March 5, 2021
Published by
Mobii Systems
3 ways a venue’s sponsor brand can leverage their naming rights

Take a look at some of the most popular sports venues in North America and you’ll see why they are the prime real estate for sponsorship deals: the MetLife Stadium in New York City, the Scotiabank Arena in Toronto, T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, the BBVA Stadium in Houston… and the list goes on. 

It’s a smart investment to pay for the naming rights of a venue that usually welcomes thousands of people. It’s a way to push a brand’s name to the top of their minds as they enter through their gates and enjoy the matches from their branded seats.

Before 2020, the multimillion dollar deals that corporations have paid for this type of exposure ranged between $3 million to $20 million per season, which is the case of the Citi Field in Queens, New York. Usually, these deals consider the naming rights to last for up to 20 years, granting the sponsoring brand enough time to make a footprint and the stadium to guarantee a steady source of income during that period. 

Which is why the Covid-19 pandemic has posed a threat to this usually sweet deal. With restrictions for events with mass audiences probably lasting for the rest of 2021 in most of Canada and the U.S., these usually solid investments are losing valuable ROI for sponsoring brands whose contracts are still running for five, ten, or twenty more years. 

Luckily, there is still a way they can leverage their sponsorship investment: fan engagement through technology. Here’s three ways this is possible:

  1. In-stadium 360 VR/AR experiences: through their phones and hardware like VR/AR goggles, consumers can have a branded interaction with other fans or their sports idols. If they are allowed inside with a limited capacity, these interactions can still happen and use the hybrid real-life/digital model to do so.
  1. Off-season engagement: Users can be kept engaged with a venue’s sponsor brand even during off-season. With gamified interactions on their mobile devices, fans can play and earn points with sponsored trivia (that can even offer sponsored rewards, like swag or memorabilia).
  1. On-demand branded streaming: With OTT streaming technology, based on strategically placed cameras that allow specific camera angles to choose from, users can have an in-house experience from their own homes –branded, of course, in the same way as the venue’s sponsor brand.

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