3 Strategies to Score a Touchdown with Your Sports Marketing Strategy

09.24.2015 Cox Media

Where does your business rank? 

There’s nothing quite like the start of football season to bring home-town fans and rivals from all over cheering their teams on. And you can bet that any fans that couldn’t make it to the game will definitely be tuning in with nachos and hot wings nearby.

With all of the excitement generated during the season, your audience will be pumped up and anxiously watching as their teams fight to make it to the championship. How exactly do you identify who your audience is, what they’ll be watching and at what time? Furthermore, what type of content will appeal to them? It’s time to get in the game and secure a win for your business with these three tips!

1. Pay attention to audience diversity

In order to win with your marketing strategy, you must know your audience. Market segmentation is one way to do this by looking at subsections of consumers and implementing specific strategies to target those groups. What do you know about your audience? For starters, you know they probably either like sports, or are tuning in with a friend or family member that does! Here are some other factors to consider:

  • Is your audience made up of mostly men, women, or mixture of both? 
  • Does your audience include children and families? 
  • What’s the age range of your audience on a given day or time? 

Take that information a step further by exploring the psychographics of your audience. Using psychographics helps advertisers narrow in to what really drives consumer’s purchasing decisions by looking at their values and interests, among other factors. By identifying the behaviors of the audiences watching sports programming for specific events and times, you’ll complete the perfect play to specialize your ad content to segmented groups. 


2. Target time slots with high audience engagement

Now that you’ve identified the “who,” you need to discover the “when” by researching the key times to display your ad content. For example, if you’re advertising a new line-up of sedans and family cars, you may not want your ads running during an early afternoon mid-week baseball game. Instead, you should pick a time where families will likely being watching the game together- perhaps on weekends or during the evenings.

Taking it a step further, why not creatively design your content to speak directly to the audience you’re targeting? Maybe your new vehicle makes it easier to carry the kids’ sporting equipment, or perhaps you have added an extra row to accommodate more passengers- guess who’s in charge of the team carpool now?! This is a key component to ensure your advertising is targeting the right audience at the right time. A household of loyal football fans or a group of friends tracking their fantasy football will likely be in front of a television on a Sunday afternoon. You’ll catch a large percentage of your sports fans during the game’s live broadcast, but remember that a lot fans will stick around for the post game wrap-ups, and some fans keep their televisions tuned into to ESPN and other sports networks around the clock!


3. Take advantage of the link between major sporting events and social media to reach audiences on multiple platforms.

Social media is strongly embedded in our lives and consumes a large portion, if not the majority, of the time we spend on the internet. While sports fans are tuned into television, they’re also checking their social media for updates and commentary. Didn’t catch the instant replay of the game-changing drive? Don’t worry- it will be on Instagram or Twitter almost instantly. Social media provides a constant flow of communication and information, which is why it’s often the first pit stop audiences use to get in the know. If you’re knee deep in work and can’t catch the game live, you can certainly bet your twitter feed will have the most up to date commentary on the who, what, and when from the game.

With so many people turning to social media for sports-related content, it makes sense to hop on the bandwagon and cast a wider net to capture an audience you might have otherwise overlooked. When opting for this strategy, remember that in order for it be fully effective, it must still focus on targeted consumer segments and fulfill a need or concern of that segment.


For more information on sports marketing strategies, see the Sports Marketing E-Book or our interactive Sports Marketing Coach.


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