While only four years old, New York City’s Governors Ball is quickly making its presence felt on the music festival scene.

Since its launch in 2011 as a one-day event on Governors Island in New York City, Governors Ball has more than doubled in size and attendance each year. The festival in 2013 drew more than 135,000 fans across three days.

The event’s sponsorship portfolio has mirrored that growth. New sponsors for 2014 include The Gap, Inc., Citibank, PayPal, Tito’s Handmade Vodka, and Amazon Beverages, a functional water brand.   

Below, IEG SR highlights two recent developments at the festival.

Takes sponsorship sales in-house
Looking to broaden the scope of its services, festival producer Founders Entertainment last year created a dedicated sponsorship department.  

Founders bolstered the initiative in June 2013 with the hiring of Alex Joffe as senior director of corporate partnerships.

The expanded offering represents a natural progression for the growing company, said Joffe, noting that C3 Presents, Live Nation, Superfly and other major event producers all have in-house sponsorship sales and development teams.

“The branding and sales team increases the value and scope of what we can deliver clients.”  

In addition to the festival, Founders now sells and creates music-centric marketing programs for other clients throughout the year. For example, the team last fall produced a16-date morning pop-up program for Starbucks VIA instant coffee.

“We didn’t have the resources to pursue those kinds of opportunities before,” said Joffe.

Founders continues to work with outside sales agencies, he added.

Places more focus on content partnerships
Governors Ball is placing more focus on content partnerships with media and other companies that can help extend the festival’s reach.

For example, the festival has inked a partnership with IMG, the producer of M-B Fashion Week in New York.

Fashion week will use the tie to build its presence in the music scene. The event will leverage the tie with an on-site fashion correspondent who will share photos and other content via social media.

“A photo of the Governors Ball on the Fashion Week Instagram handle is tremendous exposure for us,” said Joffe.

The partnership may expand beyond the music fest: Founders is speaking with IMG about creating after-party events around M-B Fashion Week.

Governors Ball also has a partnership with The Fader, around which the festival provides access to content in exchange for promotional support.