May 31, 2018 at 12:00 AM
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Definitions for Defining Your Sponsorship Terms

Developing your sponsorship package can be tough if you don’t speak sponsor (aka you’re not able to effectively communicate what a brand may expect to provide or receive in return). The sponsorship glossary below will help you begin to think through some of the options that you can provide within your sponsorship pitch to help sponsors effectively understand the scope of your opportunity within commonly used frameworks.

Sponsorship Levels - The designation granted to a sponsor by way of their involvement. In descending order, examples include:

  • Naming Right Sponsor Sponsor receives the right to rename a facility or venue for a designated period of time.
  • Example: Enterprise Rent-A-Car recently bought naming rights to the home of the NHL’s St. Louis Blues.
  • Title Sponsor- Brand name is integrated into event name and logo at all times
  • Example: PGA Golf Tournament named AT&T Byron Nelson
  • Presenting Sponsor- Sponsor/brand name receives recognition alongside event name with the word “presents”, “presented by”,”brought to you by” or “powered by” but does not replace official title
  • Example: MLB All-Star Game presented by T-Mobile
  • Official Sponsor - Includes primary sponsor ( usually most basic level of sponsorship) major sponsor, or basic sponsorship rights that do not include naming rights, title or presenting
  • Example: Barefoot Wine is an official sponsor of Bonnaroo Music Festival
  • Supplier- Typically below an official sponsor – Exchanges product or service for designated recognition
  • Example: Dick’s Sporting Goods is an official supplier of is an official sponsor of Little League World Series
  • Licensee- Manufacturer receives the right to produce and distribute official/licensed merchandise
  • Example: Loot Crateis the exclusively licensed subscription box of the MLB

  • You can use SponsorPitch to benchmark against a database of 50,000 deals sortable by each of these sponsorship levels.

    Category Exclusivity - This is the sole sponsor within a brand category of service or product. No other competitor within the category may sponsor the event. For example, Pepsi is the “exclusive” provider of soft drinks at Yankees Stadium. Typically, this will be coined with the status/phrase “official and exclusive ________ of the property”

  • Example: Honda is the official vehicle of the NHL

    Think there’s only a handful of exclusive sponsor categories? Think again. SponsorPitch can be used to sort by over 450 different business categories that are most commonly defined within sponsorship.

    Term - The length of the sponsorship deal including the date that the sponsorship agreement officially begins and ends. Not all sponsorships start when a contract is signed. Due to previous sponsorship agreements, some may not officially begin for months or even years after a deal is signed.

    Licensing - Granting the sponsor the right to use the property’s marks – terminology, logo and other trademark usage under brand guidelines. This commonly applies to consumer product goods that may use marks to create a special product or exclusive offer.

    Pass-Through Rights - Allowing sponsor to involve approved vendors, typically assuming they do not compete with other exclusive sponsors of the event.

  • Example: 7-eleven joining Dew Tour via Mountain Dew partnership

    Sponsorship Fee/Rights Fee - Cash and non-cash transactions asked of the sponsor. This should include specific deadlines according to the property’s calendar of deliverables In-Kind Sponsorship - exchange of goods or services in lieu of financial obligations

    Assets/Benefits - A listing of what specifically the company will receive as an official sponsor and when. Assets may often be the same across sponsors, but never be afraid to create unique assets for each sponsor depending on their business objective or audience. Examples include:

  • On-site: Signage containing sponsor ID, crowd or camera facing placement, jumbotron, billboards, banners, fencing, defined activation space, gifting or fan promotions, product giveaways, sampling, etc.
  • Marketing & Media: inclusion in press releases, mailings, cross-promotion, digital assets such as social media, text messaging, email marketing, etc.
  • Hospitality: tickets, parking, food, amenities, VIP experience, after-parties, meet and greets, luxury box, giveaways, sweepstakes, employee benefits, etc.
  • Advertising: TV coverage, print ad space, programs, magazine, digital ads, etc.

    Media Buy - The required allocation of spend devoted to media. With larger properties, an incremental media spend or buy with the broadcast partner may be required as a condition to the sponsorship deal.

    Renewal - Specifying the terms by which subsequent terms of sponsorship will be offered, negotiated or undertaken.

  • Escalator: A term stipulating the annual percentage or dollar amount that a sponsorship will increase each year if/when renewed.
  • Right of First Refusal or ROFR: This requires the sponsorship to be presented for renewal to the original sponsor before selling it to a competitor within the category
  • Right of First Negotiation or ROFN: This sets a deadline for a new agreement to be reached with the original sponsor before the opportunity can be shopped to competing sponsors

    These are just a few basic terms to be thinking about as you prepare your pitch. Got others? Add them in comments or tweet @SponsorPitch

    Powered by the world's largest online sponsorship database, SponsorPitch allows users to track all levels of sponsorship deals and insights in real time. SponsorPitch speeds up the process of making data-driven sponsorship connections by providing an on demand, always updating, self-service research platform.