Wide world of sports remains a sponsorship play in 2013

January 22, 2013 by Mike Goff

In an age where our lifestyle dictates everything from how we spend our money and time to what products we choose to how we watch our favorite TV shows, companies are challenged to find the best strategies to sell their brands’ goods and services.

Turns out the lure of a live, unfiltered sporting event remains a key marketing play in 2013.

According to a recent report in Advertising Age, North American companies will spend almost $20 billion on sponsorships. Close to $15 billion of that will be spent on sports marketing – four to five times more than any other lifestyle marketing outlet and six percent more than was spent last year in the same industry.

Sports sponsorship continues to be relevant. But companies find themselves increasingly dependent upon their knowledge of consumer lifestyles to find the best fit for their dollars.

Simply put, lifestyle marketing is the matching of brands with consumer needs and desires. Adjusting to the consumer’s lifestyle instead of expecting the customer to adjust to the brand will require more sophistication and savvy among even the best brands. Discipline will be the key when searching for a consumer sweet spot and then associating those wants and desires with a particular product or service. And differentiating your brand from what other brands are doing – good luck with that.

What’s important to know about lifestyle marketing, specifically in the area of sports?

The most successful marketers know their consumers’ wants, needs and desires.

They will be able to deftly merge sports and entertainment with technology to target those consumers.

And they will target previously untapped sources like high school sports and Olympic sports to make a solid connection with their consumers.

While the DVR and on-demand media may be the way we watch our favorite movies and television shows, the passion, excitement and connection to a live sporting event remains one of the strongest connections companies will have to consumers in 2013.