KORE Releases State of the Industry Report

Financial, Food & Beverage, and Technology Sectors Top Sponsorship Spend

Nike, Adidas, and Emirates Top Brands for Social Media Sponsorship Value, Cristiano Ronaldo and Eileen Gu Lead Athletes Social Media Value

NEW YORK, April 18, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — KORE has released its 2022/23 State of the Industry Report, featuring an annual review of sports marketing, sponsorship, and social media trends. In 2022, sports-related sponsorship spending increased +12% for the year. However, overall sponsorship deals were down slightly, as brands became more selective about who they choose to work with and spent more time quantifying the impact of those sponsorships.

In 2022, social media sponsorships saw overall engagement increase, with more effort on quality posts focused on subject matter and type driving engagement, while focusing less on overall quantity of posts. Branded social media posts and views were up for brands year-over-year, demonstrating the importance of understanding what content drives successful partnerships.

“The work we do with hundreds of rights holders and brands across the globe allows us to surface really valuable insights throughout the industry, that impacts the market and helps give our clients a competitive edge,” said KORE CEO Jason Fletcher. “Where it really gets exciting is when we see how our clients begin to innovate with this type of intelligence.”

Looking at the global state of sponsorship spend, KORE determined that the average annual deal size in 2022 was $326k versus $273k in 2019 (+23%) and $317k in 2021 (+12%). The average deal length increased to 3.3 years, indicating that brands and rights holders have shifted focus to more long-term objective setting and planning. 

The big five North American leagues experienced similar trends in terms of increased sponsorship income through fewer deals. According to KORE data, spending is up +6%, while deals are down -4% year-over-year. Compared to 2019, spending is up +14% despite the number of deals being down by -5%.

KORE’s State of the Industry Report also tracked the top sponsorship categories, which sectors were spending more and less over the last year, as well as sponsorship asset trends and more. In 2022, the Financial sector led sponsorship spending for the fourth consecutive year. The other top sectors include Food & Beverage, Communications & Media, Retail, and Technology.

Social media drives significant exposure and value for brands, creating more than $12B in total adjusted ad value (AAV) across social platforms. In 2022, KORE tracked an -8% dip in brand value from 2021 and fewer partnership deals created, but a +39% increase over pre-pandemic levels in 2019. 

Branded posts, engagement, and views were all up for brands year-over-year and versus 2019, which demonstrates understanding what types of content such as video, images, text mentions, hashtags, keywords, and various topic analysis are key insights for successful partnerships.

Among all sports, global football had 54% of all social media followers, 53% of social engagement, and 42% of social brand value. 

Instagram videos were the most engaging form of content in 2022, rising above the other platforms including TikTok, YouTube, Instagram (IG), Facebook, and Twitter. Instagram continued to be the most engaging platform for four years straight.

The brands that benefitted most from partnerships in social media in 2022 included Nike, Adidas, Emirates, Puma, and Red Bull. The report also named the top 30 best promoted brands as well as top male and female athletes on social media. On the male side, global football stars Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, and Neymar da Silva lead the list, while skier Eileen Gu, global footballer Alisha Lehmann, and tennis great Serena Williams top the women’s list.

KORE’s data footprint is the largest in the industry. The company’s sponsorship management data perspective covers more than 70% of major North American sport and entertainment properties and globally more than $52 billion in sponsorship spend. KORE actively tracks more than 500,000 entities across sport and entertainment on social media platforms, as well as more than 32-billion fan connections.

The complete KORE 2022 State of the Industry Report is available here.

KORE, now including Hookit, is the only single-source solution to offer a full suite of management, measurement, and optimization solutions for buyers and sellers of sponsorship, marketers, and organizations looking to better engage with their audiences. 

Annually, KORE releases several sport-, league-, and team-specific Intel reports, case studies, and white papers. KORE’s next comprehensive report will be released at the end of the year, focused on brands, teams, leagues and athletes on the rise. Shorter industry sector reports will be released throughout 2023.


KORE is the global leader in engagement marketing solutions. More than 900 brands, venues, and sports organizations trust KORE’s tools and platform as a source of truth to manage assets and measure partnership impact, with real-time insights, across all channels.

Through Sponsorship Management and Evaluation, Ticketing and Fan Engagement, and Data Management and Analytics, KORE’s two-sided network unites corporate sponsors, sponsorship properties, and their fans with solutions that help enhance the fan experience, drive smarter decisions, and enable marketing and operations teams to spend time where it matters. Learn more at KORESoftware.com or follow us LinkedIn or Twitter.

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