Strategies for event sponsors – Marketing as a whole is evolving, and specifically sponsorships at events. For quite some time now, it is proven that event goers no longer purchase tickets. They purchase the experience. The same is true for products. This is accomplished by affecting the way customers feel. Event sponsorship is a very relevant marketing tactic as ticketholders have already been sold on a positive experience, and they will then associate that emotion with the brands at the events. If your competitors have a better sponsorship strategy, then your company will be outshined.
So how do you stay on the cutting edge of branding at events?
Throwing money at a generic sponsorship for an event is not going to yield nearly as high of a return. Instead, sponsors need to establish a relationship with the event organizer to incorporate their brand into specific attendee experiences. You need the event staff on your side to turn them into brand ambassadors. Consider sending some of your own staff to help promote your brand.
Target high end branding placements
Upgrade from a general banner placement to a premium VIP branding location and name. As an example, you could sponsor a Spectator Suite at an outdoor event and get exclusive naming rights to the space. The *insert your company name* VIP Lounge sounds a lot better than an unnamed bleacher ad. This will attract the attention of the general public to the exclusive space.
Impact specific people
Strategies for event sponsors does not include a shotgun approach. Unless your company is as large as Coca-Cola, focus on targeting a specific group at specific events. The answer is not paying to get your logo on the sitemap that everyone glances at once. This might work if you’re selling tacos – as almost everyone wants tacos. Instead, think about hosting a grab and go area before an event for a certain level ticket holder. Or target VIPs during a show. Make sure you have your target identified.
Today, people look right past cheap “swag.” In fact, it may hurt your brand overall. Someone looking for a free give away is most likely not your target customer. These items will undoubtedly end up in a landfill. Get creative and try to work with local companies on a sustainable giveaway. Anything from renewable or recycled products with your branding will work. A blank canvas print with your logo is a great way to involve a local artist. Have the artist create some quick drawings related to the event. Then it will be hung on a wall for some time.
Continue Branding After the Event
The work does not stop when the event is over. Ensure your sponsorship comes with the names and addresses of your target customer. You will not be able to get an email list due to the CAN-SPAM act, but your ad team should be able to create an audience persona to market to based on their data. Now you can even do Geo-Framing “to build an audience known to have been at a specific location within a certain timeframe.”
Ultimately, your job as a sponsor is to connect with your targeted audience. Immerse them in your brand with a personalized experience at your next event.