Want Your Business Name in Lights? Sponsor an Event in Your Community

Admit it: you feel a twinge whenever you drive past a stadium bearing the name of a large, well-known company on it. Whether the twinge comes from envy (“If only I had started the University of Phoenix!”) or nostalgia (“I miss Giants Stadium”)– it’s still there. If you own your own business, you can certainly appreciate the usefulness of a building being named after a business brand.

Naming Rights Boost Brand Recognition

Obviously, a company has to have a lot of capital to buy naming rights for an NFL stadium and most other major league venues. New Yorkers were already quite familiar with Citibank when Citi Field opened, and it’s safe to say Cowboys fans had heard of AT&T.

Colleges have not yet sold naming rights to their stadiums.  Take a look at the stadiums listed in this article on 2015 college football matchups. You’ll notice colleges prefer to use their stadiums to market themselves through their mascots, like Sun Devil Stadium at Arizona State University. Some may tack on the name of a winning coach to the actual field, like the Sun Devil’s Frank Kush Field.

Mid-size companies in smaller cities are often in a good place to get their names on local stadiums. Tampa’s Amalie Oil Company wasn’t a household name in the city until it purchased the naming rights for the stadium where the NFL’s Tampa Bay Lightning play. “Amalie has been flying under the radar,” Lightning owner Jeff Vinik observed to the Tampa Bay Times.

Now it’s flying a bit higher, Amalie’s footprint is growing around Tampa Bay as more independent service stations and quick-lube shops sign on to feature its products.

Look for Smaller, Local Opportunities for Naming Rights

Consider this: You just might be big enough to get naming rights for a local venue. Everyone starts small.

Amalie Oil decided to expand its footprint about 10 years before it won naming rights for the Tampa Bay Lightning’s arena. It first purchased ad space in the Tampa International Airport’s baggage claim and concourse. Then it bought the naming rights to the field where the Tampa Bay Storm Arena Football team has won five championships. Later, it sponsored NHRA driver Terry McMillan, owner of the Hoosier Thunder Motorsports team.

Closer to your home, local groups like Little League need local businesses to support them. Local businesses can get their names on team uniforms, or purchase banners to display on fences around the fields for the season. Some sponsor programs and scorecards. These won’t get you national exposure — Little League rules intend local promotion only — but your business name will be viewed week after week during the season.  And the idea here is to create top of mind awareness for your business.

What about local schools? Many of them are grateful for donations to improve playgrounds, playing fields and auditoriums. A generous check can bring a nice plaque reminding visitors that you helped restore the field where Little Johnny honed his throwing skills or Young Janie perfected her serve. Many cities also look for donations to improve public parks and provide official recognition to supporters.

Look to local events such as parades, street fairs and concerts — these often need sponsors, too. Also check out SponsorMyEvent.com, which matches potential sponsors to events.

Finally, don’t be shy about telling customers and the general public about your brand and your involvement with local philanthropy. Be sure to hire a skilled marketing/PR professional to create press releases, blogs and articles that feature your good works.



The Guinn Consultancy Group, Inc. allows and encourages guest blogs on our website to keep our clients and readers up to date with the most recent material and opportunities for them to grow and increase revenues in their businesses.  Some guest blogs may encourage and support purchases at other, unaffiliated websites.  None of the links or revenues cited in guest blogs accrue to the benefit of The Guinn Consultancy Group, Inc.  Linkage is solely for the benefit of the reader.


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