It would be almost frivolous to discuss sponsorship trends for 2021. If last year has taught us anything, it’s to live with a high level of uncertainty and to know that planning of any kind has been a fraught affair in the sport and entertainment industry.
According to the NPD Group, “Basketball has fallen from its height of being an important streetwear product to really out of fashion right now,” as the performance segment has declined over multiple years and no sport-specific shoe category has shown any growth in more than three years.
Athlete activism now focus more than ever on racial injustice, brought forward by the tragicdeath of George Floyd, and gender equality, which received much attention thanks to the 2019 World Cup U.S. Women’s National Team win.
Here are a few past initiatives involving brands that have supported sports-related causes.
Gaming is a massive market, valued at between $100 and $150 billion worldwide. As the audience for streaming games and competitive gaming—known as electronic sports, or esports—has grown, so has brands’ interest. This portion of the gaming market has reportedly reached upwards of 350 million people globally.
Brands have longunderstood the power of music to create emotional connections. As such, music is second only to sports in terms of sponsorship spending. Here is part one of our sponsorship trends in the music space.
Corporate sponsorship hasn’t always been welcome in the music world as it was seen as “selling out.” Music events are now much friendlier to corporate sponsors, and brands are using sponsorship opportunities to tap into consumer passion through music.
Sponsorship is a healthy communication medium, and many brands are starting to see the value in it. New sponsorship categories can bring additional revenue to rights holders. Not surprisingly, many new entrants to sponsorship are from disruptive business models that are coming to maturity.