Monday, April 22, 2013 | Edited by Daniel Moores
||The Key to Sponsor Servicing: Post-Event Fulfillment Reports
Increased Frequency, Timely Delivery and Third-Party Research Are Critical to Post-Event Recap Reports
Do you provide post-event fulfillment reports? If you do offer them, do you include relevant information and deliver them in a timely manner?
If not, it's time to get with the program.
Post-event recap reports consistently rank at the top of sponsor lists in terms of the most valuable property-provided services. According to the 2012 IEG/Performance Research Sponsorship Decision-Makers Survey, fulfillment reports tied audience research as the most important property-provided service.
Post-event reports benefit properties in the following ways:
"Post-event reports are absolutely necessary. Partnerships are harder to put together nowadays, and proof of performance is no different than when I buy media to promote my events. I want to get what I pay for, and something more," said Kevin Camper, senior vice president of sales and marketing with Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
- Help sponsors justify their investments
- Build internal support at sponsoring companies
- Demonstrate how rightsholders have gone beyond terms of a contract
- Set the stage for renewal discussions
The documents helped LVMS renew Lowe's Companies, Inc. and Boyd Gaming Corp. Lowe's titles LVMS's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on behalf of Kobalt Tools, while Boyd titles the track's NASCAR Nationwide Series race on behalf of Sam's Town casino.
"Recap reports are not the be-all, end-all in in getting a renewal, but they definitely help set the stage," said Camper.
Other properties have found similar success, albeit on a smaller scale. Dick's Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon credits recap reports with helping to renew its naming rights partner. Recaps also helped expand another relationship from $2,500 to $25,000.
"Recap reports have been incredibly valuable when negotiating renewals," said Patrice Matamoros, the marathon's executive director.
The documents also give properties another major benefit: The opportunity to highlight over-delivery.
"We have become good at documenting a partnership outside the guardrails of a current agreement. If a sponsor needs something, you can say 'hey guys, this is what we did for you.'"
Where possible, reports should be tailored to the marketing objectives and hot buttons for each sponsor.
"What is it that a partner is trying to get out of the program? If it's all about TV exposure, we won't delve into how many people were in the grandstand," said Camper.
In addition to media exposure and other traditional assets, properties should also include data on social media and other digital extensions. "Recaps on social media metrics like second-screen activity is helpful," said Pam Hollander, senior director of integrated marketing with Allstate Insurance Co.
In terms of delivery, properties should provide recaps within 30 days after an event to ensure the sponsorship is top of mind with sponsors.
Hollander points to late delivery as a pet peeve. "We want to see post-event reports as close to the actual event as possible so that we can start planning for the next event."
Roughly 75 percent of properties sponsored by Allstate provide post-event reports, she said.
Best Practices: Recap Reports:
Dedicate staff resources. Identify internal stakeholders who will be responsible for collecting data.
Make it an ongoing process. Properties should collect information before, during and after an event or season.
Customize for each partner. Recap reports should be tailored to the marketing objectives of each sponsor.
Keep reports succinct. Sponsors don't have time to wade through lengthy reports.
Consider the different audiences. Reports should include information relevant to CEOs, CFOs and other stakeholders that may not be familiar with the sponsorship.
Deliver in a timely fashion. Properties should deliver reports within two months after an event.
Consider mid-season updates. Year-round properties should consider quarterly and mid-season recaps.
Below, three trends in post-event reports:
Increased Frequency. A growing number of properties are increasing the frequency of recap reports to keep sponsors updated on the relationship.
The Professional Bull Riders provide reports halfway through the season to ensure sponsors have enough time to make any changes in the partnership, said Terry Bassett, PBR's executive vice president of sales and partnerships.
"Mid-season reports give sponsors enough time to make any corrections."
Other properties take a similar route. The MLS Chicago Fire last year began providing quarterly and biannual reports to complement year-end reports. The team also provides recaps after major activation programs such as sponsorship of a game.
"The reports provide information in a timely manner that sponsors can share with their key stakeholders," said Jessica Worley, the Fire's senior director of corporate partnerships.
Third-party Research. Continuing a trend seen over the past few years, a growing number of rightsholders are augmenting recap reports with third-party research.
That research ranges from the value of media exposure to audience research.
For example, the Dick's Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon shares audience research on sponsor recall and purchasing data.
The marathon tailors the data to each sponsor's objectives. For example, the organization conducted research to determine how its partnership with NuGo helped support the company's objectives of driving sales among runners. NuGo markets nutritional bars and other products.
The research paid off: 45 percent of runners recognized NuGo as a sponsor and purchased the company's products over the prior three months.
"It was rewarding to see sponsorship changing behavior and creating new consumers," said Matamoros.
New Technology. A growing number of properties are replacing print documents with electronic formats.
"In the old days, it used to be about asking the marketing guy to take a big three-ring binder to the CFO. Now we can put the document on a memory stick and show the document to them on a tablet computer," said Camper.
Properties also can use software form Sportsdigita, 3D Issue and other technology companies to compile post-event fulfillment reports.
(Source: IEG Sponsorship Blog, 04/15/13)
What's In It For You:
I just returned from the IEG Sponsorship Conference, and the subject of "Measurement" is top-of-mind for every sponsor brand and company. And while they are not all looking for the same kind of measurement (some want increased sales, others want brand equity, still others talked about increasing conversations), the willingness of properties to have the measurement conversation before the sale and to show justification via results for the sponsor's investment after the campaign was essential in every presentation and conversation. One tip: Don't wait until after the campaign to put together the re-cap. Start putting it together as you go along. Capture publicity and social marketing exchanges as they happen, create on-site video, get attendee quotes and sound bites, and then just wrap it all up and put it together at the end.
||Top 3 Mobile Strategies for Live Entertainment
Mobile devices can be used as powerful marketing tools that drive live event ticket sales, create engaging mobile moments and deepen brand awareness.
