sponsorship may seem trivial, but having someone who can focus some attention on this component can really payoff. Anytime you approach a company for sponsorship, you are entering into a kind of sales negotiation. Find a person that can be the face of your organization, building and fostering these relationships. Have them handle all initial and ongoing sponsor meetings. If your team decides to promote the sponsor on social media your Marketing Rep can monitor the site to make sure you are following through on the benefits you promised your sponsors.
- Think Local – Franchises are great. However they may have to seek corporate permission to enter into an agreement with you. This can mean weeks or even months of waiting time for your answer, which will too often be “no.” So, whenever possible, approach locally owned businesses with your sports sponsorship proposal. In addition to fewer corporate hoops, the small business owners are more invested in the community. Consequently, they are the ones that are more likely to benefit from the team's events.
- Consider a Team Website – Sure, your team may use social media, but you should consider a sports website that is dedicated to your sports organization and provides more in depth marketing information. You can build your own site, but a professional site could add the appeal you need to land that sponsor. There is no substitute for contacting a sponsor in person. However, if your team has a website with a “Become a sponsor” banner, business owners in your community can be directed there if you reach out by way of a sports sponsorship letter or email.