The sponsoring platform Sponsoo has analyzed over 1.000 sponsoring applications of athletes who have been looking for a sponsor for over 5 months now whithout seeing any results. A lot of the applications contained related mistakes that lowered the chances for a succesful deal significantly. Sponsoo presents the three most common mistakes and includes some tips for improvement.

Mistake 1: None or uncertain definition of the service in return

Occaisonally, athletes mix up the terms sponsoring and donations. However, both terms have to be differentiated quite strictly.

  • A donation is characterized by the fact that a company transfers money to the athlete without getting any service in return for that. The athlete only issues a donation-receipt.
  • While a company who is sponsoring an athlete is expecting advertising services from them. Those services should equal the amount of money transferred. In this case, the athlete can not issue a donation-receipt. One can face harsh penalties from the national finance authority.

Based on those observations, it is almost mandatory that the sponsoring-file contains concrete offers (i.e presence on the jersey, on the advertising boards around the stadium, on the website of the athlete or his vehicle). That way, the potential sponsor knows exactly what to expect for his investment. Beyond that, media-numbers are a must! Every sponsor wants to know how many Facebook-fans, Instagram- or Twitter-Follower and guests in attendance can be reached through an engagment.

Mistake 2: Pricing is too high

The price-tag of a sponsorship is often measured by the following three factors:

  • athletic success (does the team play in the first division or some miscellaneous regional league?)
  • media-range (does the stadium sell out or does the team play in front of empty seats?)
  • appeal to the target-group (golf reaches a well-funded target-group, speedminton reaches a young target-group)

Younger clubs and teams often do not know how much money they can demand. In principle, a combination of expensive, thus “bigger” sponsoring-packages and cheap, thus “smaller” sponsorship-packages sells the best.

An example:

  • Premium – Sponsor (duration: one season)
    • advertising-boards and
    • shirt-sponsoring and
    • advertisement in the club-magazine and
    • advertisement on the website
    • total: 3.000 Euro
  • “normal” Sponsoring (duration: one season)
    • shirt-sponsoring (shoulder and chest, 11 players)
    • total: 950 Euro

Mistake 3: Wrong target-group

“The more the merrier”? This motto does not apply in the context of adressing potential sponsors. One should look up all the available information about products and target-group of all the interesting companies before actually contacting them.

A professional golf player should not contact a manufacturer of energy-drinks, but rather a manufacturer for exclusive men’s fashion. As a skateboarder however, one has better chances to land a deal with a cool street wear brand, than with a swiss watch company.

To anybody who wants to improve their chances on a successful sponsorship beyond our tips, should visit our website With Sponsoo, athletes can advertise their sponsorship-application and get more companies to engange with them – very fast and easy.