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Six sports marketing trends you can't ignore in 2021

Fungai Alexander Mapondera
1 min read

How can rights holders and brands play to win as the world transitions through the COVID-19 pandemic? What trends are transforming the sports marketing industry? Which ones to pay closer attention to?

Faced with an unpredictable future and an increasingly fragmented landscape, one thing is certain: rights holders and brands cannot afford to stand still. In this white paper, Infront explores how rights holders and brands can harness the opportunities created by the six most influential sports marketing trends in 2021.

Evolve to win - Sports marketing trends 2021 white paper

1. Embracing complexity: Navigating a changing media distribution landscape

The pandemic has fuelled new viewing habits. From streaming and direct-to-consumer to traditional broadcast, rights holders and brands can now tailor and target packages to their own needs and the evolving preferences of fans.

2. Entertain me: Meeting demand for content formats beyond live

With live sport disrupted, rights holders, athletes and brands filled the gap with non-live content. The appetite for diverse content will remain beyond the pandemic, presenting opportunities for revenue generation, analytics and fan engagement.

3. Performance and flexible partnerships: The implications for sports sponsorship activation

Sponsorship budgets are under pressure, with a compelling business case for investment more important than ever. Brands are seeking flexible, omnichannel, performance-driven and targeted partnerships that offer more than just visibility.

4. Tech boom: Harnessing the growing sports tech market

Sports tech is the engine behind many of the trends reshaping the industry. From athlete performance to content creation, this ecosystem of new ideas offers possibilities for rights holders and brands to create real competitive advantage.

5. Keeping fit: Intensifying fitness mega trends

Social restrictions have hit the fitness industry hard. However, innovations such as virtual participation events combined with greater demand for outdoor experiences and healthy lifestyles suggest that this segment will soar as restrictions ease.

6. A new essential ingredient: The evolution and growth of esports

With viewing figures breaking records and mainstream broadcasters and sponsors showing greater interest, rights holders and brands cannot afford to ignore the irresistible rise of esports. It provides a myriad of opportunities and the question is not if to get involved, but when and how.