For any brand, a good sports-related partnership must clearly support business goals and objectives and, of course, grow the bottom line. But to ensure long-term success and drive enduring value and loyalty, business partnerships should share a higher purpose, and deftly communicate that purpose, to create connections and ultimately, mean something to people. Sports fans, like most consumers — particularly younger consumers — are consciously choosing brands that support their needs, values and beliefs. Brands need to meet those rising expectations and create partnerships, campaigns and communication strategies that demonstrate they share common ideals and principles. As the rules of sports marketing evolve, with fans expecting — and receiving — more engagement and access to their favorite teams and athletes than ever before, teams and leagues have made looking for new ways to engage with and please their fans a priority. In addition to creating loyalty, selling tickets and merchandise and cultivating new streams of revenue, sports properties must respond to their fans’ desire to “participate,” and would most likely welcome with open arms a passionate, proactive corporate partner with fresh ideas.The business impact can be significant. Recent studies have demonstrated that purpose-driven marketing strategies can have a profound impact on business results. Harvard Business Review research showed that companies that aspire to more than just short-term gains and the pursuit of profit have a clear advantage over their competition. According to the Harvard Business Review’s 2015 “The Business Case for Purpose” report, purpose-driven companies make more money, have more engaged employees and more loyal customers, and are even better at innovation and transformational change. View the full article here.