Jul 29, 2011 at 02:57 PM
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HBR Lays Out Six Steps to Successful Sponsorship

In an excellent piece by Harvard Business Review, William Rosen, President & Chief Creative Officer of North America at Arc Worldwide, and Laurence Minsky, author of How to Succeed in Advertising When All You Have is Talent, lay out six key steps to making sponsorships successful. The general pitfall that marketers make, the authors say, is measuring the success of a sponsorship as an end in and of itself, rather than as a mechanism for delivering on broader brand objectives - just as other forms of media and marketing tactics might. Here's six tips they lay out to make your sponsorships more successful.

1. Clearly define your objectives. Determine which of your current goals or strategies the sponsorship can help achieve, versus creating new ones.

2. Identify your equity opportunity. Find the space you can actually "own" and what you can achieve with it.

3. Assess your partner's equity fit. There's nothing worse than partnering with a property that doesn't align with your current brand or where you want to take it. Make sure your partner will enable you to reach a key target and reinforce — or define — what you stand for.

4. Value what you bring to the table. Every successful sponsorship also helps the promotional partner. Jay-Z's Facebook page increased by one million fans during Bing's promotional period, which helped his book reach #2 on The New York Times best seller list the week after launch. Use the value you bring to the table to negotiate opportunities; otherwise, you may overpay.

5. Look for ways to activate the sponsorship across all relevant channels. By understanding all of the ways your target moves toward transaction, you can utilize the sponsorship to create value and drive key behaviors. You can also utilize the sponsorship to activate your sales force, retailers, distributors, and internal departments — all of which add return to your investment.

6. Capture data and measure results. Clear objectives should drive opportunities for measurement and optimization, which will be the key to quantifying and improving sponsorship ROI moving forward.

Read more about what it takes to make a sponsorship successful >>