Here's three mobile strategies for live entertainment venues and tactics that have proven successful.
1. Drive sales and venue traffic by targeting nearby consumers.
The venue you're most likely to visit is the venue in your neighborhood, or in a city where you're traveling. To drive sales and venue traffic, it's essential to determine a consumer's location and direct them to the closest productions.
Mobile devices offer a number of opportunities for consumers to share their location in real-time, including location-based services like GPS and cell tower triangulation. Any "Big Brother" concerns can be curbed: U.S. wireless carriers require that subscribers explicitly opt-in to location-based mobile programs in addition to traditional SMS short code programs. A customer's location can also be determined through standard data, such as area code or ZIP code. While these are not perfect measures (as wireless customers tend to move across area codes, ZIP codes and state lines), a recent internal study found area codes to be 92% accurate.
To drive ticket sales for the Broadway blockbuster Spider-Man Turn Off the Dark, Situation Interactive, a New York-based entertainment marketing and interactive advertising agency, targeted both Big Apple visitors and locals. Tourists were invited to sign up for a text message on the show's website, including their travel dates, in an effort to convert casual web browsers into ticket buyers through their mobile devices. To cast a web upon locals, 400,000 pizza boxes were delivered in the tri-state area containing SMS sweepstakes advertisements. Winners received two free tickets, and non-winners received a discount, which generated sales.
2. Deepen brand engagement by creating in-venue mobile moments.
According to the Mobile Marketing Association, 91% of U.S. citizens have their mobile phones within reach at all times, so you can bet that your audience members have immediate access to theirs. This creates an opportunity in the minutes before a show begins where marketers can deepen audience engagement with the production, venue and brand.
Sweepstakes and contests are a proven way to acquire new subscribers and delight existing ones; that winning experience is only enhanced when it is conducted on a mobile device and prizes are nearly instant.
Engelstad Arena, a football and hockey sports complex, engages spectators through live text-to-vote programs where responses are broadcast in real time. Although results are often biased, fans enjoy voting for their favorite player or who will score next.
SHN, a theatrical entertainment company in San Francisco, uses SMS trivia sweepstakes to increase audience engagement. By answering a series of questions about the production, aided by hints in the program and the surrounding venue, subscribers can learn about the show and enter into prize drawings. Up to 15% of total audience participation is not uncommon, contributing to substantial buzz before the curtain goes up. A strong acquisition tool, this campaign has helped grow SHN's mobile database from 500 to over 20,000 in the past 18 months, with a monthly unsubscribe rate of just 5.39%.
3. Generate return visits by building a mobile database.
Another way to capitalize on existing purchase behavior, and begin to mold tomorrow's loyal customer, is to encourage first-time visitors to return. While venues certainly depend on first-time ticket buyers, season ticket holders and repeat customers represent a large chunk of the live entertainment clientele.
Building a mobile loyalty list can provide direct communication with the most loyal spectators. Due to incredibly high open rates, mobile is one of the strongest channels to engage subscribers and deliver time-sensitive information and offers.
One viable SMS acquisition tactic is to strengthen existing marketing efforts with text calls to action: print, direct mail, TV, radio, email and social. In-venue calls to action, sweepstakes and instant wins can also convert audience enthusiasm into an opportunity for direct contact. Your SMS program content will depend on your brand, whether you offer last-minute deep discounts to fill the house or announce mobile-exclusive pre-sales for the next big-ticket show.
Live entertainment is about a visual experience in real-time, and mobile devices share the same visual and immediate nature. The most profitable venues take advantage of this connection and use mobile to achieve three main objectives for live entertainment: Sell tickets, make the experience memorable, and keep people coming back. The bond between mobile and live entertainment will only continue to strengthen. As smartphone penetration rises, venues may consider embracing the mobile devices audience members bring along, rather than encouraging them to shut off.
(Source: Chief Marketer, 2013)
||Cause Marketing Opportunity: St. Jude Children’s Hospital Two-Day Community Event
In 1989, Randy Owen of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital called on country music stations to support Danny Thomas' dream of putting an end to childhood cancer.
Since then, country radio stations have boosted both awareness and support of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital across the U.S. Other formats soon joined in, representing markets large and small, and to date, radio has raised more than $500 million to help treat young cancer patients from all 50 states and around the world at no cost to their families.
For the first time, St. Jude is asking primarily small market outlets to air a two-day community event and share with listeners the hospital's message of hope.
"We are trying to recruit stations, all formats, outside of markets where we already have a partner station," said Leslie Hallford of the St. Jude Radio Development team. "All they have to do is call, and I will send them everything they need to conduct a quality, yet turnkey, event."
Participating stations will be asked to air St. Jude patient stories and appeals for listeners to get involved May 9-10.
"They keep their regular format, but still get the sales and programming support we provide all of our long-standing partner stations across the country," Hallford added.
Since opening in 1962, St. Jude has helped bring survival rates for leukemia and other forms of childhood cancer from less than 20% to better than 80% overall.
For more information on this powerful community event opportunity, stations can contact Hallford directly at (901) 578-2036, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
(Source: St. Jude Children's Research Hospital/ALDAC, 04/15/13)
Daily Sales Tip: Fill 'er Up
District managers for gasoline companies such as Citgo, Shell, BP, and Chevron are great contacts for Alternative Revenue programs.
Successful programs have included distribution locations, free inspection sites (child seats and boats), and consumer sweepstakes.
And with gas prices fluctuating (bet seemingly always going up in the end), gasoline companies are seeking opportunities to engage with their customers on a local community level.
Source: Brandeis C. Hall, BHall@rab.com, (972) 753-6786