Sports have, for a long time, been an American staple that almost every single person can relate to. It is not limited to just in the United States either. Around the world, fans are showing their appreciation for all types of sports. Regardless of the type of sport, there are millions, if not billions, of fans who love to show off their favorite fan gear either on their person, around their homes, on their vehicles, etc. The possibilities are endless. As you sit in your next marketing meeting, trying to come up with ideas, consider catering to the sports fanatic for your next branding venture. You will be pleasantly surprised to find that it is a marketable and receptive group to target and help make your business that much more successful.
Who is the Sports Fanatic?
The sports fanatics are the die hard fans who supports their team(s). They love the game, indeed, but they also love being able to proudly display their love for the game. This can come in the form of clothing, accessories, art, stickers, you name it. The draw to sports is the fundamentals of the game, the appreciation for the athletes and the overall environment of being a sports fan. You can converse with other fans and build a community. You can walk through a store and see someone else wearing your team and both of you have this unspoken bond, simply because you share the same taste in teams. Why does this matter? Turns out, there is a huge market for sports fanatics. They may not be full blown athletes themselves, but they certainly appreciate the craft and excitement behind the sport. When they love something, they also love to collect memorabilia and sport the gear. It really is a no-brainer when it comes to marketing to this type of customer. Sports are so universal that it literally appeals to any person of any age.
How to Market to Sports Fanatic?
There are certainly many ways that businesses can cater to a sports fan and engage them with their product. Take a look at some effective ones that prove to be successful:
Incorporating Technology – Major corporations such as Verizon offer services known as NFL Mobile where customers can gain access to live streams, scores and updates about their favorite teams via an app. Verizon is a cell phone service provider, yet they are ahead of the game by offering their sports fan customers a chance to stay engaged with their teams. Many businesses can take a page out of Verizon’s book of marketing strategies.
Promotions – Especially during Super Bowl season, fast food chains like Pizza Hut or Buffalo Wild Wings offer bundled packages that encourage people to use them for catering their big football parties. They know that sports fans tend to need large amounts of good food when throwing a party so they offer promotions with hopes of gaining their business.
Athlete Endorsements – Although it can be expensive and require a sponsorship, having a respected and loved athlete endorse your product and speak for it can do wonders for your brand. Consumers automatically relate to the athlete and trust that whatever they are using or selling will probably work well for them. Hence, think Michael Phelps and his sponsorship with Subway. People equate his athletic physique and ability with food from Subway, thus boosting their brand and sales.
The types of sports you choose to target all has a lot to do with timing. In the Fall, the catered audience may be football fanatics. It is purposeful due to the NFL season in full swing and how popular it is with consumers. If it were March, you would want to gear your marketing around college basketball to reiterate “March Madness.” Every four years, there is a hosting of the Olympics and this brings people all over the world together, regardless of sports background. Depending on what is in season, you can definitely gain interest with sports fans as long as you are mindful of the timing. It will make or break your efforts in centering your marketing and branding around the sports fanatic.
Why Branding is Important to the Sports Fanatic
Branding is important to a sports fan. Franchises build their brands off the foundation of the fan experience. Any other businesses wanting to follow suit should consider a few things when figuring out the importance of catering to a sports fan. First, when using a franchise’s logo (with permission of course), businesses want to be sure that they get it right. No distortions. No odd colors. True fans know the difference. Nike and Reebok have exclusive rights to NFL logos and team apparel. Sports fans know that they can receive authentic products from trusted companies that deliver quality. Presence on social media is another way to engage with a sports fan. A local coffee shop might ask followers to send in photos of themselves wearing their favorite team gear in the spirit of the Olympics. This type of presence shows your sports fan customers that you, too care about their favorite sport and offer ways for them to participate with you. The collaboration and engagement of your customer
It is, without a doubt, obvious that sports fans are a great market to appeal your next marketing and branding venture to. They are relatable and share a very common interest with others: the love of sports. You are not limited to fans of professional teams either. Sports fans also include enthusiasts who love to play the sports themselves. Businesses were created specifically for these individuals such as Dick’s Sporting Goods or Sportsman’s Warehouse. City recreational businesses were created to facilitate citizen, self-generated teams to play one another in sports such as soccer and volleyball. Everywhere you look, there is a sports fanatic somewhere. It is time for your business to capitalize on this avenue and market your product or mission around it. Everything that your customer sees tells a story. What story do you want to tell?