sponsorship negotiation Archives - Power Sponsorship

Negotiating and Managing Multi-Brand Sponsorship

I tell sponsorship seekers all the time, “Don’t approach the company, approach the brand”. The underlying principle is that companies will generally have one brand that is clearly the best fit for a sponsorship opportunity. This is true for sponsors, as well, and most sponsors have embraced brand sponsorship as the default position for investment. There are, of course, a couple of exceptions. The first is when a sponsorship creates a platform that is large, relevant, and flexible enough that it can be leveraged across an entire portfolio of brands. An example would be if Kellogg’s sponsored the World Cup. They could make that work across their brand portfolio and most, if not all, regions. […] Read More

The Bear Grylls Guide to Sponsorship Renewals

A few years ago, when Bear Grylls took over from Mike Rowe as my favourite Discovery Channel hunk, I never thought I’d see the day that Man vs Wild would be gone. It is, but I think we can all agree that we’ve learned a lot: Colourful caterpillars are poisonous; pull the stingers off scorpions before you eat them; and it is possible (though unpleasant) to sleep inside of a camel carcass. What we would have also noticed is that no matter where he is, there is a process he goes through to get himself safely back to civilisation. That process, as it happens, very closely mirrors the process for renewing a sponsor. So, with […] Read More

How to Right-Size Your Sponsorship Leverage Activities

Any regular reader of this blog knows that I talk a lot about sponsorship being win-win-win. That third win is for the target markets, with the goal being small, meaningful benefits for all or most of the market, not a chance to go into a draw for one person to win one big prize. The question is, then, what do you do with benefits or leverage activities that are, by their very nature, limited in size? How do you make that a win for everyone… and should you even try? As usual, I’ve got a few tricks up my sleeve! Know how the third win works Providing that third win is about adding real value to a […] Read More

Sponsors: 4 Renewal Strategies for Getting the Most from Your Partners

You’ve been sponsoring a property for a while and renewal time is coming up. Sometimes, what you need to do is a no-brainer; the experience was either so great or so bad, you know whether to renew or walk away. Not this time, though. You value the opportunity, and may have even achieved great results, but the experience of being a sponsor hasn’t been great. Some of the typical scenarios include: They promised the world and failed to deliver. They played fast and loose with the contract or hit you with extra fees whenever they could. Their lack of flexibility or vision meant you couldn’t mount a leverage strategy that would have been good for […] Read More

Lance Armstrong and the Future of Sponsorship

Like the rest of the world, I just finished watching Oprah’s interview with Lance Armstrong. And like the rest of the world, the revelation that he’s a cheat came as no real surprise. What was surprising was how utterly devoid of contrition it was. One of the alarmingly few emotional moments was when he talked about his sponsors and “losing $75 million in one day”. We weren’t watching a heartfelt confession; we were watching Sociopathy 101**. Although there is a temptation to plunge headlong into an analysis of the interview itself, I’m going to try to control myself. Honestly, the whole thing has been analysed to death. What I’m going to address is what it […] Read More

Can Sponsors Help Teams Sell Tickets?

That was the question I had to address at a conference last week. My opinion? Of course sponsors can help teams sell tickets! Great sponsors are not only adding value to the event experience, but they’re engendering advocacy for that experience – both critical factors for developing and growing an audience. That said, I think most teams who want to go down this track are setting themselves up for failure. There are three key reasons: Teams have a tradition of selling out their audience Let’s be honest here. More often than not, teams are happy to put a price tag on all manner of intrusive, disrespectful sponsorship “benefits”. You want to scream at our fans […] Read More

What is the Role of a Corporate Sponsorship Manager?

I’ve written blog after blog after article after book about the collaborative nature of sponsorship; how it requires both broad buy-in and a commitment to leverage from a range of stakeholders; and that brand managers are generally the ones who approve sponsorship spend. So, if sponsorship decisions and leverage are being spread across various decision-makers, do we still need sponsorship managers? To that, I answer an emphatic “yes”. They fill a number of critical roles to doing sponsorship truly well. Gatekeeper Let’s face it. Being a gatekeeper is a big part of most sponsorship managers’ jobs – somebody has to sift through the hundreds or thousands of proposals your company receives every month. The thing […] Read More

6 Critical Strategies for Sponsorship Negotiation

In the past, I’ve tackled a lot of aspects of negotiation, but I haven’t really blogged about the basics of the whole negotiation process before. It’s probably about time. Many of us grew up during a time when negotiation was seen as largely a win-lose prospect. It was adversarial, with the ultimate goal to get as much as you can for as little as you can, without thought for the other side. In many circumstances, we still see negotiation that way. We’re not going to offer more for a house that we have to, just because we know the seller is under financial duress. No, we’ll offer even less, hoping for the bargain of a […] Read More

We Only Sponsor if We Can Get Naming Rights

I hear that phrase with alarming regularity, and it takes every fibre of self-control I have not to just tell those sponsors to put it back in their pants. Come to think of it, I probably have said that to sponsors once or twice. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not knocking naming rights sponsorship – in the right circumstances, and for the right reasons. But as a blanket strategy, you’ve lost me. If you find naming rights to be the default position, or the position that your company is focussed on far too often, there are some strategies that can put naming rights back in the category of “option”. Create a sponsorship group Much of […] Read More

Should You Have Opt-Out Clauses in your Sponsorship Contracts?

I was recently involved in a debate about whether multi-year contracts are preferable to year-to-year deals. I make no bones about my preference for multi-year deals (in most cases), but there was a compromise suggestion put forward that had me, frankly, gobsmacked. One sponsorship seeker said that their standard contract was for three years, with an annual review, where the sponsor could opt out of the rest of the contract. Several others chimed in saying that either sounded like a great idea or that they were doing that now. Ummm… not to put too fine a point on it, but how is that any different than a year-to-year contract, functionally? If a sponsor can just […] Read More