How to ensure brand sponsorship resonates with a target audience

Bo MattssonSponsorship is a useful channel for brands with large marketing budgets to raise awareness of their products and services among the public. There is a plethora of different sponsorship opportunities available, ranging from securing a celebrity ambassador to front a product to headline sponsorship of a sporting event or music festival. However, in order to guarantee that any brand affiliation is successful, it is worthwhile brands undertaking consumer research in advance, to identify whether that individual or event will resonate positively with its target audience.

Celebrity sponsorship in particular can be fraught with pitfalls due to the fickle nature of popularity amongst consumers. In the UK, for example, ex-pop star Kerry Katona was recently dropped from her role promoting payday loans service Cash Lady due to her being declared bankrupt.

While the brand could not have foreseen this event, their chosen ambassador may have had a negative impact on the way it is viewed by the public.

By obtaining market insight, before, and during a campaign, a brand manager or marketer can ascertain who or what is going to appeal to consumers and what types of promotion will resonate.

By engaging a survey panel representative of a specific key target audience, marketers can establish whether their chosen ambassador, event or campaign will lead to a positive improvement on the bottom line.

For example, a sports shoe company targeting women could engage with the latest tennis star or basketball player, but by checking their appeal with this demographic they can be sure they are making the right choice.

Or a mobile phone company could choose to sponsor a number of outdoor music festivals, but the popularity of these events must chime with their audience. While many marketers may feel they have their finger on the pulse, in the fast-evolving entertainment sector, lifestyle choices can vary frequently, so it is important to poll the right individuals regularly to stay on top of the trends.

Sponsorship can be a significant investment for brands, whether it is a local DIY store backing the town’s junior football club, a giant soft drink manufacture sponsoring a global sporting event or a technology company purchasing the naming rights for a music festival.

With marketing budgets continually squeezed in unstable economic times, it is important that this outlay is beneficial and will demonstrate clear and discernible ROI.

Obtaining market insight does not have to be a complicated and time consuming process and nowadays there are many tools for deploying surveys online to a select and specific demographic of individuals.

By asking key customers what events they enjoy, which celebrities they respect and how they spend their free time, a brand can be satisfied that any sponsorship campaign is meaningful and valuable.

Author Bio

Bo MattssonBo Mattsson, is the chief executive of Cint, a global provider of technology for obtaining market insight. Bo founded Cint in 1998 when he decided to apply his experience of trading online to the market research industry.

He then took over as CEO in 2003 to revamp the core consumer research tools into an exchange-based offering for respondent access.

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