Event Sponsorship, Cause Sponsorship19th February 2021
Event Sponsorship is a way of advertising your brand by “sponsoring” or supporting an event financially in exchange for brand exposure to highly engaged attendees.
- It’s personal.
Nowadays, a growing number of companies are reallocating their advertising budget towards event sponsorship to connect with prospects and customers in a more personal way.
- It’s cost-efficient.
For a relatively minor financial outlay, the right event partnerships have great potential for customer reach, influence and engagement which means more bang for your buck compared to traditional forms of advertising.
- It’s seamless.
The right event partnership can seamlessly integrate your brand message into the event’s theme and content. Your message is delivered in a harmonious way, unlike ads that are sometimes annoying and intrusive.
- Brand Interaction
Aside from the visibility and awareness, events are an opportunity for brands to directly interact with prospects or current customers. It lets you connect with your audience in a meaningful way.
- Attendee Data
The database of highly qualified prospects from the attendee list is worth its weight in gold. Events are a terrific platform for advancing your brand message and staying connected with your fresh targets.
- Media Exposure
High-profile events featuring VIP attendees and speakers get ample media coverage. Sponsoring such events can give your brand free media exposure.
- Direct Engagement
Small events are not to be dismissed. As a sponsor, your brand will likely get better quality engagements with a niche group of prospects.
- Brand prestige
Industry influencers, top executives, VIPs attending or speaking at events have interests that may align with your business. Sponsoring the right events will open doors for lucrative opportunities and lend some level of brand prestige by association.
Cause sponsorship is an interesting and accessible tool for companies to get involved in corporate social responsibility without having to create a platform on their own and by partnering with experts on specific issues as well as providing support for a long-term platform versus a PR stunt.
Cause marketing builds an extra level of brand loyalty by giving customers an extra reason to support your business. When you communicate to customers about the ways that your business contributes to the common good, you create a shared sense of purpose while branding your company as a conscious, forward-thinking enterprise. Sponsorship is a form of cause marketing that involves donating to an event or organization and receiving public recognition for your contribution, linking your business name to the name of the cause.
A business that launches a cause marketing campaign has some degree of control over the timing of the promotion. For example, a food business could market a plan to switch to organic ingredients to coincide with Earth Day. This business can promote its involvement with this cause as frequently and as widely as it chooses. In contrast, a business that sponsors an event or an enterprise such as a team has less control over the promotional efforts that link its name with its cause, because these acknowledgements usually originate with the organization rather than with the donating business.
According to the Cause Marketing Forum, 47 percent of consumers in 2012 purchased a product at least once a month because its brand was aligned with a worthwhile cause. While cause marketing efforts such as commercials that raise awareness about a company’s environmental practices are aimed at encouraging customers to buy products right away, sponsorships may be geared more toward building long-term awareness of a company’s brand. Both approaches ultimately help to increase sales, but the effect of sponsorship brand-building is harder to measure.
When your business launches a cause marketing campaign, you align yourself with an idea that is consistent with your overall mission. For example, a company that sells outdoor gear might get involved in a campaign to preserve wilderness areas. When you include sponsorship as an element in your cause marketing campaign, you align your business with a specific organization that shares your goals. Sponsorship has a more limited scope than general cause marketing, because it involves targeted contributions, usually earmarked for specific funds or happenings.
Unless your company is sponsoring a major global event such as the Olympics, sponsorship will usually reach a more limited audience than a general cause marketing campaign. For example, raising money to help children in need may appeal to anyone who cares about needy children, while corporate sponsorship of an elementary school baseball team will speak directly to parents at that particular elementary school. However, these elementary school parents will be particularly invested in the business that supports them specifically.
Cause marketing is marketing done by a for-profit business that seeks to both increase profits and to better society in accordance with corporate social responsibility, such as by including activist messages in advertising.
A similar phrase, cause-related marketing, usually refers to a subset of cause marketing that involves the cooperative efforts of a for-profit business and a non-profit organization for mutual benefit. A high-profile form of cause-related marketing occurs at checkout counters when customers are asked to support a cause with a charitable donation. Cause marketing differs from corporate giving (philanthropy), as the latter generally involves a specific donation that is tax-deductible, while because marketing is a promotional campaign not necessarily based on a donation.
Cause marketing can take on many forms, including:
- Transactional Campaigns: A corporate donation triggered by a consumer action (e.g. sharing a message social media, making a purchase, etc.) and Non-Transactional Campaigns: A corporate donation to a cause such as in cause sponsorship is not contingent on an explicit action of the consumer.
- Point of Sale Campaigns: A donation solicited by a company at the point of sale but made by the consumer (e.g. consumers are asked to round up their purchase or donate a dollar when they check out online or in-stores)
- Message-Focused Campaigns: Business resources are used to share a cause-focused message. For example, a campaign that encourages behavior change (e.g. don’t text and drive), drives awareness about an important cause (e.g. talking with elderly parents about driving) or encourages consumer action (e.g. signing a petition to save whales from captivity).
- Portion of Purchase: Businesses donate a portion of their sales to a nonprofit or cause.
- Pin Ups: Primarily for in-house use. Customers will donate and fill their name on paper icon, which will then be hung up in the store.
- Buy One Give One: Businesses will donate a product with comparable value to a designated product based on each sale of that product.
- Volunteerism: Rather than asking for a donation, businesses will ask if customers will volunteer their time to a certain organization.
- Digital Engagement: Businesses create a “digital experience” using social media and software engineers to spread awareness and raise funds for a cause or nonprofit.