David Corelli from TrojanOne is truly passionate about sponsorship and how it is an important business tool that can solve problems throughout an organization. In one of the first sessions of the day, he spoke to a full room about the five business priorities that can be advanced using strategic sponsorships: consumer perception, employee engagement, earned media, new business relationships and community engagement.
Sponsorship can be used to improve consumer perception, whether you’re launching a new product (like Gatorade did when they established G Series as a performance enhancing product) or trying to establish a new positioning (like RONA’s partnership with the 2010 Vancouver Olympic Games, which established them as a company that cares about Canadians). Employee engagement is also a key problem that sponsorship can help solve, as examples from CIBC and AON demonstrate. These two organizations were both able to use sponsorship to transcend cultural and geographic boundaries and unite their employees. Earned media impacts a company’s bottom line more than advertising ever could, and can also provide one of the fastest returns, as Red Bull and Speed Skating Canada have proven with their sponsorship programs. New business relationships can also be formed through partnerships, as GE learned when they entered China for the Beijing Olympics. Finally, grassroots community engagement is one of the most important ways to maximize ROI – companies can make themselves locally relevant by becoming a part of the important moments in their community. Macy’s localization initiative, My Macy’s, is a great example of engaging communities.
During the question period, David discussed ROI measurement and how to prove the value of your sponsorship investment.