Sponsoring offline events -- such as concerts, sports, and festivals – can help marketers capture audiences and expose them to products. We spoke with Sean Brenner, Managing Editor of IEG Sponsorship Report, and John De Pietro of ABC/D Marketing to find out how marketers use events to reach women.
Unlike online and broadcast promotions, real-world sponsorships give your brand an opportunity to make a physical connection with consumers, says Brenner. Something as simple as having a kiosk at an event where staffers can walk visitors through live demos of your site can be very helpful for building brand recognition, he says.
Brenner cites the case of Egreetings Network Inc, which he recently covered in his newsletter. The company sponsored The Revlon Run/Walk for women in LA to benefit breast cancer research. “Egreeting’s primary audience is women, so they used this event to position themselves someplace that’s very important to women,” he says.
Often, sponsors can tie online activities to event preparations to drive traffic and stimulate the audience ahead of time. “Egreetings provided online pledge cards, so that the race participants could use their site to solicit pledges,” says Brenner. "They also had event-themed greeting cards that anyone could send to friends and family.” More than 400 event-themed cards were sent during the sponsorship’s first week.
Sponsors can also target women according to their choice of entertainment. An upcoming tour by country superstar (and one of the most successful recording artists of all time) Kenny Rogers could help get a dot-com brand in the minds of Rogers’ many female fans.
“The core audience is going to be adults 25-54, skewed 70/30 to women,” says ABC/D Marketing’s De Pietro, the tour’s promoter. He predicts that event sponsorships will be favored by many dot-coms because the combination of media attention, length of duration (as in a tour), and on-site contact with consumers delivers rapid branding for “young Internet companies that need to incubate much faster,” he tells us.
So, what kind of exposure do you get for roughly six figures? The sponsoring company will have its name printed on all the tickets for the show, signage on all the buildings, a reserved number of tickets per show, and a personal meet-and-greet with Mr. Rogers at every show (great for impressing clients!).
Live-audience reach would be somewhere around 100,000 for the entire tour, says De Pietro, but sponsors should also get branding from every aspect of event promotion. Rogers’ tour, for example, would be called “XYZ Company Presents Christmas from the Heart”. With a 30-show/30-city schedule running for approximately one month before Xmas, a strong PR campaign could have the sponsor’s name listed in major papers all over the United States on a daily basis.
Going beyond branding, many sponsors can physically get products in people’s hands. For example, De Pietro says, if it’s a food vendor, they could give away product samples right at the venue. Or, if it is a beauty site such as Eve.com or BeautyJungle.com, they could offer makeovers at the show complete with giveaways and samples.
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