Club Feature (kinda): Offside Marketing!

Hello weird and wonderful people of SmallWorld!

It’s time for another feature, but this one isn’t technically about a club. I make the rules here, so I can break them if I want. And I’m breaking them now. Because I want.

The exception today is made for Offside Marketing, recently announced as the first-ever sponsor of SmallWorld Soccer.

I’ve had people show interest in learning more about who exactly Offside is, so I’m glad to be able to give you a window into who exactly this fancy sponsor is.

Jason Lansdale, the face of Offside Marketing, was kind enough to share some details to that end. Get ready to learn a ton about the greatest sports marketing agency you’ve never heard of!

First, though, we have to make sure we’re all on the same page as far as what Offside actually is and does. I asked Jason, because I figured he would know. Turns out he did, which was fortunate.

Offside Marketing is a sports marketing and event planning house based in Cleveland, Ohio.  We offer a wide variety of sports marketing consulting services from event planning and production, sponsorship creation and development, soccer bar/pub marketing, supporter group events and fan fests to name a few.  

Jason Lansdale, highly knowledgeable about what his agency does

We are based in Cleveland, Ohio, however represent clients locally, across Ohio and the United States.  Originally I am from Southwest Ohio, between Dayton and Cincinnati. I’ve lived in Columbus, our state capital, for a few years after college, and been in Cleveland now for 15 years.  I have always thought that is unique and I can speak broadly to the many things Ohio provides.  

Jason Lansdale

So effectively, Offside is working behind the scenes to make soccer events, clubs, and other clients work well. One of their many success stories that’s pertinent to SmallWorld is their work with Cleveland SC.

Offside Marketing teamed up with Cleveland SC very early on in 2018, just a week or two after they formally approved as a new team in the NPSL.  We have assisted them with sports marketing, sponsorship development and event planning.  


Many have seen the brilliant jerseys that CSC had unrolled for the NPSL summer season, and the sponsor on those uniforms is Platform Beer Co. Offside Marketing, as it would turn out, actually had quite a bit to do with that connection!

Here at Offside Marketing, we feel that all teams should have a beer partner. Cleveland is a massive craft beer market. I connected him with Justin Carson, co-founder of Platform, and we had a long conversation just thereafter about a formal partnership and how we can compliment each other’s businesses.  It’s been a very solid partnership over the past 3 years, and has gained national attention in soccer media as a way to successfully partner between a soccer club and a craft beer producer. 

Jason, whose rapper name is would be Jay-Z

That’s a great look into the quality of work and results that Offside is delivering. It goes beyond individual clubs, though!

Another project we have enjoyed is working alongside the Cleveland International Film Festival (CIFF), one of the largest independent film festivals in the country.  The last 3 years we have had soccer-themed films as part of CIFF.  We have partnered with them to sponsor films and promote these films to the soccer community.

It’s amazing to see sports fans turn out for other events, especially those that support arts and culture.

Jason, known as JJ in 12 states (all of which are imaginary)

Yep, that’s the lower-league soccer community for you! We turn out and support what we care about, and it’s been awesome to see the connection that Offside has developed with that side of the community.

That’s awesome, but what exactly does the partnership between Offside and SmallWorld mean?

Talking with other smaller clubs and lower-league teams, I find many of them have unique and positive stories to share with soccer fans around the country.  This is why I am happy to support SmallWorld Soccer. The challenges of attracting mainstream PR and media for lower-league teams are immense.  In today’s hyper competitive market, its difficult to get your story out there in the first place, let alone gain that traction.  

Jason, no relation to the popular deli (I mean it’s possible but prolly not)

This is exactly what SmallWorld exists to do and why I personally put the effort and time into it. It’s to create that traction for clubs however I can. Offside doesn’t just see that vision, they share it.

The average lifespan for a lower-league club is around 1.5-2 years, mainly due to the financial challenges they face as they try and launch, attract strong financial backers, investors and sponsors. Speaking from experience, many companies and organizations struggle to sponsor something brand new, they want to see how it goes, see how consumers react before diving in. 

Being a small company, we certainly want to help other small startups grow and reach their potential. There is so much competition and challenges among lower league clubs, so all the support we can provide the better to help them stabilize and grow.

Jason, I’m out of witty things to say in the captions so…

This is why Offside and SmallWorld are teamed up. Yes, it allows for exposure for Offside and a chance for SmallWorld to grow in lots of cool ways. But for both of us, it’s really not about growing ourselves. This is about growing the game. Growing a better game.

Jason has especially focused on doing that in his native Cleveland:

Cleveland has so much to offer. Clevelanders are massive sports fans and we are blessed to have the big three pro teams for baseball, football and basketball, and a growing soccer scene which I have talked to in various media over the years.  Soccer here continues to flourish, we have a very large youth soccer scene in NE Ohio, and Cleveland has played host to the USMNT and USWNT each year from 2016-2019 either with friendlies and playing host to the Gold Cup twice in 2017, and 2019, respectively.  This has helped turn the region into a world-class destination for the beautiful game.  

Pretty sure you’re aware of who said this by now

He’s really out to use marketing to make soccer better, especially in his local Cleveland area. I think he’s well worth following, which you can do at, on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

Soon, we’ll be giving you a real-life application of some of this soccer prowess that affects American soccer fans around the nation. Stay tuned for more on that front, and thanks for taking a moment to learn more about our sponsor!

Support local soccer, unify those around you, and *seek out diversity*!




By danny kotula

danny kotula is an aspiring sports writer and play-by-play commentator. unfortunately, he is not good at either one. his interests include watching soccer and listening to obscure music genres, and those aren’t even his most boring ones. he was born in Tacoma, Washington but has called South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, Texas, California, Georgia, and Costa Rica home over the course of his life. he generally knows where to put a comma, which is by far his most redeeming quality. he is writing this in third person as if he were famous enough for someone to write him a biography, but don’t be fooled. he’s not famous.

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