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Turn off the Beats

by David Rachell
20 10 2014

The NFL fined San Francisco quarterback Colin Kaepernick for wearing Beats by Dre headphones at a news conference following the Niner’s win over the Kansas City Chiefs.  The NFL’s new Bose sponsorship is exclusive and therefore the NFL has banned any other headphone brand to appear in or around NFL activity.  

While it may seem audacious, the NFL should prevent players from wearing, eating, drinking, playing or performing in or around any NFL event that doesn’t include official sponsors.  It may be their football, their rules, but the NFL is protecting their brand, players and sponsors.

Cam Newton, Richard Sherman, Barry Church and other players were also spotted wearing their Beats by Dre’s this weekend around the stadium.  These players are seemingly defying the NFL because they think it’s important to protect their individual sponsors.  But, here’s what these players DON’T understand.
The NFL is protecting their sponsors, sponsors that make it feasible for Cam Newton, Richard Sherman, Colin Kaepernick and other players to enjoy big contracts.  If the NFL doesn’t protect Bose, they set the precedent for future sponsors.  The value erodes when a property doesn’t protect their agreements.  Players should not only be fined, but suspended without pay for defying sponsor agreements.  It sounds harsh, but as old trekies would site, “the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.”

The same rule applies whether you’re running a professional football league or a local little league. Whether a festival or event producer, you have an obligation to protect your sponsor because in reality, you’re protecting your event too.  You’re assuring and protecting the integrity of your sponsorship program and the reputation of your organization within the sponsorship world. 

If you have a rogue vendor that decides to bring their own water to sell rather than use the official water of you’re event, you need to lose that vendor. Believe me, the lost vendor fee is not worth losing the integrity of your sponsorship program.  After all, it’s your football, your rules and your reputation.

Categories:   contracts | General | industry happenings
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Secret Strategies for Setting Sponsorship Prices

by David Rachell
17 02 2014

In January, SponsorPark hosted a webinar with sponsorship guru Ron Seaver. Ron offered attendees great advice on how to approach potential sponsors. Developing relationships with sponsors isn’t about making them understanding what you do, but rather your understanding of THEIR organizational needs.

Corporate sponsors simply aren’t that interested in your organizational mission or cause, but rather how you can help them use their relationship with you to reach their business objectives. While it sounds harsh, it’s not because they do not “care.” It’s because they have goals and objectives to meet and sponsorship is a tactic employed in meeting those objectives. It’s your job to showcase how your event or organization will be able to help them meet those objectives. This requires research and a strong game plan demonstrating your understanding of their needs.

Ron had intended to site resources and provide additional information during the webinar, but we weren't able to fit all of that great information and answer your questions in just one hour. So, Ron as graciously agreed to come back and present the Secret Strategies for Setting Sponsorship Prices and expounding on the past webinar. The webinar will be held Thursday, February 20, from 2 – 3 p.m. CST.

How the value for a sponsorship opportunity is derived is so important for sponsorship sellers to understand. So, Ron is going to share insight into some of the tactics companies use to garner that value and how you can meet those expectations. Sign up to attend the webinar by going here.

Remember, now through March 4, you can sign up for Ron Seaver’s Sponsorship Boot Camp April 3-4 in San Diego and receive 2 full-registrations for the price of one. AND you will also receive a year’s subscription to SponsorPark.com’s Premium Membership. Information on the Boot Camp and sign up instructions are available by going to here.

Categories:   General | Sponsorship resources | sponsorship sales | Sponsorship Valuation
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A new year brings new opportunities

by David Rachell
8 01 2014

Sponsorship marketing is now one of the fastest growing forms of adverting according to the Association of National Advertisers. Sponsorship is becoming more mainstream on main street, as smaller businesses look to use sponsorship as a way to differentiate their products and services and stand out above the advertising noise.

It’s also important for rights holders to stand out above the noise. So, here are five ways to better your sponsorship acquisition efforts for 2014.

1. Be prepared to report on your deliverables
Sponsors are being required to justify their sponsorship spending now more than ever. It’s vital to justify outcomes and the deliverables provided to sponsors as part of the value created through the relationship. As a rights holder, you need to do all you can to help the brand justify their spending. If you aren’t able to justify your fees, it makes it easier for the sponsor to say no to you and yes to those who can.

2. Strengthen your social media
Sponsorships provide one of the best methods for organically building a brand’s social media. Rights holders who provide a rich social media platform to engage consumers have a greater chance to garner sponsors.

3. Build activation for your sponsorship that outlasts your event
Even local or regional companies are less apt to sponsor one-day events or activities. Sponsors want to be able to activate against their sponsorship portfolio with events that last longer than a day or two. While your event may only last a day, try and create ways for sponsors to be part of your organization or fan experience long before and after.

4. Deepen Fan Engagement
As a rights holder, you should be seeking partners that are going to provide a greater experience for your attendees, not just a check writer and sign maker. Greater fan engagement means you provide your consumers a better experience and an opportunity to grow your event while also creating a platform for a more successful sponsor.

5. Well Educated Sales Team
Brand managers have a richer selection of good sponsorship opportunities to choose from today. Your sponsorship program must not only provide great benefits and activation options, but industry knowledge by rights holder representation is critical. More times than not, brand managers know when someone understands the business and benefit values. So, instead of trying to snow them, wow them with your understanding of their needs.
Your sales team should research the industry and the companies they target. Make sure you subscribe to industry magazines and research articles, look for quality online content, go to seminars and training to learn about what sponsors are looking for from rights holders.

Categories:   General | industry happenings | Sponsorship resources
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