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How To Use Stadium Advertising and Arena Marketing To Grow Brand Awareness

If you’ve ever been to a sporting event of any kind—from a tee ball game all the way to the Superbowl—you know that these events draw diverse crowds all coming together to cheer on their team. It’s not by chance that sports stadium and field advertising is a universal occurrence across sports regardless of level of play. If you are looking to get your brand in front of a large, diverse audience, sports stadium and arena marketing is the way to go.

What is Sports Stadium or Arena Advertising and Field Marketing?

Because there are billions of people across the world who enjoy watching sports, there is endless opportunity for marketing to this audience. There is no avenue on the planet that attracts a larger following made up of a more diverse variety of people than sports events do. Sports arenas are a marketer’s gold mine.

Sports stadium and field advertising are marketing and advertising campaigns that take place within a stadium or field. Depending on the type of event and the size of the venue, companies have the opportunity to advertise in a huge variety of ways.

Advertising your company or brand in a stadium allows for endless creative possibilities to attract business. In a small-town setting, you might sponsor a little league team and have your business name on a weatherproof sign along the outfield fencing. Or maybe you can have your name added to a list of sponsors near the concession stand where your business name will see a lot of foot traffic. If you are a small business relying on local dollars, this is an excellent way to garner brand recognition among people who will support your company.

However, this same strategy is applicable all the way up to the national level. Every sports stadium or field has places where sponsors can be recognized or businesses can pay to have their ads placed. Think about the last time you went to a professional or semi-pro game or match. Do you remember seeing ads? Of course you do; they’re everywhere.

Businesses can have advertisements all over stadiums, arenas, and fields, from on the walls of a venue to on the screens during halftime or transition periods to signs on the corridor or even bathroom walls. No matter the size of your business, you can benefit from stadium and field advertising.

Types of Sports Venues that Offer Advertising

  • Professional Sports – NBA Arenas, NFL Stadiums, MLB Fields, NHL Arenas, Golf Courses
  • College Sports – Football Arenas, Basketball Arenas, Baseball Fields
  • Nascar Tracks
  • Soccer Fields
  • Minor League Baseball Fields
  • Local High School Sports

Benefits of Stadium Advertising

There is no energy like that felt inside of a stadium full of thousands of screaming fans. The passion, excitement, and total commitment of everyone in the stadium takes over. While this is an exhilarating experience for a sports fan and the players they’re cheering on, this is a dream come true for a business advertising within that stadium.

With all of the energy in the stadium, this is a perfect place to get your brand before the eyes of potential customers. When a customer sees your ad in a high-energy, passionate setting, they are not only likely to remember it, but they will have a more positive association with your brand, which is one of your primary marketing goals whether your business is huge or just starting out.

Stadium advertising, as stated above, gets your brand in front of dozens, hundreds, thousands, and even millions of potential customers. In many cases, you create content—anything as complex as a video or as simple as a sign design—just once, and you can reuse that same content for an entire season and reach new eyes every time there is a game or event at the place you’ve chosen to put up your ads.

This kind of advertising works continually day and night. You don’t have to worry about lighting or timing for people to see your ads. Stadium advertising can’t be thrown away, turned off, or ignored. It is right in front of your target audience potentially for hours at a time.

When you are advertising on a field or stadium, you know that you will reach people immediately. You don’t have to hope people will buy the newspaper where you took an ad out or that they’re listening to the radio station that you’re advertising on. You can know with certainty that the next time there’s an event at the stadium, your ad will be up, and hundreds of people will see it on the day it debuts.

Types of Sports Stadium and Field Advertising

When you’re looking into this kind of marketing, you will be met with a plethora of options to choose from. This is fantastic news for your brand, because it means you can showcase your company in different formats and locations around a stadium or arena.

When you think of traditional advertising at stadiums, you probably think of printed materials. Here are samples of time-tested low-tech advertising:

  • Banners on sidelines and walls
  • Ads in the restroom
  • Posters throughout concourses and halls
  • Stairway ads
  • Cupholders
  • Billboard Ads
  • Court branding and wraps
  • Branded areas (VIP lounges, smoker’s rooms, etc.)

In local or public outdoor arenas, your options are more limited, but you still have a lot of opportunity to present your brand to fans. Like at larger soccer or football fields, you can employ the use of banners or signs on the fences of local youth league teams. You can even pay to have ads under the complex sign or at concession stands.

But printed materials and branded areas aren’t the only way to effectively market your business at sports arenas. The larger and more modern the field or stadium, the more options you have for multimedia signage. With the advent of newer technologies and new stadiums popping up all over the world, businesses are no longer limited to signs and flyers or even jumbotron advertisements within NBA or college basketball arenas.

Just like with your website, one of your marketing goals is for your ads to be of value to your users. By directly benefitting customers through your marketing, you can connect with them in a more meaningful way than with a purely promotional sign.

You might utilize an ad to help fans find the best food options in the baseball stadium (or how to find your restaurant if you’re in that industry), finding the shortest line to leave once the event is over, merchandise delivery to their seats; the list is endless. Below are a few ideas for more modern stadium marketing:

  • Scoreboard and LED signs and advertising
  • TV visible signage (viewed both on-site and on broadcast television)
  • Sponsored events and brand experiences
  • Courtside digital banners at basketball or hockey games
  • Ad space in in-stadium apps, like food delivery apps

If you can provide a valuable experience to your audience with your marketing tactics, they are sure to remember you. The examples above are a great place to start, but when it comes to stadium and field advertising, the options are continuously expanding due to evolving technologies.

