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Increasing The Return On Sponsorship

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You may not have the reputed £60 million budget of top 2012 Olympic sponsors Coke, P&G and McDonald’s but sponsorship, even at a much smaller level, can be an extremely successful form of brand marketing.

The benefits of event sponsorship primarily revolve around brand positioning – implicit endorsement, being seen to contribute to a community, supporting the passion of individuals, association with other sponsors etc.

Unfortunately, many sponsorship opportunities are badly negotiated by marketers. The typical sponsorship package includes logos being placed on event collateral, access to delegates list, signage at the event and rights to distribute flyers.

Bringing in experiential marketing expertise to the mix can have significant positive effects on the return on your marketing dollar. For example, a sign is a one dimensional non interactive representation of your logo; experiential marketing activity on the other hand brings your brand to life by tapping into the senses and interacting with your target market. No matter how much loving attention your graphics guys put into your signage... it’s still a just a sign. There’s no narrative, no engagement and no emotion. Additionally the attendees are focused on their objectives e.g. to watch the game, learn from seminars, network etc.

Negotiating an experiential element as part of the event package can be hugely significant in terms of the success of the marketing investment. Bringing the brand past the one dimensional by appealing to the senses or the emotions maximises the sponsorship investment.

In recent research conducted by Experiential Marketing Forum/IMI there was a significant uplift from using experiential together with signage; brand conversion showed a 5 times increase on residual impact on campaigns that used signage and activation.

Sponsorship Effectiveness

The most common means of achieving this is through sampling or providing additional value. It’s a no brainer. If you are going to sponsor that event then it really pays to invest in some kind of activation as part of the package.

Experiential marketing agencies are able to help marketers get a better return on event sponsorship marketing investment from providing promotional staff to sourcing samples, to creating next stage calls to action.

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