Selling yourself short: Why rights holders need to re-assess their sponsorship proposals

When Henry Ford gave the world its first commonly available car in the Ford Model T, he famously stated: “Any customer can have a car painted any colour that he wants, so long as it is black”.

While the number of colour options for cars has come along way since 1909 (painted flames, anyone?), it seems many rights holders are still taking the Ford approach to their sponsorship assets and proposals.

A critically important part of any relationship is listening to, and understanding the needs of your other half, and building a successful and profitable commercial partnership is no different.

An all-too-common problem with 95% of sponsorship proposals in market today, is the total focus on the rights holder and their assets.

The proposals reel off things like the number of Facebook fans they have, what their Repucom valuation was for last season, and then finishes with an off the shelf package of assets and price tag.

One important question remains - What about the brand?

This cookie-cutter approach fails consider the needs of the brand, and restricts partnerships to out of the box packages, rather than bespoke relationships that provide benefit to all parties – including fans and consumers.

The best rights holders in market have a very different methodology. They recognise the importance of traditional metrics, but build the proposition from the ground up, considering how they can help solve a sponsor’s business and marketing objectives.

In upcoming blogs we'll explore how these proposals are created and the critical thinking that is required. For the time being, if you come across any sponsorship proposals with 'Your Brand Here' or your business logo cut and paste onto set areas within each page, run!

In the meantime, we’d love to hear about your great or woeful experiences with rights holders!