Attracting Sponsors for Your Youth Sports Organization

Tim Gusweiler
Getting local businesses and organizations to sponsor your league or team can be hard, time consuming work. Traditional methods like uniform sponsors, signs at your facilities, and special coupons for parents and players are tried and true methods for youth sports.
But new digital tools can be used to get new sponsors next season without doing a lot of extra work. You can also learn a lot from what college and professional teams do to get more sponsors.
Thinking beyond the outfield sign or jersey logo is important. Here’s a few creative ideas that might work for your league or team next season.

Allow a Sponsors to Support Reduced Registration Fees

The best sports sponsorships involve mutual benefits for the business and fans. What’s a great way to get the parents at your organization excited? Reduce the registration fees.
A local sponsor can help support the community by helping provide a reduced registration fee for the parents. Offer the opportunity for sponsors to reduce your registration fee by $5 or $10 by if they commit to sponsor your organization at a high level. Opportunities like this can be a great way for sponsors to know that they are making a direct impact on community members.
You can name the division after the sponsor, or include them as a sponsor on all of that age group's uniforms or apparel. Make sure that every parent knows that this sponsor made their contribution specifically to help fund the organization and reduce registration fees for all of the players.
💡PRO TIP: Include information about all of your different opportunities in your Sponsorship Letter.

Give Parents the Option to Sponsor During Registration

Finding can be difficult and time consuming. Calling businesses, sending emails before the season starts, or going door to door can take hours.
Before investing all of that extra time, make sure parents and community members know that any level of sponsorship helps. You need to also make it super easy for parents to sign up to sponsor when they register.
You can include a question during registration asking parents if they would like to sponsor during the season. Different levels can be included so that there are flexible options for parents.
a youth sports sponsorship option in an online registration form
Many sports programs have been able to find unexpected sponsors just by making sure parents know that any contribution helps improve the experiecne for players.

Official Umpire/Referee Sponsor

Referees and Umpires can become expensive, but they’re critical for your sports organization. Allow a sponsor to cover the costs (or contribute to the cost) of the referees or umpires.
The referees could wear a special shirt or hat recognizing the sponsor, and your referee training materials and registration forms could also thank the sponsor for their critical support.
Involvement is a critical part of your organization can be valuable for sponsors, because they feel like they are contributing to your success. It’s working for pro soccer leagues in Europe, and you can take a few of their tips and tricks.
The referees could wear a special shirt or hat recognizing the sponsor.

Send Sponsored Text Messages for Your Biggest Supporters

If you have a list of parent and coach emails and phone numbers that you use to keep everyone up to date, consider sending monthly text messages recognizing your biggest sponsors. This can offer big value for your sponsors, giving them direct access to the parents in the community.
Thinking about sending text messages to parents, coaches, and community members? Be sure to form a plan first.

Include your Largest Sponsors in the Design of Your Website

Website space is a valuable for sponsors. A few organizations we work with at Jersey Watch request that their most significant sponsors are included in their website design.
Your website gets valuable traffic from parents and community members. Let them know who your biggest sponsors are, and make sure to communicate to potential sponsors that space on your website is available.
youth sports sponsors on a website
Make sure to communicate to potential sponsors that space on your website is available.

Ask your Sponsors For Ideas!

What if your sponsors made all of the decisions for your sports organization? If they could do whatever they wanted, what would they do to support the community?
That’s a helpful question to ask when you solicit new sponsorships, or renew your sponsorships from last year. Maybe they have unique ideas that you’ve never thought about in your traditional packages.

Additional Resources

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