7 Tips to Get the Most from Your Stadium Ad

Having the ability to advertise in a stadium during a college football or basketball game, or during a professional sport such as the NFL, NBA, or MLB game is a great advantage for your marketing efforts for your business. If done well, your ads will bring a lot of new business to your door. In order to get the most from your stadium advertising, there are a few key things you need to remember and implement.

Provide Value to the Customer

If your ad can provide value to a potential customer, they will not only remember your brand, but they will be more inclined to believe that the products or services you offer will offer them value as well.

Whether your ad is on a beer cup or you bought space on the stadium’s food-ordering app, make sure that whatever you are putting money toward will serve the user.

Be Consistent

Your brand’s look needs to be the same across all channels from your stadium ads to your site or storefront. Consistency will help users recognize your brand when they see you online or in other settings long after the game is over.

Get to the Point

Make sure your advertisements are clear about who you are and what you do. Funny ads are great for getting people’s attention, but how many times have you recalled a hilarious commercial unable to recall what was actually being advertised? You don’t want this to happen with your ads, especially since you have such a great opportunity to get your message out to so many people at once.

Place Your Ad Where It Will Be Seen

Double check your contract to ensure that you know exactly when and where your ad will be displayed. Can you imagine how awful it would be if you misread the fine print, and your ad was placed in a dark corner of the stadium where it wouldn’t get any attention? Make sure your ad will be in a visible place and, if it’s digital, that it will be seen at the appropriate times.

Utilize Social Media

Even at sporting events, fans are glued to their phones. This is a great thing for businesses marketing themselves at games or matches, because that means consumers have direct access to your online presence. Your social media needs to be up-to-date, aesthetically appealing, and consistent with your brand’s voice so that customers can check you out after they see your ads in the stadium or on the field.

Create Emotional Connections

Sporting events are highly emotional activities before, during, and after the event takes place. Build off of that energy by using your ad to create emotional connections with your audience. If your ad can touch customers in a meaningful way, they will remember you and look to you when they need whatever product or service you provide.

Advertise Often

Imagine how silly it would be to print your logo on one hamburger wrapper at the stadium. You’d never make that business move. In the same way, don’t run one ad throughout the course of the game. Advertise often so your business can get the attention of people many times throughout the night.

In addition to using repetitive advertising as a marketing technique, running your ad multiple times during a game is necessary because people might miss your ad the first one or two times it’s run. With all of the excitement surrounding their team, they need to see and hear your ad more than just a few times for your message to sink in.

How to Design a Great Ad

Having the advertising space at a stadium is great, and if you utilize our tips above on how to get the most out of your ad, you’re halfway there. But all of that will be fruitless labor if your ad design isn’t appealing. Designing a great ad can be done when you follow these seven tips:

Limit Colors

A sports stadium or field has so many things to stimulate the senses: loud fans, the smell of stadium food, and bright lights, to name a few. Your ad doesn’t need to assault the fans’ senses further by pummeling them with a huge array of colors.

Limit the number of colors that you use in your ads. The more colors you include, the longer it will take the audience to process your ad. Keep it simple and limit yourself to two or three colors.

Make Use of Negative Space

Following the same logic of using only a few colors, we encourage you to embrace negative space in your ad. The empty space in your ad makes it easier for customers to take in your ad and understand what you’re trying to communicate. Too many words or pictures on an ad clutters your image and make it more difficult to understand your message.

Use Your Logo

Using your logo is essential to good ad design. This builds brand recognition among the audience. A logo can communicate just as much or more than words can, and it helps customers remember you outside of the stadium.

Be Original

They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, but that does not apply to stadium advertising. You only have a small window of time—or a small space on a banner or sign—to market yourself. An original ad prevents confusion, solidifies your brand identity, and establishes credibility with fans.

Be Clear

Your ad should be engaging but concise. When your ad is over, the consumer should be able to articulate who you are, what you offer, and where they can go to get your services.

Tailor It to Your Audience

Sports fans are a fun and wild crowd. This opens up a lot of doors for crazy, funny, and captivating advertising. Tailoring your ads to your audience is a sure-fire way to create something memorable.

Think about the excitement surrounding Superbowl ads. These commercials are so hyped up because they are hilarious, extremely original, and are perfect for the setting. Take a page from these ad creators’ handbooks and create content that is made for sports fans in their setting, and you’ll have made something that people are talking about for a long time after the game.

Provide Interaction

A good ad doesn’t just end with the design. Allow your audience to interact with your advertising. This can look like a few things depending on the technologies you have at your fingertips, but it can be as simple as having a branded photo booth, a baseball throw, or other interactive experience. When you can physically engage your audience, you have created something that they will remember.

Stats on the Benefits of Stadium and Field Advertising

Just like with any other type of marketing, stadium and field advertising is all about bringing in business. Studies have shown the benefits of this type of advertising, and below are a few numbers showing why you should look into it for yourself.

  • Seven out of ten spectators can correctly identify a product that had been advertised to them at a sporting event.
  • 130 million unique fans attend professional and college game annually.
  • 61% of the audiences at stadiums and arenas are men, making digital video advertising especially effective if your target audience is male.
  • 47% of stadium audiences are between the ages of 18 and 34.
  • About 18% of American adults see a digital screen display at a stadium monthly, and those numbers will only continue to grow.

As you can see, the numbers are on your side, and they keep growing the more digitized stadium advertising becomes.

Stadium and Field advertising is an extremely effective way to market your company and build brand awareness with a large and diverse audience. Now that you’ve seen why this is a smart move for your business and how you can create and take advantage of great advertising, what are you waiting for?