The recent global pandemic and rapid spread rate of Covid19 has had vast and unmeasurable implications on our businesses, social lives and sports activities. In addition, before we start to think of our sports clubs as merely the weekend activity we can, or cannot live without, depending on what celebrity you want to follow, remember, there are many that, for most professionally managed clubs, are fully employed. Spare a thought for the caterers, administrators, function staff, groundskeepers, cooks and waiters. The list goes on.
That’s not to say only the big, expensive, lavish clubs with the ‘presidents’ off road Porsche out the front get hit with the impacts of Covid-19, all levels of sport, from grassroot volunteer clubs and semi permanently managed clubs have, in some way been financially impacted by these unprecedent times.
Financially maintaining a club through a crisis is, as most managers would agree, difficult and cannot often be achieved without significantly reducing the expenses sheet.
The woes of regular income, such as membership, can have the greatest impact, since this can be the most regular source for most clubs, and since the current national regulations (exc some states) prohibits most sports from taking place, there lye the current catastrophe being faced today by our sports clubs.
However, there are solutions that, if addressed correctly and managed accordingly, will negate the financial impacts your club just might be facing. Sponsorship.
Sponsors would arguably generate the second largest income for a small sports club. We aren’t talking the Pies and Bombers here, although the AFL’s annual sponsorship revenue alone is amount to $168 million, but for small clubs, its vital to continue to bring value to the table for your adoring sponsors to ensure a stable income can be maintained, and greater than that, to ensure your club can prosper and deliver on the other side of the crisis.
To keep and maintain sponsorship, you would need to understand why a business would sponsor a club in the first place. Generally, there are four reasons your local supermarket, TAB or business owner would sponsor their local sports club, let’s break it down:
The first three reasons all relate to the sponsor feeling a sense of belonging. It is important to understand that a “sense of belonging” is a basic need and that your club needs to ensure that for all sponsors as part of any sponsorship package this sense of belonging is created between the club and the sponsor. This equates to a sponsor that is more likely to assist the club to achieve its goals over the long term.
The fourth reason a business would look to sponsor your club is for financial gain. For a majority of businesses, sponsorship will be one of their first list of expenses that will be cut, but if your sponsor feels that they have been supported by your club, they may not be so quick to withdraw their funds.
Here are some ideas to continue to build your relationship with your sponsor and return the support:
The promoted message is of togetherness, community, and strength as one. This can further drive a positive culture that sport is built on and brings communities together, people from the same street, the same neighborhood, the same country, and from around the world supporting the same team and the same athletes.
Let’s use this to support our sponsors who have supported us.