IEG is the world’s largest gathering of sponsorship professionals and is currently taking place in the City of Chicago.
Sarah O’Connor, Head of Sport at Wilson Hartnell has travelled west to attend and is sending back a daily report from the frontline looking at the key themes to emerge from the multiple sessions taking place.
Here are today’s nuggets from the Windy City
Sponsorship offers opportunities in times of uncertainty
Sponsorship remains the fastest growing marketing tool in the US. As a brand builder and a key driver of both awareness and affinity, Jim Andrews, IEG, outlined how sponsorship platforms can be an anchor for brands in a time of significant societal uncertainty.
Doing Good is now an economic conversation
Be it Wimbledon detailing how one of their key objectives is to inspire the next generation of tennis fans or Absolut thinking transformational as opposed to transactional in marketing terms contributing to social good is the new must do for brands. With millennials enjoying a spending power of some $2.5 trillion and with 95% of them saying they would switch of a good cause contributing to social good is fast becoming an economic necessity never mind a nice to do.
No longer just the Millennials
The conversation in Chicago has focused as much on Gen Z as the Millennials and with 85% of Gen Z believing brand not should but have an obligation to affect social change it is easy to see why cause related sponsorship is on the rise!
B2B sponsorships are not always what they appear
Dow Chemicals outlined how they had anticipated originally that their sponsorship of the Olympic Games would increase business opportunities for them from the infrastructure demands placed on host cities, Yet it has been the opening of doors with other sports sponsors that has in fact presented the biggest opportunity be it launching new products or collaborating on not for profit projects with other brands that has created the majority of the new business opportunities.
Find your white space & stick to it!
Speaker of the day was no doubt Aldef digital’s (and amongst many other things reality TV star) Russell Simmons. His advice not just on sponsorship but for life was to find your white space and stick to it. His digital agency focuses on translating hip hop culture into digital content for brands and whilst serving a diverse audience he remains committed to staying in that lane. Russell’s other tip, used to explain the longevity of his success, was to remain open to listening and evolving.
Fact of the day: FC Bayern Music produce 4 hours of content for digital every single day.
Later today Brian Keating and Mark Brennan from AIB will become the first Irish brand marketers to present their story on the main stage at IEG talking about #TheToughest campaign.