Partnership Reports

Music Artists & Influencers Amplify Reach with Sports Jersey Sponsorship

May 9, 2024

Superstar artists and influencers are increasingly embracing jersey patch sponsorships—an intriguing trend that transcends traditional marketing tactics by offering direct, high-profile exposure to a wide array of passionate pro sports fan bases. 

Case in point: FC Barcelona's partnership with Spotify, which launched in 2022 and has since seen artists like Drake, The Rolling Stones, and Rosalia emblazoned on the club’s jerseys. Most recently, the team announced a collaboration with Karol G, Spotify’s most-streamed female Latin music artist globally for four years running—debuting a special matchday shirt featuring the artist’s signature barbed wire heart logo in the women’s team’s faceoff against Villarreal Femenino on April 13th, and again in the men’s April 21st showdown with El Clásico. Fans can also purchase the limited-edition shirt at FC Barcelona’s online store, with just 1899 available—a nod to the team’s founding year. 

FC Barcelona's most engaging post—commemorating International Music Day on Instagram last November, and featuring a star-studded lineup of the artists with jersey partnerships—garnered a stunning 2.7M in total interactions, underscoring the collaborations’ resounding success. 

FC Barcelona Instagram Post

Similarly, Premier League team, Ipswich Town—promoted last week to the top-tier league following a 22-year absence—has proudly displayed Ed Sheeran's name on their front jersey patch since 2021, underscoring the lifelong connection between the artist and his local club, which he grew up rooting for. The sponsorship’s inaugural season saw the team sell the most home jerseys in 15 years, while a shirt collaboration last season featuring designs from Sheeran’s “Equals” album became the fastest-selling jersey in the club’s history. He was in frequent contact with the team in the run-up to the May 4th victory over Huddersfield that clinched Ipswich’s promotion, and video-called into the celebrations after the historic win. The record-setting artist has already spoken publicly of the tremendous positive impact of the promotion—which will undoubtedly multiply team revenue exponentially—on the town of Ipswich. Beyond the primary jersey patch asset, Sheeran’s sponsorship includes rotating billboards across the club’s Portman Road pitch, and his album logos’ appearance on pre- and post-match team press conference banners.

Meanwhile, American sports and comedy YouTube sensation, Dude Perfect, became Burnley FC’s junior & academy official shirt partner in July 2023—three months after the team’s return to the top flight after a one-year break. The deal reflects the partners’ shared goal to grow both their fan bases and their bottom lines: Dude Perfect’s prime audience, the 5-to-16-year-old demographic, is just starting to embrace the Premier League in the US—and efforts to grow Burnley’s relatively low profile in the league will no doubt boost the value of Dude Perfect’s investment. 

Speaking of YouTube giants, MrBeast (real name: Jimmy Donaldson)—who boasts the largest following of any individual on YouTube, at more than 250M—inked a groundbreaking deal with the Charlotte Hornets last October, making his Feastables snack brand the team’s official jersey patch partner. The sponsorship marked the first-ever link-up between a social media influencer and an NBA team—and will almost certainly not be the last. Watch this space for more blockbuster collaborations between content creators and pro sports franchises. 

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