Storytelling in Branding and Marketing Builds Fan Experience in the Sports Industry

April 4, 2023
Patrick Rishe

What’s new for 2023 in the world of branding and marketing in the sports industry? Personalization and fan engagement are two focus areas in branding and marketing in the sports industry. Brands understand the power of mobile content to make connections and build stories with fans throughout a sporting event, from non-match to game-day engagement, and throughout a club or athlete’s season.

And if a fan can’t be in person for their chosen sport, live streaming creates more opportunities to enjoy the event and develop experiences for sports enthusiasts. And these technologies provide new opportunities for the sports marketer.

Patrick Rishe, the host of Suite Talk: The Business Behind Sports, checked in with two people focused on the latest in branding and marketing for the sports industry. Kurt Jansen, Senior Director of Strategy at GMR Marketing, and Tim Rebich, Partner at VPCo., dished out all the latest insights and trends in sports branding and marketing today.

Whatever the latest sports trend or marketing technology, everything starts with an excellent foundational strategy. Rebich said his company works with brands to tighten and elevate the fan connection and find unique ways to bring that brand to life. “And when we’re working with a property, we’re working to help them tell the story of the property, and how to introduce and bring in a brand to be part of that experience for their fans, for that team, for that experience they’re trying to build.”

Rishe, Jansen, and Rebich discuss more on branding and marketing…

● How storytelling plays a critical role in bolstering fan experiences

● The strategy for building a brand from scratch

● Storytelling vs. story making in sports marketing and branding

“When you go and experience something via either a brand or something aside from that, we always say, it’s not our story to tell,” Jansen said. “So, when you build an experience, that experience is created in a way to invoke emotion that creates connection, that creates these memories. That memory may differ based on something that resonates with you than it does with someone else. We like to say that it is not our place or our right to tell that story for the consumer; it is our job to make those stories to allow them to be created by the individual.”

About Kurt

Kurt Jansen is a hybrid leader who can sit comfortably in both the design and operational worlds. Jansen collaborates with teams to better understand real-life settings’ environmental and operational realities and figure out how to best accommodate (or sometimes push against) design and operational constraints. Jansen holds a BBA in marketing from Lubar College of Business.

About Tim

Tim Rebich is an experienced designer and art director with more than fifteen years in branding and marketing. He holds a BFA in graphic design from the University of North\ Carolina at Charlotte.

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