Hartwell Studio Works

The Hartwell Studio Works Sports Branding Podcast

The podcast for front office personnel who want to harness the power of sports branding to win more fans.


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Episode #7: Brand and Sponsorship with Dan Butterly


Sponsorship is a always a hot topic in the business of sports. After looking at brand and sponsorship from the sponsor's perspective in episode 5, it's now time to take a look at the subject from the property's point of view. 


Dan Butterly talks with me in this episode about the importance of the relationship between brand and sponsorship for sports properties. As the Senior Associate Commissioner of the Mountain West conference, Dan has 20 years of experience in college conference administration, including marketing, branding, and sponsorship sales. We cover a lot of ground, with some great insights as to how your property’s brand can attract and develop more successful sponsor partnerships.


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1:45 Dan's background in college athletics.

3:07 Why are sponsorships so important to the sports business?

4:42 Sponsorships are a two-way brand-building street for both sponsor and property.

5:27 How do you define a brand?

7:22 How does a collegiate conference brand have to change in order to keep pace in an environment of constant change?

9:28 What are the practical challenges of aligning brand values with a sponsor?

11:48 College sponsorships are about business needs, not just emotional sentiment.

14:09 The difference between business needs of professional vs. college sports.

17:15 What should college programs be thinking in regard to their logos and brand identity?

19:13 What are some mistakes college programs make in regards to their brand?

21:22 What can college programs do to better position their brand to attract good sponsors?

22:44 Additional thoughts on brand and sponsorship.

Total episode runtime is 00:26:36.

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John Hartwell