Interesting research from the U.K. commissioned by London agency Target Media: Of 2,000 music festival attendees surveyed, 41 percent had positive feelings toward brands that sponsored such events.
Thirty-nine percent said sponsor ads fit better with the festival experience than ads elsewhere, while only 19 percent said they were annoyed by sponsor ID at festivals. Additionally, 75 percent of attendees said they could recall beer, wine or spirits sponsors at music festivals, with 77 percent believing such adult beverages “work best” as festival sponsors.
British and European sponsors typically do a very good job at activating their presence at music festivals to ensure their brands play a role in enhancing the attendees’ experience, which I am willing to bet plays a large role in the positive feedback to this survey.
This post won’t be tagged under “deep insights,” but just an observation about a noteworthy sponsorship that could be replicated by other properties.
This coming weekend’s Ford Ironman Louisville event features sponsorship from the city-run Louisville Water Co. Given its role as the local water utility, LWC has come up with a unique way to supply the hundreds of gallons of water needed by the triathletes that eliminates the need for thousands of eco-unfriendly plastic bottles. The company will tap into its existing water lines and one mobile water trunk and provide 100-plus volunteers at nine stations with hoses to fill 125,000 cups of water.
LWC plans to use this model for other local events to which it currently supplies bottled tap water.
For properties that have not had success securing an official water sponsor, or for those seeking a sustainable alternative to bottled water, tapping into your local water utility may be a good way to go.
It will be interesting to see what Sprint Nextel does once it completes its just-announced acquisition of Virgin Mobile USA. The purchase gives the company two prepaid wireless brands: Virgin Mobile and Boost Mobile, which it already owned.
Both brands have been active and inventive sponsors (IEG Sponsorship Report subscribers can read our article on the prepaid category here, so I hope that combining forces will bring more spending, additional innovative programs and continued creative excellence in activation. But of course there are no guarantees.
Virgin Mobile’s conversion of its ticketed Virgin Mobile Festival to the free Virgin Mobile FreeFest, which was announced last month, was a brilliant stroke. It recognizes the impact of the recession on consumers and also rewarded Virgin Mobile customers by giving them first shot at the free ducats for the August 30 music event.
The current issue of IEG Sponsorship Report (available to subscribers here) has an article on Fox Broadcasting signing sponsorship of five fall beer festivals on behalf of the 20th anniversary of The Simpsons.
Apart from being a 40-something fan of the show who was somewhat surprised to find out that The Simpsons needed to market itself to younger viewers (not to mention irked that this reminded me I was no longer one myself), I couldn’t help thinking of the irony of a show whose writers have brilliantly skewered our beloved medium becoming a sponsor itself.
For years, I have found myself guffawing at The Simpsons’ send-ups of stadium naming rights, rock concert sponsorships, cause partnerships, etc., before the “sponsorship-industry-spokesperson” part of my brain would kick in and I would furtively glance around my living room to make sure none of my colleagues/industry friends was lurking behind a chair with an accusatory “aha” waiting to spring from their lips.