At a glance:
This paper explores five observations about major sponsors and their relationship with their key properties:
Global and major brands have clearly defined marketing objectives and strategies designed to reach, communicate to and with, touch, involve, engage and persuade their target market. Sponsorship is now one, but important, element in the marketing mix to reach these objectives.
Sponsors expect more of properties and rights holders than in the past. In today’s World they do not want properties to simply act as just a “supplier” and sell them their stock, off-the-shelf product that they offer to all potential sponsors. They are not interested in just standard logo and signage type assets that only provide visibility, but instead seek innovative methods of touch and engagement that will enhance the experience and “stickiness” of their sponsorship.
Sponsors are looking for sustainable partnerships where properties become “strategic partners” and work with them in the same way as their other marcomms agencies and professional services partners – advertising, PR etc. - helping to contribute to the success of the brand through a deep understanding of the sponsor’s specific business needs.
Research indicates that not only is there a lack of open communication between sponsors and rights holders, but that many in their organisations do not understand the benefits of sponsorship.
Whilst there is a wealth of quantitative information to evaluate the effectiveness, impact and return on investment of sponsorships, there appear to be serious gaps:
o The qualitative research and stakeholder feedback areas are the most important, but least undertaken.
o Evaluation of the relationship and partnership, with agreed KPIs and performance reviews, is rarely undertaken
o There is a need for a “whole-of-sponsorship” evaluation tool that pulls together both the quantitative and qualitative measures for ROI and ROO, as the basis for mid-season or annual review meetings.