Digitally Activated: Sports Centered

A Look at Online Sports Activations

Retail Partners: The Ace in Your Sponsorship Portfolio

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Take less money from retailers to increase your sponsorship revenue.

An argument I contrived out of a conversation with a colleague two weeks ago.  We were speculating on how the Facebook Deals announcement could improve the activation practices of our partners.  I postulated that a retail partner (Partner A) could reward shoppers/fans that checked in with a $15 coupon off the purchase of Partner B’s product.   This practice would serve to increase traffic to Partner B’s isle, which I envisioned being complete with an in-store display highlighting Partner A and B’s sponsorship of our property.  The in-store activation would serve to help Partner A and B monetize their sponsorship investment, and strengthen Partner A and B’s brand image with our fan base and Partner A’s shoppers.   The logistical concerns of working with these partners caused us to question the feasibility of the promotion; however, this will be the future of retail activation for sponsors.  Sports Authority’s, Black Friday promotion demonstrated that we are approaching that moment. 

Shoppers that checked in at a Sports Authority on Black Friday were entered to win one of 20, $500 gift certificates to be distributed nationwide.  My mind immediately jumped to a joint promotion between Sports Authority and adidas.  The possibility of incorporating adidas MLS / Mexican National Team gear into the store’s promotion had me nearing delirium (Sports Authority is not one of our partners).    

It was through these ideas that I came to realize the necessity of having retailers as strategic partners.  Retailers that are invested and value their sponsorship, are more likely to provide a property’s partners with the right to conduct in-store promotions and secure prefered isle space; these relationships can and should be leverage by properties to provide prospective sponsors with action items to consider during the recruitment process. 

A requirement has been placed on properties to demonstrate that they can advance the business objectives of prospective partners.  Providing prospects the opportunity to conduct experiential sweepstakes, ticket discounts and offer coupons to fans/shoppers at retail demonstrates a desire to help partners monetize their sponsorship investment.  Furthermore, the ability to design an unquestionable ROI evaluation practice with retailers, is a undeniable benefit for potential sponsors.  

A property that can deliver prefered retail space to prospective partners, transforms their selling points from points of conjecture (impressions, on-site activation and fan avidity) to quantifiable and desired results of retail-activation.  In a post-Great Recession Era, what is quantifiable is valuable.

The capacity to evaluate the number of sales generated at a retail location during a specified time period – attributable to the partner’s sponsorship investment – will enable a property to develop a compelling renewal argument; especially, when traditional benefits such as impressions and on-site activation are included.  

Securing retailers as strategic partners enable properties to offer partners a forum to translate their enhanced brand image into sales.  Furthermore, retailers allow the property and its partners to extend their engagement with fans beyond the traditional in-venue, living room and bar experience.  The more meaningful the benefits delivered to the shopper/fan, the more equity the partners will derive from their partnership.  The greater the equity, the more valuable the sponsorship is for all parties involved – especially the property.

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Written by Peter Amador

November 28, 2010 at 10:48 AM

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