Marketing on the Metaverse: Sponsorship Agreements for Stadiums, Arenas and Other Venues | Pillsbury – Internet and Social Media Law Blog


Every year, professional sports franchises introduce new marketing tactics and new sponsorship models to increase their revenue streams: not to mention new equipment, new locations for logos in stadiums/arenas and jerseys, and a host of online engagement opportunities. As the concept of the Metaverse sinks deeper into the minds of fans, it’s no surprise that there has been a lot of buzz surrounding this futuristic setting. But even as professional sports franchises are announcing their own forays into metadata, organizations around the world would do well to consider how this bifurcation of the sports experience – seeing venue versus metadata in person – is creating a whole new world of marketing revenue.

Imagine your favorite sports website. Consider the tens (if not hundreds) of thousands of people exposed to sponsorship content at the stadium. Next, consider the number of physical signs and displays with promotions revolving on the site. But now, what about the metaverse? Should marketing materials be provided when sports teams integrate their sites into the metadatabase? Or could a completely different spectrum of businesses be featured in a Metaverse stage? Alternatively, if a sponsor at the “physical” stage wants to maintain the relationship on the Metaverse, should they pay more, especially given the number of additional people potentially exposed to this branding? What about regional considerations? Will an organization want flexibility (as technology allows) to create region-targeted ads?

Adding virtual counterparts to real-world locations that need not be limited to a single reflection of physical location can expand sponsorship opportunities exponentially; organizations better start building the foundations now to maximize their revenue streams later.

Who knows how far the sponsorship goes?
The key consideration is whether sports teams want the same sponsors to move from physical to metaverse. If your answer is yes, follow-up conversations with sponsors will focus on rewards – after all, sponsors shouldn’t be shown in two places for the price of one. If the answer is no, the interviews are admittedly more deceptive, as contracts come back for negotiation, an organization will need to be more careful in defining the scope of sponsorship. Note that regional considerations will also be a pricing factor (and any geolocation restrictions may affect where content is found).

No matter how intense the buzz of buzzwords or how fierce the hype is when it comes to the emerging form of the Metaverse, it’s still unknown how everything will work out. Concretely, this means that right now don’t do that time to hurry up, talk to sponsors and start writing contracts. Instead, it’s a good time to get together with the organization’s business, legal, and marketing departments and begin developing long-term sponsorship (and outsourcing) strategies. There are things to consider:

Physics and Metaverse: Is the goal to have existing sponsors sign in for the physical site and the Metaverse site? So how would an organization seek an increase in fees if the sponsor wanted their logo and brand to be displayed in both places? If the answer is no, how to approach this bifurcation with the supplier?

Review your referral agreements now: Especially if an organization is looking to recruit new sponsors to Metaverse, start requesting deals now to get an idea of ​​how existing sponsorship deals can complicate things. For example, how is sponsorship defined? Is Company X your team’s ‘Official Matchday Drinks Sponsor’ or ‘Stadium Drinks Sponsor’? In the first case, the sponsor has a stronger argument that his sponsorship is not tied to a physical location. But also look at how brand placement is defined, are there any details about the type of signage to be provided? In addition to reviewing sponsorship agreements, organizations should also review brand license agreements to understand how ads/brands/logos can be reproduced in the metadata store. Ensuring that IP protections are in place (and complying with contractual limitations) will help protect an organization (and its content) when it enters the metadata store. To remember, understanding of metaverse modifiers will evolve over time, therefore, continue to monitor the impact of laws on the operations of an organization in the metadata warehouse. For example, ad compliance requirements may change as different jurisdictions try to exert influence on the metastore.

Upcoming contracts: If there are sponsorship agreements that are in the process of being negotiated or about to be renewed and an organization is not yet ready to initiate the Metaverse conversation, consider how you can ensure that the agreement maximizes your flexibility in the future. For example, a shorter term means that an organization becomes more agile in adapting as its understanding of the metadata store improves. Clearly defining the relationship to physical location will also provide flexibility to handle the metadata store later.

With so many unknowns, it would be a daunting task for a company to try and write a Metaverse ready contract. Don’t do that. Instead, consult with lawyers familiar with contracts and technology. As the contractual nuances surrounding metadata continue to evolve, companies are encouraged to move forward in understanding the legal and financial implications for their business. In particular, organizations that take into account the future impact of existing sponsorship agreements will be in a good position to maximize their sponsorship revenue in the future. As a result, sponsors want to be protected, as do organizations and sites. Thinking about these protections now can make these exciting first steps to metadata easier.

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