From jobs in sports marketing to public relations and corporate sponsorships, jobs in sports don’t just end with the team.
Instead, sports marketing is a narrower focus under the general category of marketing, which concentrates on the promotion of sporting events and organizations along with the promotion of products, goods, and services through the actual sporting event or team.
The object being promoted can be a physical product or even just a brand name. Regardless of what is being promoted, the essential goal of any sports marketer is to sell, sell, and sell some more.
Types Of Jobs In Sports Marketing
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Sport marketing is divided into three sectors, with the first being about sports in general (examples: NFL, MLS, Olympics). When sports marketers are promoting sports, the strategy behind such practices is usually referred to as simply, the marketing of sports.
Secondly, sporting events, teams, and professional athletes can be utilized to promote various products within the industry, which is generally called marketing through sports.
Finally, the third type of sports marketing promotion is to increase public participation, which is commonly deemed grassroots sports marketing.
Jobs in sports marketing can follow any number of different paths. However, the one common thread among most of these positions is that they involve creative, fast-paced and deadline-oriented work. Organizations and businesses that employ sports marketers include the following:
- Corporate sponsors
- Sports facilities
- Media outlets
- Sporting goods retailers
- Marketing and public relations agencies
- Sports equipment manufacturers
- College and universities
- Leagues, teams, and sports associations
How To Get Jobs In Sports Marketing
Jobs in sports marketing — like any job in the sports industry — are super competitive. Sometimes, it’s having a personal contact that gets your foot in the door while other times, completing an internship or two in sports marketing can certainly separate you from the competition.
But that alone isn’t a guarantee to obtaining those dream jobs in sports marketing. It’s attending sports networking conferences, like Sports Marketing 360, and engaging with industry professionals in order to promote your brand. It’s utilizing social media (Twitter/LinkedIn) to increase your sports marketing knowledge about arena operations, corporate sponsorships, sporting goods, and other similar sports areas.
As Chris McKinney, CEO of SPORTS LAUNCH, has advised young college students and professionals looking to advance their sports careers, first figure out who the decision-makers are in the sports marketing world. Connect with them, leverage your strengths, and offer them something for free. Then, be ready to hustle your butt off. With a little luck, you might be on your way to a career in sports marketing.
Deanna Barnes, Email Marketing Coordinator at ESPN
Comments on…helpful tips to land those dream jobs in sports marketing.
“You can’t just stop at the internet. You have got to go a bit deeper. Starting with the Internet, look for different sports organizations such as the National Sports Marketing Association. See what companies they work with and go directly to them. LinkedIn is great. It is professional, not social. I have made a lot of contacts there and they do post jobs as well. Also, like I said, the sports departments at your college or university are great resources because they have connections. It is who you know and you have to be competitive.”
Comments on…with jobs in sports marketing being so competitive, how to wedge your foot in the door.
“My first sports internship was with the Cincinnati Reds in the marketing department. What you will find is that they may pay you only peanuts, however, the experience is invaluable. So, I would say to look for the opportunities, not just the pay check. From there you can take what you learned and use them inside or outside the sports industry but it is key to get those internships.”
Darren Rovell, Sports Business Reporter at ESPN
While the interview below between Lewis Howes (CEO of Sports Networker & Sports Executives Association) and Darren Rovell (ESPN’s Sports Business Reporter) isn’t sports-marketing specific, the pieces of information learned in this short 3-minute clip are invaluable.
As a result, they can be can be applied across the whole sports-industry spectrum. Implement these few take home points into your job/intern searching regiment.
- Understand how competitive the sports industry is and never forget that as you progress through your career. Then, behave with that passion to obtain your dream job.
- Give something away for free.
- It’s not who you know, it’s how good you are.
- When contacting potential employers, send everything in a box; it’s not only what you did but how you presented it that matters.
College Programs That Will Help You Land Jobs In Sports Marketing
There are countless undergraduate and graduate college programs in the country that focus on marketing. But how many narrow their focus to sports marketing? Which ones are the most respectable among sports industry professionals and will give you a leg up on the competition in that all-in-important first job interview? Look no further than the University of Oregon. We highlight the Ducks below and the headway their making in educating young professionals who are passionate about jobs in sports marketing.
University Of Oregon — Warsaw Sports Marketing Center
Based in Eugene, Ore., the University’s Warsaw Sports Marketing Center was the nation’s first sports business program housed at a college of business, and more specifically, the Lundquist College of Business. Warsaw is world renown as an educational think tank for those passionate about concentrating in sports marketing.
The Sports Marketing Center is recognized by ESPN, Sports Illustrated, and Sports Business Journal, as one of the leading institutions in educating tomorrow’s leaders in sports business.
Testimonials From Oregon MBA Students About Warsaw Center
Of course, Warsaw is not the only college program where you can get a degree that will help you get jobs in sports marketing. However, they are the only one that offers a complete undergraduate major in sports marketing. Here are a few others that have a focus on sports marketing.
Indiana University — Department Of Kinesiology
The Department of Kinesiology Sport Marketing & Management Program strives to continue its tradition of excellence in the creation and dissemination of knowledge, technical skills, and conceptual understanding of contemporary sport marketing / management to students, colleagues, professionals in the sport business industry, and to the field of sport management through demonstrated excellence in teaching, research, and service.
The philosophy of the Sport Marketing and Management Program is based on a theoretical foundation in course work with a practical application to prepare graduates for success in the field of commercial sports.
The curriculum includes classes from a variety of disciplines and an internship program designed to give the student hands-on experience in the field. Indiana provides not only an undergraduate program but also a doctoral program for those students interested in sports marketing and management.
Duquesne University — A.J. Palumbo School of Business Administration
Sports Marketing is the business side of sports. It encompasses planning, implementing and controlling marketing activities as they relate to athletic teams, venues and related products and services. It also includes the marketing of non-athletic products through an association with sports. Sports marketing has a role in a range of industries including sporting good manufacturers, sporting goods retailers, tourism, broadcast media and even facility construction, so sports marketing professionals need a healthy understanding and appreciation of both athletics and business.
The A.J. Palumbo School of Business Administration prepares students to analyze and address today’s sporting trends and implement successful business practices in response to those findings. The major provides a working understanding of the role of marketing in sports and sports-related organizations and helps students develop skills in applying fundamental marketing concepts. They are introduced to strategic marketing concepts, value-added marketing and promotional strategies while developing strong communication and analytical skills, which will enhance employment opportunities.
How To Find Jobs In Sports Marketing
Are you ready to find and land your dream job in sports marketing? Check out the job postings on Work in Sports for a detailed breakdown of jobs based on type and region.
Did you know that there were so many types of jobs in sports marketing to choose from? Let us know what your dream job in sports would be. Leave a comment for us below or tweet us your thoughts at @sportsnetworker.
Jobs In Sports Marketing References
- http://www.jobsinsports.com/blog/post.cfm/insights-from-an-espn-employee – quotes