The Kevin Costner classic movie “Field of Dreams” promised, “if you build it, he will come.” While it worked out for Costner and his baseball field in the corn fields in Iowa, the same isn’t always true for youth sports programs.
If you create a youth sports club, there is no guarantee you will attract players, supporters or sponsors. Instead, you have to rely on marketing your youth sports club to get the word out.
Need help? Try some of these tips for marketing your youth sports club below.
Tip #1: Know what you’re marketing.
FRPA.org recommends that before you start marketing your team, you have to know what you are selling. Identify what makes your club unique. What sets your club apart from the other teams? What is the league’s mission? How does your pricing compare to other clubs? What facilities do you use and how do they compare to others? Answering these questions will help you determine what to focus on when marketing your team.
Tip #2: Cross-promote between other leagues in the area.
Momsteam.com recommends joining forces with other sports leagues in the area. For example, promote the baseball team during football or hockey season to attract players. You can also work with fellow coaches to organize cross-sport training and conditioning camps to get familiar with players in other sports and make them aware of your squad. This is also an opportunity to show athletes and their parents how playing multiple sports can help increase overall skills and athleticism.
Tip #3: Offer flexible registration and payment options.
The easier you make it for kids to join your team the more participants you will get. Offering multiple ways for parents to register their child for the team will give them more time and flexibility to complete the process. Offering online registration allows them to fill out the information at their convenience – and from home – and offering a long sign-up timeline or multiple dates will give them more options to fit the task into their schedules. Also, offering various payment options can help attract more athletes. Sports are expensive, so giving parents the option of payment plans can help increase participation. Make sure all registration and payment options are clearly stated on all marketing materials. If parents don’t know about the flexibility, then they can’t take advantage of it.
What makes your youth sports organization unique? Know what you are good at to differentiate yourself from the competition and market your club. #Marketing #YouthSports #SportsTech – Click to Tweet!
Tip #4: Invest in advertising.
While some kids and parents will seek out information about local teams, others might need the information to be brought to them. Because of this, it’s worth investing in various forms of advertising. Digital marketing is the most modern initiative. This can be done via ads on websites and social media platforms. Even posting social media posts on platforms without buying an ad space can be effective. Email campaigns to previous players or players who play other sports in the community is also a good method to attract participants. While digital marketing is proven to work, so are more traditional marketing methods. Taking out ads in community publications and church and school bulletins will reach a large audience in the area. Posting flyers at schools, community centers and grocery stores can also gain attention for your club. Even club apparel can help increase awareness for your team. Kids love t-shirts and hats. While giving players items to wear is a perk for players, it’s also advertising for the club. With the team name on the apparel, everyone who sees the child wearing the shirt or hat will see who he or she plays for. Don’t overlook great team or club sponsors as well – they can not only help support you financially, but also get the word out about your club.
Tip #5: Be present in the community.
Your targeted audience is parents and youth athletes in the community, so it’s important to make your local area aware of the team. Consider participating in parades, carnivals, fairs and other local events to increase your club’s awareness in the area. Increasing awareness about your club will likely both have immediate and long-term benefits for years to come.
Tip #6: Create a website and social media accounts.
When people are looking for clubs in the area to join their first stop is likely an online search engine or social media platform. To appear in searches, make sure your club has a website that has recent and relevant content. You should also set up accounts on relevant social media platforms to have a presence on Facebook or Twitter if athletes and their parents are searching there. A website and social media account are also good ways to convey more information about the team, its mission, and what kind of team culture the club has. Click here for more social media tips.
Tip #7: Create a portfolio.
Putting together information and fact sheets on your club can help give the team a professional look when presenting the info to potential sponsors or participants. It is also an easy way to house basic information about the team.