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Brand Sponsorship

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Definition Of Brand Sponsorship

Brand sponsorship is a marketing strategy in which a brand is supporting an event, activity, person or organization. Everywhere we go we can witness sponsorship investments: music festival, football games, beneficial events and so on. Sponsorship allows big, medium and small brands to partner with other companies as well as event agencies in order to generate a relationship that aims to economically gratify both the sponsor and the sponsee.  But how does it really work and what is the expected return?

Breaking Down Brand Sponsorship

A well-known scenario is when a global brand (let’s think of Coca-Cola) spend a lot of money to become official sponsor of the World-Cup. What are the benefits coming from this investment?

  • Increase brand awareness/visibility: whether you are a newborn brand or a well-established company, sponsoring is an activity that can help you gain awareness or increase your visibility addressing a broader target.
  • Increase your sales/acquire customers: this is the ultimate goal for every business. Getting to the top of the mind of new or existing customers not only increase awareness but can also directly drive sales, according to how the sponsorship is coherent with your marketing plan.
  • Gain publicity: can you imagine a startup that get to be the sponsor of an important event or sport club? Seems like a natural consequence that media will talk about this. Furthermore, people will share news on social networks. As a result, you can gain good exposure – all this for free!
  • Differentiate from the competition: if you find yourself in a very competitive and profit-shrinking market, being the sponsor of a big event or organization can give you the chance to stand out as a leader in your field
  • Increase brand loyalty/premium prices: true especially for sport sponsorship. In fact, it is statistically proven that, for example, fans of a particular team are more willing to buy from the sponsor than from its competitors. This leads to brand loyalty, which leads itself to customers being less sensitive to premium prices
  • Increase your CSR reputation/brand image: finallysponsoring a charitable event or a foundation can enhance your brand image as a caring company. As a result, you will be able to witness a profit increase in the long term.

4 tips to streamline your sponsorship process

Most corporations receive a large number of sponsorship requests. That alone can be hard to administrate but having offices in different locations following the same workflow can be an even bigger challenge. With the assistance of Optimy’s Corporate Sponsorship software, organizations can achieve their goal of streamlining every step of the sponsorship process.

At Optimy, we are all about equipping you with the right tools and resources to reduce the everyday administrative burden. Way too often corporations rely on manual processes leading to error, and that combined with the lack of a streamlined cross-departmental process can result in an overwhelmed sponsorship manager who doesn’t have the time to do all of their tasks.

"Hang-ups

Hang-ups in the sponsorship process

Much of a Sponsorship Manager workday is spent trying to be on top of everything and gathering information, asking applicants for the exact amount they would need for an event, requesting status updates, or questioning what other brands will be involved in the project. Yet, few Sponsorship Managers, use a tool to centralize all their requests in one place in an organized matter. Most receive sponsorship requests by email and suffer from missing data in a never-ending back-and-forth email thread. This is even more true when the organization has offices in different regions, and every one of them requires specific information from the sponsorship applicant.

Another big challenge in the sponsorship process is choosing the right applicants. Often, different groups of people are involved in decision-making, and communication is a big challenge. At times, the exact criteria used to choose which events to sponsor is not clear to all people involved in the process, which can lead to frustration for all parties.

Standardizing the sponsorship process across different regions is, once again, a big challenge for multi-branch corporations. Many colleagues only get involved in the sponsorship process a few times a year and can have a hard time remembering the framework they should follow. Sponsorship Managers can get confused about what to do after accepting the sponsorship request. Should they ask for a contract? Should they set up the payment? What other documents would they need?

The real struggle: sponsorship budgeting

The real struggle: sponsorship budgeting

All of those processes are common pain points for Sponsorship Managers but the one keeping most sponsorship professionals up at night is, of course, the budgeting. Dealing with different regions that have different sponsorship budgets can be even more troubling.

Many corporations use a combination of different tools to solve the above-mentioned problems. But one big issue remains: most platforms are not compatible with each other, resulting in spread data and confused sponsorship managers. However, this can all go away with a good sponsorship management system.

