Sports Sponsorships: Understanding Sponsorship and How to Exploit it

Dennis Faurbye

Student thesis: Master thesis


Based on the worldwide growth of sponsorship, and its increasing importance in the world of sports, this thesis explores how sponsorship in general, and sports sponsorship in particular, can be of benefit companies in reaching communication objectives. It is explained what a sponsorship is, and this can be used as a communicational tool for companies to improve awareness, attitude, sales and image. Several definitions of sponsorship is provided, the most broad of which identifies sponsorship as a mutually beneficial arrangement that consists of the provision of resources of funds, goods and/or services by an individual or body to an individual or body in return for a set of rights that can be used in communications activity, for the achievement of objectives for commercial gain. Aspects of sponsorship theory such as Rights, Activation, and Fan Involvement is presented and used to answer the question of how sponsorship can be beneficial. The key to this is to understand the limitations of sponsorship, and that it should be followed by a well-founded activation strategy that aims to make the consumer understand the correlation between the sponsorship and the sponsored activity. If the consumer fails to recognize the relation between sponsor and activity, the message of the sponsorship is lost, and no goodwill will be created toward the sponsor. However if the message is delivered with success, the goodwill that is created has to power to a bond between brand and consumer, that cannot be established through advertising.

EducationsMSc in Brand and Communications Management, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2016
Number of pages96