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Aon Takes Man U Sponsorship to the Field

By Diane Knoepke Oct 21, 2009

Imagine my surprise when, sitting in the salon waiting room, a blog post appeared. Someone before me had left behind Q, Aon’s employee magazine (Q3 2009 edition). The bright cover depicts children playing soccer and the headline "UNITED IN 2010: AON AND MANCHESTER UNITED" along with a call-out saying there is a team poster inside.

Above and beyond that poster is a case for a sponsorship the likes of which we rarely see. While Aon's core business is not sponsorship or even marketing (it's risk management and human capital consulting), they give their employees solid background on the reasons for the partnership, including business objectives, value drivers and ROI case studies. Particularly impressive is an interview with Charlie Armstrong, senior director, advertising & global branding for AIG, to "find out how the current sponsor leveraged its opportunity to build brand and grow AIG's business."

Other features include an article discussing how Man U fits into Aon's vision of being the leading global firm alongside a discussion of its corporate citizenship.

Further answering the question "Why Manchester United?" are quotes from executives across the business. It goes on to describe several activation elements including client hospitality via a summer Asian Tour, a Follow the Football employee recognition program, and an Aon Skills & Drills Tour for children of clients and prospects to receive coaching from Man U coaching staff in 15 U.S. cities (where Aon offices exceeded revenue benchmarks).

We can all take a page from Q in thinking about how to inform and involve our colleagues in a partnership campaign.

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Diane Knoepke

About the Author

Diane is managing director, client leadership for IEG Consulting, where she supports the team’s growth and innovation. Throughout her career, she has advised more than 50 property and brand clients on marketing and social value creation, sales, measurement and strategy. She delights in helping people change organizations more effectively. Follow Diane on Twitter!

 

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David Prosperi 10/30/2009 11:57 AM
As part of our desire to build excitement and momentum around our agreement with Manchester United, we are creating initiatives designed to increase awareness and support from our global Aon colleagues, such as the aforementioned article in our employee magazine. We also have launched a "Follow the Football" program where signed soccer balls are traveling to Aon offices around the world. Selected colleagues in each office are asked to sign the ball and contribute a statement for our intranet site on why they believe the Manchester United agreement will strengthen Aon's global brand. We intend to present our friends at Manchester United with the signed balls next year when our agreement launches. Please check out www.aon.com/united2010/ for more information on why Aon partnered with the most powerful sport brand in the world.