 What a sponsorship management system can do for you

This is what a sponsorship management system can do for you:

Easily collect applications 

A multi-branch corporation can start streamlining the sponsorship process with Optimy’s forms. They can receive all sponsorship requests in one central spot and ask all relevant questions for their decision process via online forms. Many of these questions can be made mandatory, so they ensure to have all information needed. Moreover, Optimy’s software allows back-end users to see if someone has started filling out an application, even if they haven’t submitted it yet. That allows the Sponsorship Manager to identify the blocking questions and even reach out to applicants to answer questions.

Sponsorship managers can also add different questions depending on the applicant’s location since Optimy allows admins to set up forms in different parts; this way, the questions applicants have will differ depending on their answer to previous questions.

Save time selecting applications

With Optimy, sponsorship managers can establish clear criteria with the Automatic Scoring, Automatic Delegation, and the Automatic filtering features. This is how the Automatic Scoring works: you add to the form a question asking applicants if exclusivity in the sponsorship of events is offered, for example. Those sponsorship seekers that reply ‘yes’ to that question have a higher score than the ones that reply ‘no.’ These criteria can guide offices in different locations so they can better choose applicants and keep a consistent quality of sponsorship projects.

Another automation that will streamline multi-branch corporation’s sponsorship projects is the Automatic Filtering feature. This functionality is helpful when you receive many sponsorship requests for events that don’t match your target audience. Imagine this: you spend hours of your time reviewing an application just to find out, in the end, that this grant seeker doesn’t meet the profile. So on top of wasting your time reading the application, you still have to send an email informing the grant seeker they didn’t meet the criteria. With this feature, Sponsorship Managers can have a standard decline template inside of Optimy’s solution, and automatically send off emails when a sponsorship request doesn’t match the corporation’s needs.

Leave no task behind

The Automatic Delegation feature can be handy when a specific sponsorship request is automatically delegated to the team member responsible for managing that specific region. This makes sure that no request goes answered and that Sponsorship Managers only get involved in projects that concern them.

Sponsorship managers can also have their workflow eased with Optimy. Once the exact workflow is conveniently established inside the tool, Optimy’s dashboard tells you what you should do via the Tasks feature. After each task is completed, the system triggers the next one, ensuring that errands such as payments, staffing event booths, and receiving logos all get done in the sponsorship process.

Admins can also follow all the tasks across all the users, making sure that all the steps are being followed in all the branches.

Save money with smart budgeting 

As previously mentioned, managing budgets is the main headache for sponsorship managers, and Optimy can be a great ally to manage sponsorship budgets.

This feature allows you to set specific amounts for specific regions, being able to track everything in real-time, so you can know how much of the budget is still to be allocated. You can even establish sub-categories. This means that every region can have a specific budget for different types of sponsorship activities, such as hockey events,  health workshops, and education seminars. And the head of the sponsorship activities can easily see and track all the region’s data in a user-friendly dashboard.

Optimy vs Excel

Final thoughts 

With Optimy’s tool, a multi-branch corporation can improve its workflow in every step of its sponsorship process. You no longer have problems with standardizing the sponsorship process across different offices and locations. All sponsorship requests are collected, selected, managed, and reported via Optimy, making the process 5 times faster than when tracked with excel.

According to a Sponsorship Manager with offices in several locations, Optimy is a game-changer: “Now, our staff feels empowered to make data-driven decisions with Optimy. I’m a big fan of the tool. Optimy is clean, organized, and easy to use. It’s a solution that can be used by any company, big or small.”   Wondering in which other ways Optimy can help your organization?

Learn More

Useful Links

Why should luxury brands collaborate with fast fashion retailers?

Why should brands sponsor music festivals? The example of Mercedes–Benz

Sponsorship, a way to increase your brand awareness: the example of Huawei

How a sponsorship deal can improve brand loyalty? The example of Heineken

Building a new brand image thanks to sponsorship : IBM example

Why should you be a sponsor

[Infographics] Sports Sponsorship

Image source

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