Kings patch

Author Colton Seike, University of San Francisco

Posted: November 10, 2016

Tagged: Brand equity

Sponsors and professional sport organizations have long been working together and investing in one another. Sponsors are seen everywhere within professional sport organizations, such as on their merchandise, promotions and all around their arenas or stadiums. Sponsors have even reached jerseys in Major League Soccer (MLS) and the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA). Recently, the National Basketball Association (NBA) has allowed teams to advertise their sponsors on their jerseys beginning in 2017. Blue Diamond Growers, a Sacramento-based agricultural corporation who concentrate on almond sales, struck a deal to advertise and build their brand on the Sacramento Kings’ jerseys for 2017-2018 season.

The Sacramento Kings are building their brand with the Blue Diamond logo on their jerseys through perceptual design principles. Specifically, Blue Diamond and the Kings are working together to have a design that is similar to one another in both color and elements present. The color is often considered the most useful and embracing element of a design (Malkewitz & Bee, 2014, p. 94). The Blue Diamond color logo on the jersey is very similar to the colors of the Kings. The logo does not seem too bright or dark for their viewers to see. The logo shows a balance of colors that is often more pleasing and appropriate for visual attention. The similarity between Blue Diamond and the Kings is also present. As Blue Diamond uses a “diamond” figure as their logo, it makes it similar to a “kings” crown that is present on the Kings’ jerseys. The Blue Diamond logo and the Kings organization would then seem connected and grouped as one. Certain elements can have a lasting effect on brand and the Kings have positively effected their brand through the Blue Diamond perceptual logo design.

The Kings have also continued to build their brand through certain conceptual design principles with Blue Diamond’s logo being present on their jerseys. One specific design principle that is being used is through meaning and symbolism. Meaning and symbolism is often recognized and thought of as the “appropriateness” of a design (Malkewitz & Bee, 2014, p. 97). When people think of a “diamond,” they often think about a figure and meaning of perfection and purity. All over the world, people cherish diamonds and admire them when they are seen. Blue Diamond hopes to emulate their company as one that has perfection, respect and should be thought highly of. As the Kings are starting to use Blue Diamond as one of their main sponsors, it shows their high regard of the company and who they are. Blue Diamond uses the symbol and meaning of a “diamond” to perfection with their conceptual logo design with the Kings.

The last framework that the Kings have used to continually build their brand is by representing and symbolizing the city and region of Sacramento through Blue Diamond. Certain teams and organizations have often used the city or region’s image to their advantage to building their brand (Dalakas & Rose, 2014, p. 118). The Kings have gone into their region’s history of almond growing in California since the early 1900’s. By having Blue Diamond as one of their main sponsorships and representations, the Kings are connecting their past to their present and eventually future of their brand. Chris Granger, the Sacramento Kings’ President, said, “Blue Diamond is based here and produces the most recognizable brand that comes out of Sacramento” (Lombardo & Lefton, 2016, p. 3). The Kings have taken notice of their history and have used the city and region of Sacramento to their advantage by building their brand with Blue Diamond.

Organizations have to always consider every element in building their brand. Whether it is a color, meaning of a logo or a city’s history, certain elements could have a lasting effect on your brand. The Kings have positively effected their brand with their sponsor of Blue Diamond.



Dalakas, V., & Rose, G. (2014). Developing Brand Identity in Sport: Lions, and Tigers, and Bears Oh My. In M. P. Pritchard, & J. L. Stinson (Eds.), Leveraging Brands in Sport Business (pp. 109-122). New York, NY: Routledge.

Lombardo, J., & Lefton, T. (2016, October 10). Blue Diamond lands on Kings’ jersey, apron. SportsBusiness Journal, 19(26). Retrieved from

Malkewitz, K., & Bee, C. (2014). Undertaking Successful Brand Design in Sport. In M. P. Pritchard, & J. L. Stinson (Eds.), Leveraging Brands in Sport Business (pp. 89-108). New            York, NY: Routledge.

About Colton Seike, University of San Francisco

Colton Seike recently graduated from San Jose State University with a Bachelor of Science in Journalism and a double minor in Philosophy and Radio, Television and Film (RTVF). Currently, he is in the Sport Management graduate program at the University of San Francisco. As well as going to graduate school, Colton has worked for the San Francisco Giants’ baseball operations department for their High-A baseball club, the San Jose Giants, as the Assistant Clubhouse Manager. Colton hopes to further his experience and skills in baseball operations to one day become a general manager at the major league level. This is an edited version of a paper prepared for Dr. Michael M. Goldman’s Sport Marketing class at the University of San Francisco.

IImage by Blue Diamond Almonds,