Measuring Sponsorships

IEG, publishers of, are webcasting a seminar on measuring sponsorships on Thursday, April 19.  I’ve seen bits and pieces of this material before.  Some interesting stuff, if memory serves.  

If you should partake, and if it’s included, keep a keen eye out for ‘Signal Detection Analysis’ borrowed from the field of psychology.  Essentially the technique asks the audience (or attendees) to explicitly, and often in an unaided manner, identify both sponsors and non-sponsors in cases (think logo soup situations like NASCAR) where there are many.  Can they correctly identify sponsors and non-sponsors at least 50% of the time?  Who’s a clear winner?  Who are the top performers in a cluttered field?  Who’s lost in the clutter?  Who are the poor performers?  All this is plotted on a matrix.   

Be somewhat wary, however, of methodologies such as automated logo (on screen for TV) image identification technology as a sole means of sponsorship measurement as, in my view, it’s the sponsorship equivalent of advertising equivalency.         

The Institute for PR also provides some thinking on measuring sponsorships. 

In all cases, not rocket science and no single, catch-all (nor should there be) silver bullet solution.  Rather, it involves applying (and triangulating, really) multiple long pre-existing research methods; some qualitative, some quantitative. 


2 responses to “Measuring Sponsorships

  1. Alan – do you think social media has had any impact on sponsorship?

  2. Dave,

    Yes, no and maybe too early to tell (if you could measure it at all). How’s that for clarity? 🙂

    Well, I think that in some ways social media and sponsorships are alike in that they are (can be) both about an organization engaging in a relationship with its audience; they are both touch points. Where a blog does that via on-line dialogue (as opposed to the traditional corproate monologue) ideally in a transparent, constructive, collegial, collaborative nature; a sponsorship dcan do that experientially.

    Both are particularly important given that n-genner audiences are, in my view, increasingly marketing savvy, leary and wary. I think Neville Hobson calls this the teflon generation. So, marketers and communicators need to find ways to actively engage, excite and inform their audiences and even have them play a role in shaping the experience (not just consumers or producers but prosumers…hat tip to Don Tapscott author of Wikinomics).

    I should point out that I realize that blogs are much, much more than about organizations communicating with audiences.

    I suppose one could also argue that, perhaps, down the road as corporate blogs become more ubiquitous, and as these blogs become an open, constructive and collaborative, two-way symmetric dailogue ‘tween corporation and prosumer, then maybe we won’t see as much need for sponsorships. Though I think there will always be a coroporate need to and a prosumer willigness to take part in the off-line tactile.

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