Reframing the Business Case for Women’s Professional Sports


We’ve all heard the numbers: “Less than 1% of worldwide funding in corporate sports activities sponsorships is directed to girls’ sports activities.”
“Just four% of sports activities media coverage is about women’s sports activities.”
Yet consistent with recent Nielsen studies, almost 85% of standard sports enthusiasts of their biggest sports markets say they’re interested in women’s sports activities. And approximately 65% of the populace is interested in as a minimum one’s ladies’ game. For company sponsors, women’s sports leagues and the media, this looks like a possibility disguised as trouble. In fact, on the LPGA, extra new sponsors have signed on over the last few years than at another time in our 70-yr records.
Why is that? The athletes and girls’ sports activities leagues are doing their component. The first-rate of competition, coupled with engaging personalities, is creating compelling sports activities and entertainment. The FIFA Women’s World Cup showcases the amazing bodily skills and mental stamina of the arena’s pleasant woman football gamers. The WNBA these days introduced a thrilling new media associate to convey extra lovers to the sport. There’s Serena Williams’ dominance in tennis, Simone Biles’ athletic artistry in gymnastics, Chloe Kim’s younger strength in snowboarding and so forth. For the LPGA, a defining moment for our recreation happened when the satisfactory woman golfers teed it up at the 2016 Olympics – the primary time golfing turned into played within the Olympics in 112 years.

Beyond sheer sporting excellence, there’s any other critical reason why girls’ sports are attracting extra sponsors. Increasingly, we’re finding our sponsors are reframing and expanding the enterprise case for women’s sports. They see it as a manner to distinguish their brands and make bigger their core values of variety, inclusion, and leadership.
While sports sponsorship choices have commonly been made commonly in advertising and marketing or community relations, we are finding new allies in the C-suite: the executives in the price of human sources, sustainability, and diversity & inclusion. These leaders remember that when it comes to competing for talent, winning clients, attracting traders and constructing their brand, the whole lot their enterprise helps and invests in matters. Stakeholders – customers, employees, buyers, suppliers – are paying attention to whether or not an enterprise’s phrases and movements are aligned. And that’s where sports sponsorship comes in.
More than Sponsorship . . . A Values Statement
Most groups have fixed corporate values that outline their culture and form their emblem. While each employer says, “we fee diversity and inclusion,” far fewer organizations have managed to translate their values into an aggressive advantage. Those which have been capable of internalizing and replicate their values in the whole lot they do, consisting of their sponsorship dollars.
Today, extra main groups are looking at all their moves – and spending – for alignment with their values and commercial enterprise imperatives. For businesses devoted to variety and inclusion, sponsoring girls’ pro sports is a high quality, visible extension of their dedication to possibilities for girls and women.
Sports as an Incubator for Leadership
Every organization desires to hire and increase employees with management capacity. Sports have always been incubators of character and leadership. Female athletes can be effective function fashions for girls and boys; women and men.
Notre Dame Basketball Coach Muffet McGraw stated it well: “We don’t have enough woman role models. We do not have enough seen women leaders. We don’t have enough girls in electricity. Where higher than in sports activities… for ladies too. . . Watch for how ladies lead.”

Under the leadership of Commissioner Mike Whan, the LPGA has constructed its emblem around the accessibility of our international athletes and creatively supporting our sponsors’ goals. Before each LPGA event, our gamers acquire a “partner profile” with facts approximately the identify sponsor, pattern social media messages and even the names of individuals to understand with written thank-you notes. Through these efforts, our sponsors understand that traditional metrics and media impressions are just the gateway for more treasured final results: creating relationships and provoking brand loyalty.

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