Keep your eye on the ball

Date of publication: June 15, 1993

Author: Ken Parker


The growth of sponsorship as a means of communications is apparent to all. In the U.K., excluding money used to support sponsorship activity, our best estimate suggests the sports market alone to account for around £250 million in 1992 (Source: RSL Sportscan), having grown four-fold since 1982. This is approximately 4% of advertising revenue. The world market for total sponsorship is 1991 was estimated at $8,300 million (Source: 1SL) Nowadays market research has well-established techniques to consider all aspects of traditional communications media, especially advertising, from assisting in strategy development, pre-testing and post-testing. This paper discusses some of the techniques we have been developing to consider sponsorship communications media and how they have been applied across Europe. Over the past five years considerable experience in sponsorship research has been gained. Although it is still TRUE to report that the total sponsorship research market is small, this paper is based on our knowledge from over 90 group discussions conducted/co-ordinated across 9 countries 'U.K., France. Germany, Spain, Italy, Denmark, Australia. Brazil and Malaysia), with at least 4 groups in each of these countries. This qualitative experience is also backed by over 50 quantitative interviews on the subject. In particular the paper discusses the "Focused Sponsorship Simulation" technique developed by RSL. and the methods of briefing/debriefing overseas agencies to best effect.

Ken Parker


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