"Those who stop marketing to save money are like those who stop a clock to save time"      ---Henry Ford

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Wikepedia defines CAUSE MARKETING as a type of marketing involving the cooperative efforts of a "for profit" business and a non-profit organization for mutual benefit. The term is sometimes used more broadly and generally to refer to any type of marketing effort for social and other charitable causes, including in-house marketing efforts by non-profit organizations.

One exceptional example of this is the Breast Cancer Awareness efforts, that during the month of October each year, even has NFL football players wearing pink!  It has grown from a simple idea to an international campaign. 

Cause marketing differs from corporate giving (philanthropy) as the latter generally involves a specific donation that is tax deductible, while cause marketing is a relationship not necessarily based on a donation, but seen more as a business partnership. 

Traditionally high school sports programs dabble with cause marketing by working with local businesses in a variety of formats.  For some, it is printed programs or website ads; others are contributions made to a group based on traceable purchases; and still others offer discounts. There are also sponsorships of sport program related events and activities. 

Businesses return each year in support of Skyline football programs and products because they enjoy showing support to high school athletics.  But, they also recognize it is a wise investment, where they actually can qualify results.

"Don't treat this as a donation. Spartan fans want to do business with you, simply give them a reason... the stronger the better.  Make a value statement and Skyline parents will come running to your business … Advertising or sponsoring one or more of these offerings is a solid business proposition.”                                                                                                                                            Tony Rehn...Evergreen Chevrolet

Many experts recognize that there aren’t really that many original concepts to fundraising.  But it is taking something and customizing it for organizational use. Most high schools engage out-of-area companies to handle all of the work, while the sport or activity awaits a guaranteed contribution, typically resulting in the contractor maintaining the larger portion of the funds.   

On behalf of Skyline Football, the non-profit dedicated to advancing the football program, Skyline Gridiron Club (SGC) leads our own cause marketing campaigns by doing all projects ourselves by contacting local and national companies. This keeps a direct link between the business and our organization.  It is how businesses can see their marketing dollars actually working for them in the local economy. 

Offerings designed at building beneficial relationships with our football program - any size or type of business - carry messages to families and fans who are passionate about high school sports. Fans love supporting businesses who support their athletes. 

Cause marketing opportunities managed by the Skyline Gridiron Club include:   

Advertising – A growing method of reaching out into the community businesses, opportunities include:

Printed Programs – currently producing the Football and Basketball programs distributed for FREE at home games as well as delivered through other means. 

Digital – website ads with links to a business home page offers 24/7, 365 presence.

We work to keep everything local, from printing to distribution, so at the end of the day, companies can be assured that the maximum amount of resources stay in our local program and community.

Sponsorships – Events and activities where businesses have both a virtual and physical presence to interact with program parents and community members

Skills & Drills on the Hill – an annual three day clinic which started in 2008, held in June each year and hosted by the Spartans where other football programs from around the state bring athletes to participate in skilled and non-skilled contests.  25+ high schools participate.  Supporting sponsors in previous years include Powerade/Coca Cola, US Army, Sports Authority, Swedish Hospital, Costco, Evergreen Ford, Waste Management and more. 

Partnerships – Utilizing programs already in place with local businesses and leveraging them for both the company and the football program offers the “win-win” approach directly. 

Prep Sportswear – offering logoed merchandise as part of our website team shop, anyone can have Spartan gear shipped directly to their home and a portion of every sale is then remitted back to our program.  There are over 1200 items, plus there are other markets such as military and collegiate offerings.  And a portion of every sale comes back to our program. 

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