COVID-19 had a punishing effect on small businesses in the UK. It’s estimated that it cost UK SMBs £126.6 billion. For eBay, a marketplace powered by small businesses, it was critical to ‘support local’ and drive meaningful change in communities, to ensure these companies, on which eBay’s own business is centred, recovered and thrived post lockdown.
As lockdown eased, football was one of the first things to return, but COVID had badly affected grassroots clubs too – with 5,000 at risk of closure because of the pandemic.
The dual challenge for football & local businesses created an opportunity for eBay, to ‘supercharge’ the link between local businesses, local football clubs, and make an impact in communities.
Introducing, Small Businesses United. The world’s first micro-sponsorship programme allowing UK SMBs to sponsor their local football teams, all funded by eBay, and amplified via a partnership with the EFL, who’s member football clubs are pillars of their local community.
By providing local clubs and businesses a platform for exposure and amplifying via a mix of EFL rights plus localised activation, media & communications, Small Businesses United drove a substantial increase in consideration for eBay and an enormous increase in purchase intent over the course of the 2021/22 football season.