Measuring What Matters in Sponsorship Research
While it’s great to attend a conference and hear from all the experts from within your field, it can be even more useful to hear from experts who work in other fields. At The Art of Placemaking conference we invited Jed Pearsall, founder and president of Performance Research, a global leader in marketing and sponsorship research for Fortune 50 brands, to share his experiences in working with companies that sponsor the Arts. Performance Research’s mission is to help clients capture and measure the value of sponsorship and experiential marketing and reveal the essential truth about the impact.
There was lots of great information in this session. Here’s the continuum of sponsorship research that increases in importance as you move along it from left to right.
Jed cited David D’Alessandro, CEO, John Hancock Insurance, and author of Brand Warfare, as being particularly applicable for placemakers:
“Arts & cultural sponsorships have two enormous advantages. First, they represent one of the last kinds of sponsorships where consumers give you credit for just showing up…Secondly, they allow you to be distinctive and win attention by doing something unexpected.”
Many audience members expressed surprise when Jed advised that in all their years of conducting sponsorship research on arts properties, visitors have never expressed concerns to Performance Research about over-commercialization despite this being the biggest fear of art organizations and a hurdle in keeping many from entering into valuable partnerships with corporations. Consumers understand and appreciate that many events and exhibitions would not take place without corporate sponsorship.
Jed left us with five things to think about:
- Making an impression ≠ counting an impression.
- No passion = no value.
- Experience overrides visibility – it’s what people do, not what they see that counts.
- ROI (return on investment) and ROO (objectives) should include ROE (experience) and ROR (relationship)
- Measurement builds programs, it does not tear them down. (“don’t be afraid of the research or measurement, be afraid of failing without it.”)
Measuring What Matters: Sponsorship Research for the Placemaking World is a must watch for any arts leaders who manage or are thinking about sponsorships.
Also visit the conference video page for Jed Pearsall’s bio, Performance Research info and the Slideshare of his presentation.
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