Sponsorship Strategy

The best-fitting sponsorship strategies happen with research. While getting the maximum return on a sponsorship investment is something that is best achieved with the help of sponsorship agency professionals, if the organizing committees know the right unique sponsorship stats, that can give them edge needed to boost the maximum return on a sponsorship investment.

The right sponsorship agency will absolutely have heavy experience in sponsorship and experiential consulting, but successful organizing committees should be up-to-date on industry trends. Here are 5 surprising sponsorship statistics that excellently can be applied towards the sake of boosting your sponsorship strategy.  


1. NBA Sponsorship Spending Reached Over $1 Billion in the 2017-2018 Season

This season’s sponsorship spending is higher than ever, reaching a total of $1.12 billion for the 2017-2018 season. These excellent results in sponsorship spending come from the NBA’s recent use of jersey patch advertising. Fans barely notice, if at all, but the patches still effectively drive revenue. Furthermore, the sponsors do not have to be local. Teams this season are using jersey patch advertising from companies originating from anywhere in the world (ESP Properties, LLC., 2018).

Credit: Sponsorship.com

Team Sponsorships with Excellent Return on Investment

With the right, targeted approach, any brand can sponsor a team. And with that approach, any brand will see excellent revenue from a sponsorship.


2.  Top Sponsorship Categories Are Not Experiencing Growth

For example, Food & Beverages is among the top-spending sponsorship categories, and its Fortune 500 Sector Growth for 2014-2016 was at an unsatisfying -1.4%. The Healthcare category’s Fortune 500 Sector Growth for 2014-2016 looked the best at 12.6%, though too much may be being spent healthcare sponsorship to look seem worthwhile. Out of a dozen top sponsorship spenders, an average of 1.9% Fortune 500 Sector Growth for 2014-2016 was experienced (ESP Properties, LLC., 2018).

Credit: Sponsorship.com

Consider Long-Term Marketing Goals

Sponsorships are typically a long-term commitment, so sponsorship strategy should meet long-term branding goals, more than short-term promotions and the like. Not only does this streamline a sponsorship strategy, but the sponsorship is put to work towards better results over the next several years.  


3. College Athletics Sponsorship Spending Increased 4.5% in the 2017-2018 Season

College athletics sponsorship spending is projected to reach a total of $1.24 billion in 2018, which, according to ESP projections, is an increase of 4.5%. The most active sponsorship category for college athletics is Insurance, by far. State Farm takes the cake as the most active college athletics sponsor (ESP Properties, LLC., 2018).  

Target Your Sponsorships

As with any type of marketing, know what works for your audience. Once you know your audience, the results will be the best that they can be.


4. Cause Sponsorship Spending Reached Over $2 Billion in 2018

Also according to ESP research, cause sponsorship spending is projected to increase to 4.4% in 2018, bringing the 2018 cause sponsorship total to $2.14 billion. Retailers encompass the most active sponsorship category for causes, which replaced pharmaceutical companies (ESP Properties, LLC., 2018). The Retailers category is indeed a broad sponsorship category that may include many different types of retailers to fit the many different types of causes. Pharmaceutical companies see fewer results due to poorer targeting.

Know that Sponsorships Benefit Both Parties

Choosing to sponsor a cause not only feels good, but it benefits that brand. And, the more that a company is actually excited about a cause, the better results will be. Efforts will look more genuine, and, as a result, more attention will be given and paid to the brand.


5. Olympic Sponsorship Spending Reached Only $390M for PyeongChang

PyeongChang sponsorship spending reached only $390M (ESP Properties, LLC., 2018). I am saying only $390M because that is much less than the NBA spent this season, for example. That is also less than was spent for the NCAA. The reason spending was low was due to politics and PyeongChang’s remote location. Only certain large companies could afford sponsorship.

Sponsors & Organizing Committees Work Hand-in-Hand

Sponsors work hand-in-hand with organizing committees for the best results on both ends. If communication is lacking or unavailable on either end, then a sponsorship just cannot happen.

Work with a Sponsorship Agency to Boost Your Strategy

A quality sponsorship agency effectively advises organizing committees on sponsorship strategy and services for their event. Sponsorship agencies and organizing committees work hand-in-hand in order to successfully sponsor an event.

At Tandem Partnerships, we work to boost sponsorship strategy. We will partner with you to ensure maximum return on your sponsorship investment.



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  1. ESP Properties, LLC. (2018) Sponsorship Spending on the NBA Totals $1.12 Billion in 2017-2018 Season. Retrieved from http://sponsorship.com/Latest-Thinking/Sponsorship-Infographics/Sponsorship-Spending-on-the-NBA-Totals-$1-12-Billi.aspx.
  2. Andrews, Jim. (15 May 2018) The State of Sponsorship: An Unconventional SWOT Analysis in Two Parts. Retrieved from sponsorship.com/About/Sponsorship-Blogs/Jim-Andrews/May-2018/The-State-of-Sponsorship--An-Unconventional-SWOT-A.aspx.
  3. ESP Properties, LLC. (2018) Sponsorship Spending On College Athletics To Total $1.24 Billion In 2018. Retrieved from sponsorship.com/Latest-Thinking/Sponsorship-Infographics/Sponsorship-Spending-On-College-Athletics-To-Total.aspx.
  4. ESP Properties, LLC. (2018) Cause Sponsorship Spending To Total $2.14 Billion In 2018. Retrieved from sponsorship.com/Latest-Thinking/Sponsorship-Infographics/Cause-Sponsorship-Spending-To-Total-$2-14-Billion.aspx.
  5. ESP Properties, LLC. (2018) PyeongChang’s Sponsorship Picture. Retrieved from sponsorship.com/Latest-Thinking/Sponsorship-Infographics/PyeongChang-s-Sponsorship-Picture.aspx.

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