Sponsorship can be a powerful part of a brand’s overall marketing mix. Many companies allocate as much as 25% of their total marketing budget to various local, regional, and national sponsorship activities. In addition to meeting a brand’s marketing objectives, a sponsorship built on shared values and strategic alignment can also provide a strong platform to advance other corporate objectives in areas such as sustainability, inclusivity, innovation, government relations and employee engagement.
As advertising media becomes more and more fragmented, sponsorship can be an important way to break through the clutter and build awareness, engagement, and trust with current and potential customers. According to Nielsen’s 2021 Trust in Advertising Study, 81% of global respondents completely or somewhat trust brand sponsorships at sporting events. In addition to this high level of trust, sponsorship can also drive purchase behaviour. In an analysis of 100 sponsorships in seven markets across 20 industries, Nielsen also found that sponsorship drove a 10% lift in purchase intent amongst the exposed fanbase.
Within a sponsorship, brands can drive value through a wide range of rights and benefits including:
- Field of play brand visibility
- Customized digital content
- Broadcast and streaming integration
- Hospitality, and “can’t buy” experiences
- On-site activation including data capture and product trial
In certain situations, sponsorships can also become the best case study you have, providing the opportunity to prominently showcase your brand’s products or services on a regional, national, or even global stage. According to the Canadian Sponsorship Landscape Study, up to 20% of all sponsorship rights fees are delivered through in-kind products and services.
If approached properly, a sponsorship can often deliver direct business results. Whether revenues are driven through the sponsorship property itself, their fans or participants, there can be immediate bottom line benefit. A properly integrated sponsorship should be both a marketing and a business partnership.
If you haven’t considered sponsorship as part of your marketing plans, you’re missing the opportunity to engage with your customers at their true point of passion.
Example Left: First-time partner, Sonos became the Official Sound Experience Partner for the 2021 JUNO Awards. In honour of the 50th Anniversary, Sonos created “All Our Sound” Radio, an exclusive radio station celebrating the history of Canadian musical artists. All Our Sound Radio launched globally to 16 markets, and garnered over 150,000 listening hours within the first 3 months. The station featured some of the biggest hits from the past 50 years, along with personal anecdotes from their favourite Canadian artists, sharing the songs that have influenced and inspired their careers.
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