Jun 24, 2009 at 06:19 PM
written by Michael Munson

Sponsorship Marketing's Top 10 II

OK, my 10-6 ideas of the Top 10 issues in sponsorship marketing didn’t illicit many comments on the blog. Fear not. I can report that I did talk to and get direct comments from several people about my list that pretty much validated it. My biggest takeaway: there is great passion for this business. No doubt about it.

The good news is I did get some new ideas I wasn’t thinking of necessarily contemplating for issues five to one of my list. So without further adieu, here are five more topics in the Top 10 issues in sponsorship marketing.

5. Valuation

Doing a proper valuation is time well spent. It’s difficult to be in a position to build a partner’s business when you don’t know all the available assets you have to sell. Standard valuation methods, like those from IEG, provide a certain framework for analysis, but do they really provide a true representation of what an individual property has to offer a given company or brand, especially by category?

4. Smaller companies are sponsors too

Joe Waters is absolutely right. We seem to fixate our sponsorship seeking efforts on the major brands that are so conspicuous, and rightly so. However, there are many, many smaller companies out there that would love to have the opportunity to activate sponsorships. Is it time an effort was made to bring these smaller companies into the conversation when talking about what is happening in the marketplace?

3. CAO: Chief Activation Officer

One of the more interesting suggestions from last week was that properties should establish a dedicated person in charge of managing activations for sponsors. Part of the role would be to require the sponsor to commit to an activation plan as part of the deal. Might such an arrangement increase ROI knowledge, improve quantifiable value, increase renewals or end bad partnerships quickly so better ones can be formed?

2. Sharing information about deals

There seems to be a definite and hardened difference of opinion on this one. Some people believe knowing more – at least in general terms – about what their peers are doing, helps everyone. Others feel strongly that sharing information about what they are doing is a competitive disadvantage. Can/should we come to agreement on some limited set of information we share about deals being done?

1. Free sponsorship

Many of us on the leading edge of sponsorship thought decry the idea of Gold, Silver, Bronze sponsorship packages with arbitrary entitlements of dubious real value. But perhaps there is an upside to them in down times. Might these pre-defined packages with simple assets be perfect for giving a potential future sponsor a way to sample your property and get a taste for what it offers, without having to make a financial commitment?

So there you have it, combined with last week’s 10-6, that is my Top 10. To re-cap:

10. Are property assets outdated?

9. IEG’s market size numbers

8. Defining media buys vs. media sponsorship vs. sponsorship

7. Sponsors failing to activate, then blaming the property for not delivering value

6. It’s the end customer, stupid

5. Valuation

4. Smaller companies are sponsors too

3. CAO: Chief Activation Officer

2. Sharing information about deals

1. Free sponsorship

Ultimately, I’d like to have this be a real time list of the issues y’all find important, and know which ones of you find them important, so we can improve our dialogue and share ideas about what we find relevant to discuss and learn about in sponsorship marketing. In time, we’ll also determine who the experts on various topics are, and we’ll all be better off for it.

Whether you want to make public comments, or contact me privately, please let me know which of these or other topics you’d like to learn more about. I’ll aim to find people who are thinking about or doing something about what you find compelling, and will write about them here in the future.

Mike can be reached by email at mike@sponsorpitch.com and on Twitter at @mjmunson.