If you’ve decided to sponsor a sport (for example, MotoGP), and have gathered all the necessary information on teams and athletes, you might find yourself with one major question to answer – is it more beneficial to sponsor a team, or an individual?
Here, we’ve weighed up the pros and cons of each approach. Hopefully, it’ll provide some assistance if you’re making this crucial sports sponsorship decision.
Sponsoring a MotoGP team
Choosing to sponsor a MotoGP team can give you the opportunity to do business with the company that the team is direct emanation of – for example Honda, Yamaha, Ducati or Suzuki. These huge brands could then become your customers, allowing you to offer them your products or services.
Secondly, in terms of B2B marketing, the team may also make introductions between your brand and the various partners. And if customer loyalty is the goal, what better tool is there than helping a partner to do business with the other sponsors?
Another benefit is the facilities, such as the company museum or the racing department, that the team is likely to have and which can be used by sponsors in PR activities, product launches and other activation activities.
If we’re thinking about hospitality, passes, experiences and services provided by the team to their fanbase are always part of a sports sponsorship package. If you’re looking for a way to offer your guests and your best customers an unforgettable weekend of competitions, sponsoring a team could be the right way.This can, of course, also have great B2B benefits.
Another great thing about sponsoring a MotoGP (or indeed, any) team is the stability that it offers. Riders might suffer from injury, be involved in personal scandals, switch teams, or have to contend with any other manner of issue. On the contrary, teams have greater solidity and can therefore allow the possibility of planning long-term MotoGP sponsorship implementation activities with fewer risk factors.
Sponsoring a MotoGP rider
After having read the first part of this article, it might seem like sponsoring a team is always the best options – but of course, this might not be the case.
If we think about the immediate relationship that is available (for brands to leverage) between an athlete and their fanbase, we can see how the emotional connection that comes with a rider-based MotoGP sponsorship campaign might be very effective.
MotoGP fans are likely to feel a greater affinity with a rider than with their team, and the athlete in questions is likely to have the the availability, the charisma, and the fame that your potential customers immediately recognise. After all, when visiting a track a guest is much more likely to try to take a picture with a MotoGP rider – probably settling for a snap with a bike only when the rider is not available.
Now, let’s think about budgets. If you have a large budget for the MotoGP sponsorship campaign, by sponsoring a team you may be able to use images of the races and the riders themselves for a few days. The rider will have to wear the team uniform of the team, which is unlimited and can aid your communication – but be aware that personal endorsements (for example, “Valentino Rossi wins with X brand”) is not allowed – for this, you always need direct contract with the athlete in question.
In some cases the sponsor, in addition to funding the team, also decides to get into an agreement with the rider. These operations are quite common (examples include Fastweb with Valentino).
A careful use of VIP Village passes could also be a good way to sponsor a MotoGP rider – trying to amplify your hospitality operations, perhaps by organising a meet and greet, could also be a hugely beneficial part if your sports sponsorship campaign.
If you’re in the fortunate position of being able to activate both options that’s great. If not, start by looking at the budget and your hospitality needs. From this point you‘ll find the solutions that can give you the best results.
If you want to speak more about MotoGP sponsorship please don’t hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org