sponsorship measurement

When I worked for a sponsorship property, our sponsors inevitably called in early September with the panicked measurement question. “Our CEO wants to know how our sponsorship did this season, and I need as much data as you have to support us.” This request often sets off a mad scramble for data in the office.

If I knew then what I know now, I would have managed our sponsors much differently. I recommend a four-step process to avoid panicked phone calls or emails.

1. Host a “Sponsorship Measurement Setting Meeting”

Early in the sponsorship relationship, the property should host a “Sponsorship Measurement Setting Meeting” where everyone agrees on measuring success. This type of agreement ensures that happiness occurs in the end.

2. Decide on a combination of sponsorship measurements

Each sponsor brings different goals to the sponsorship depending on its business and marketing objectives. Some sponsors desire increased brand awareness, while others what to generate leads for product sales. A sponsor may measure its financial return on investment from the sponsorship; or, it may track its return of objectives, like increasing brand consideration.

We’ve assembled the most popular measures in this infographic. Our infographic is based on the 2018 Association of National Advertisers and Marketing Accountability Standards Board survey, looking at the measures that sponsors lean on the most. It can be found here. Use this information to customize your unique combination of measurements.

3. In status meetings, review progress to date for your sponsorship measurments

Reviewing your measures’ progress at regular sponsorship status meetings will avoid panic when the CEO’s office calls. You’ll also have results at your fingertips.

I appreciate the status meeting process because it allows the sponsorship team to adjust tactics if the sponsorship is NOT yielding anticipated results. This is the time to course-correct. By the end of the sponsorship, there is no ability to recover from poor performance.

4. Review results in a summary

Many sponsors have an “after-event” sponsorship summary. This summary usually yields positive results when the measurement process is managed well. I prefer these summaries to the nail-biting meetings when the sponsorship team is on the hot seat explaining poor results.

Final Thoughts

A great sponsorship measurement process supports a sponsor’s ability to evaluate their partnership and assign a monetary value to it.

Managing the measurement process also helps avoid the September panic. Instead, when your CEO calls, you can impress them with excellent sponsorship outcomes.

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