Sold on Sponsorships?

Posted by on Aug 11, 2011 in ComLead, Integrated Marketing Communication, Managing Not-For-Profit Organizations

The prevalence of corporate sponsorships are often reasoned as being the a corporation’s way of giving back. This summer in Buffalo, I couldn’t help but notice all of the great summer festivities brought to you in part by large companies working with non-profit organizations. The one Buffalo company that has been rocking community event sponsorship? M&T.

Amidst this turbulent economy, it is refreshing to have free events to attend. Seeing the logo of M&T at three different events, it got me to thinking about how much money they contribute to Buffalo festivities. Now this does seem like an unrelenting plug for Manufacturer’s and Trust, but they are Buffalo born and bred too, so does that make it better?

This summer I have been fortunate enough to attend the Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society’s Party on the Portico, the 2011 Elmwood Village Picnic in the Parkway Summer Concert Series, and last but not least a couple lovely evenings attending Shakespeare in the Park. When discussing sponsorships in the non profit classes in the Communication and Leadership curriculum, we concluded that they are created in order to generate buzz for the sponsor, but also help to offset costs for executing great events like ones constantly happening throughout Buffalo.

Clearly sponsors play an important role in helping non profits to fulfill their mission within the community, but it would be interesting to know if it helps to generate revenue for the company. Although not sure about numbers, I am sure that some of the people attending the events begin to generate  a positive perception about the companies involved.

According to Menon and Kahn, 2001, postive perception of a brand occurs when the cause they are supporting is congruent to the company and if the sponsorship is applicable to the daily life of the consumer. Meaning, if it seems justifiable that the company would support the cause, then people are more apt to generate a positive perception of the company’s corporate responsibility. Also, if the concert, gala, or trip to the Amazon is personally relevant to you as an individual, then a¬† positive perception of the organization is more likely to be garnered.

In the experience that I have with concert attendance, I can’t say that I have paid much attention to sponsorships until now. Do any stick out in your mind as particularly relevant?

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