ANALYSIS OF SPORT SPONSORSHIP AND EVENTS
Analysis of Sport Sponsorship and Events
In this world driven by globalisation, there are various ways through which people can release their stress originating from over-burdened personal and professional endeavours. One of such ways concerns sport that is included in the entertainment industry. This is because though majority of people no longer indulge in sports due to their bust schedules and work load. Therefore, sport business and events have emerged as an entertainment to these as something to talk and gossip about.
Apart from this, as much of the audience attention is given to sports organisation, teams, players and events, businesses have identified and exploit opportunities to sell or commercialise their products and services. To protect their identity and individuality, businesses (sponsors) enter into various contractual agreements with the sport organisation. In light of this, the research makes an important discussion about copyrights and trademarks as well as important features of contract and agreements in sport business. Different features of each topic is covered accompanied the assessment as to why these dynamics are employed in sport business and events.
The Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) are those precious assets that are employed as one of the important marketing tools in sport event sponsorship because symbols, colours, logos, artwork and production technology hold a commercial value and, therefore, must be protected. In commercial law, Intellectual property of both the sports organisation and sponsor business is protected by designing and implementation of different registrations methods. These numerous arrangements to secure Intellectual Property (from ambush marketing, deception and confusions etc) include Copyrights, Service mark (Trademark) and Patents. These registered arrangements are also discussed in detail, in later sections, except from Patents.
In sport event sponsorship, Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) contain different important features that are explained in this section. The first of these is Patents that involves protection of the technology employed in production or making of a certain product or service. The second main feature of Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) is Design for protecting the look of the tangible product, if any. The third important feature is Trademarks for differentiating or distinguishing the product from those of competitors. This is the most important aspect or characteristic of Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) since it aims at the individuality and market reputation of the product as well as its manufacturing organisation. The fourth, and last, feature of Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) is the protection of audiovisual s and artworks used to publicise the product or service through Copyrights.
The Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) are practically used in sport event sponsorship due to benefits provided by each component or feature. As far as Patents are concerned, they encourage sponsors to pursue technological advancement further to produce quality products, just like sports equipment. Trademarks and Designs help sponsors to differentiate their offerings from competitors. Copyrights protect the brand image in face of the ambush marketing .
The Main Features and Assess the Practical Use of Trademark in Sport Event Sponsorship
Generally, a trademark represents a symbol, sign or expression to differentiate products and services of a sponsor from those of its competitors (non-sponsored businesses or organisations) to prevent ambush marketing. A trademark prominently highlights a hologram, smell, sound, shape, colour and words to promote sales as well as loyalty to sponsor’s products among the youth. The most prominent feature of trademark in sport events is that it must provide a uniqueness or distinctiveness to the products as well as services of the sponsor. This is all about differentiation of products and services of one sponsor from the other competitors for avoiding false or ambush marketing. Another feature of trademarks in sport events is the registration of unique characteristics of sponsors’ offerings for protection of rights and ownership.
The third important feature of Trademarks in sport event sponsorship encourages the consistency in quality of products and services on part of the sponsor. A consumer has bought sponsor’s goods and services as it is perceived to be of high quality. Therefore, the producer (sponsor) must maintain the fourth feature of Trademark concerning such quality and corporate reputation as well as keep improving it in the meantime. The fifth feature of Trademarks concerns the differentiation of sponsors’ products and services as well as their protection from competitive ambushes. As the sponsor has invested lots of time and huge financial resources in the event to trademark and sell products/services, it is the duty of public authorities to sue anyone who tries to copy the product and deceive consumers .
In sport events, the display or use of trademark helps businesses to increase sales generation of their products/services by appealing openly to emotions and aspirations of sports fans that fall for specific sport club, organisation, player, team or an event. In sports events, trademarks are practically used by sponsors to increase their connectivity and associations with a particular sport organisation, player or team. To have their organisation and offerings associated with any team or sport organisation, business rivals may use trademarks without permission from the management of sport entity.
The Main Features and Assess the Practical Use of a Contract
Contracts in sport business are completely different from those in our personal lives. For a sport contract to be legally binding and enforceable, it must contain six different elements. They must be express contracts evidenced by words, written or spoken, in form of professional agreements. The first feature of sport contract is that there should an agreement as well as offer and acceptance after all the concerned parties reach consensus. The second element is that all parties to a sport contract must be competent, having legal capacity. The third important feature or element of contract in sport business concerns the genuine nature of acceptance of an offer and consensus. There should be no deception, mistake, duress or none of the parties should accept an offer under pressure. The fourth feature in sport contract is that all demands and compensation must be backed by lawful (legal) objectives and considerations/price in return.
In sport business, contracts are signed as a check and balance to ensure competition is scheduled properly, times and dates correspond as well as other imperative requirements are complied with. None of the parties could back out from athletic contests when the contract in sport business is legally binding. Contracts are practically used in sport events and businesses to handle any sort of disputes and conflicts.
The Main Features of a Sport Sponsorship Agreement
Objectivity and Formulation of Goals
The first element or feature of sponsorship agreement in sports business concerns the formulation of agreement goals and objectives. Both the parties to sponsorship agreement should clearly define what they wish to accomplish through such an act in sports events as well as the manner in which such goals and objectives would be accomplished. By doing so, both the sponsor and sport organisation agree to present as well as understand each other’s business values and beliefs.
Discussion on Individuality of the Sports Entity
The second feature of sponsorship agreement in sports business concerns the uniqueness or individuality of the sports entity. Here, detailed information of the sports organisation needs to be highlighted followed by a comprehensive description about the aspect supposed to be sponsored (such as sportswear, drinks, eatables and media coverage etc). Not only this, the sponsorship agreement must also determine norms in specific industry of the sports organisation .
Here, it is imperative that none of these aspects should be assumed to be generalised and understood by all parties. Each and every detail about the industry, sports organisation as well as sponsorship aspects must be clearly defined as the second important feature. This is because the goal to educate all parties wanting to sponsor the sports event. Industry norms about sponsorship agreement should be discussed and included so as to keep the sponsor aware of duplicate agreements entered by their rivals with other sport organisations. This is done to protect both the sport organisation and sponsor from “Ambush Marketing” during the event.
Protection of Corporate Reputation as well as Rights of the Sports Entity and the Potential Sponsor
This is the third important feature of sport sponsorship agreement in which parties should respect each other’s business values, market reputation and rights to ownership for avoiding any potential litigation in future. Sports sponsorship agreements should never be overlooked and considered as mere templates of a specific business contract. It clauses must be carefully drafted and properly worded. The terms of contractual agreement between the sport entity and sponsor must match to arrive at consensus through negotiations.
Apart from the above mentioned elements, the sponsorship agreement in sport business should also highlight specific rights of each party, licensing of intellectual property, measures to discourage ambush marketing practices as well as restrictions on both the sport organisation and potential sponsors .
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