June 30, 2023

How to use a major sporting event to grow and engage your audience

A Guide to Creating a Comprehensive campaign plan


In the world of sports business, major sporting events hold immense potential for brands to gain visibility, engage with their target audience, and grow a new one. These events bring together passionate fans, industry professionals, and potential clients, making them ideal platforms to achieve your goals. In this article, we will explore how sports businesses can harness the power of major sporting events. Whether you're a publisher, broadcaster, brand or a marketeer, this guide will equip you with an event plan that will set you apart from the competition.

Identify the Right Sporting Event

To begin your event marketing journey, identify major sporting events that align with your brand and target audience. Consider major events such as the Super Bowl, World Cups, Olympics, or Grand Slam tennis tournaments. But, don't forget about the power of annual  events either. The Melbourne Cup, State of Origin and finals series offer the opportunity to engage and grow your community.

These events boast global viewership and offer opportunities to reach a diverse audience. Evaluate factors such as event scale, relevance to your industry, and geographic location to ensure the event resonates with your brand message.

Set Clear Objectives

Before diving into event planning, establish clear objectives for your brand. Are you aiming to increase brand awareness, capture zero and first party data, create new commercial assets or engage with your audience? Clearly defining your goals will guide your event marketing strategy and help measure success. Align your objectives with key performance indicators (KPIs) to track the impact of your efforts effectively.

Craft an Engaging Event Experience

To make a lasting impression, it's essential to create an engaging event experience that resonates with your target audience. Consider the following strategies:

  1. Sponsorship Opportunities: Explore sponsorship opportunities within the event to enhance your brand's visibility. This could involve logo placements, branded merchandise, or even naming rights for specific sections or activities.
  2. Experiential Marketing: Design interactive experiences that allow attendees to engage with your brand. Incorporate branded activations, photo booths, games, or AI driven technology to leave a lasting impression.
  3. Influencer Collaborations: Partner with influential individuals or athletes who can endorse your brand during the event. Their association will increase brand credibility and help reach a wider audience.
  4. Content Creation: Develop captivating content centred around the event. Create blog articles, videos, and social media posts that capture the excitement and share behind-the-scenes glimpses. Encourage user-generated content by running contests or giveaways.
  5. On-site Branding: Leverage on-site branding opportunities to ensure maximum visibility. Utilise banners, signage, branded merchandise, and custom installations that align with the event's theme.

Implement a Comprehensive Event Strategy

Any event is not just the in-tournament period of time, , a well-rounded strategy will  span the full duration of a tournament which includes pre-event, during event, and post-event activities:

  1. Pre-Event Promotion: Generate buzz by leveraging social media, email marketing, and targeted advertising. Create captivating event landing pages, offer valuable incentives, and use event-specific hashtags to encourage engagement. Ideal campaigns for this stage are prediction campaigns, such as quizzes, squad or score predictors.
  2. During Event Coverage: Keep the excitement alive during the event and capitalise on the action by providing real-time updates on social media platforms. Use live streaming, behind-the-scenes content, and interactive polls to engage with your audience and foster a sense of community. Ideal campaigns for this stage are voting and polling campaigns, as well as half time trivia and quizzes.
  3. Influencer Takeovers: Collaborate with influencers or industry experts to host live takeovers on your social media channels. This will attract their followers and create engaging content that promotes your brand throughout the event. Use data-capture during these events to turn engagement into valuable marketing leads.  Drive up your campaigns engagement by incentivising. How about a Meet-and-Greet as a winning prize?
  4. Post-Event hype: After the event, continue to engage with attendees and nurture leads. Send personalised follow-up emails, share event highlights, and offer exclusive post-event promotions to maintain momentum and build long-term relationships. Ideal campaigns for this stage are voting campaigns, such as MVP and moment of the match votes.

Measure and Analyse Results

To gauge the effectiveness of your event marketing efforts, monitor and analyse relevant metrics. Track social media engagement, website traffic, lead generation and conversion rates, brand mentions, and customer feedback. This data will provide valuable insights into the success of your event marketing campaign and help you make informed decisions for future endeavours. Identify the key performance indicators (KPIs) that align with your objectives and regularly evaluate your progress against these benchmarks.


Major sporting events present unparalleled opportunities for sports businesses to showcase their brand and connect with their target audience on a global scale. By strategically planning and executing an event plan, you can leverage the excitement and energy surrounding these events to drive brand awareness, engagement, and business growth.

From selecting the right event and setting clear objectives to crafting an immersive event experience and implementing a comprehensive marketing strategy, each step plays a vital role in your success. By consistently measuring and analysing results, you can refine your approach and continuously improve your event marketing efforts.

Embrace the power of sporting events to market your brand and position yourself as a leader in the sports business industry.

Interested in running digital fan engagement campaigns and generating valuable leads? Discover how Campaignware can help you achieve your goals. With a suite of powerful tools and features, Campaignware empowers you to drive targeted marketing initiatives and optimise your campaigns for success. Request a demo today to elevate your fan engagement and take your sports marketing strategy to new heights. 

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