Let’s talk about Sponsorships

Good morning Guys,

About two weeks ago, someone reached out to me and told me a club he was representing needed sponsorships. In his words, they are looking for alternative sources of income aside the monthly government money. Good thoughts, brilliant.

It was at this point I rolled out my questions. What is the perception of this club by the community in which the club exists? What is the culture of the club? The club administrators, what level of integrity do they represent? Then I asked him, If you had 100 million and you’re looking to invest in corporate sponsorship, will you put your money in this club?

Football is a big deal in Nigeria. The irony however is that, we have not even gotten to a half of the potential possible with our football. You could look at all the things we rejoice over and think we are some deal- truth is, we are miles away from where we should be. Football can be a multi billion Naira industry in Nigeria, if we want it to.

A few years ago, I heard my mentor ask a question. He said, why would Chivita go all the way to Manchester to go sponsor Manchester United? When there are teams here that could use such money. It was also similar with what Sterling Bank did. Corporate organizations would rather spend the money outside the country than leave it here for football sponsorships.

These organizations see that we are not serious yet. These organizations see that we are not transparent enough to impeccably state what our books are like and what they stand to gain should they come on board. These organizations know that the surrounding communities are not benefitting from the clubs.

I did ask- what if our clubs are more than just all about getting monies from the government and actually give back to the community? That is one way change people’s perception of the club. How many motherless babies has your club visited in the last 3 years? How many communal projects have been involved with in the same time? None.

What do people think of match day experience? Is the stadium safe or it’s littered with agberos on match days? Does the club listen to complaints from fans? Or is the club insensitive to safety of fans and their well-beings? What is the overall culture of this football club? Because just like you, nobody wants to be associated with a club no one likes. Nobody wants to be associated with a club that is not rightly run.

Finally in this post, I’ll like to also point out that Sponsorship sales is not something you relegate to the least person at the club. It must start from the top- everyone at the club must be involved. Imagine the club chairman of a prominent club walking into your office and asking you to come sponsor their club. It means that the sponsorship is of immense importance to the whole club and I dare say you will take the whole thing more seriously.

So you see where we are and how that these things are not rocket science. We have to clean up our house and ready ourselves to take advantage of our unique product and rightly monetize it.

That’s all for today. We will finish this talk some other time.



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