XTC Sponsorship Series Presents: Meltwater As Sponsor For New Data & Analtyics Vertical 10th August, 2017

Extreme Tech Challenge (XTC) 2018 is excited to announce the addition of a data & analytics vertical for this year’s competition, which will focus on highlighting tomorrow’s most promising data science companies. The new vertical will be sponsored by Meltwater, a global leader in media intelligence. Meltwater’s Outside Insight technology uses advanced AI and data science to help more than 25,000 clients leverage valuable external data to make more informed business decisions. Meltwater was founded in Norway in 2001 by CEO Jorn Lyseggen, who bootstrapped the company with $15,000. Today it has more than 1,500 employees and 55 offices globally.

On their involvement in XTC 2018, Jorn Lyseggen, Meltwater Founder & CEO, said: “Meltwater has long been dedicated to supporting the next generation of tech startups through our data science hub, Shack15, in London and our non-profit, MEST, in Africa. I’m thrilled to be part of this year’s XTC and to support the next big innovators.”

Lyseggen will be the official judge for the Meltwater data & analytics prize. The winner of this vertical will receive 2 seats at a hot desk in one of Meltwater’s global Shack15 data science hub locations (including London, SF and Shanghai) for 3 months. Shack15 was launched in London in 2016 as a co-working and events space specifically focused on data science startups, as part of Meltwater’s commitment to fostering tech startup communities around the world.

Commenting on the partnership, XTC COO, Sabine Schindlbauer said: “We are delighted to welcome Meltwater as the official Data & Analytics Vertical sponsor. Their leading technology and media intelligence showcases exactly what our competition stands for, and their fantastic prize for the winner of the vertical will continue to help data-focused startups grow.”

Deal Brokered by Slingshot Sponsorship.

About Meltwater

Meltwater helps companies make better, more informed decisions based on insights from the outside. More than 25,000 companies use the Meltwater media intelligence platform to stay on top of billions of online conversations, extract relevant insights, and use them to strategically manage their brand and stay ahead of their competition. With over 55 offices on six continents, Meltwater is dedicated to personal, global service built on local expertise. Meltwater also operates the Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST), a nonprofit organization devoted to nurturing future generations of entrepreneurs.For more information, follow Meltwater on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, or visit meltwater.com.

The Big Data Divide 26th March, 2013

Data – the four letter word that has been uttered over and over again in recent years.  Mentioning the word data has the ability to cast confusion, spread fear and ignite inspiration throughout brands and agencies alike, all in two syllables.  Indeed, the influx of data has left marketers confused at the best of times, yet slowly but surely more and more are coming to realise its true potential. Yet despite the many upsides to the use of data, a shadow has been cast over it, flagging debate within the industry over its ‘Orwellian’ nature and its misuse by brands. Indeed, there is no denying that Big Data has become a hotbed of conversation, and in many instances has divided opinion.  But there is one thing that everyone is able to agree upon, the era of Big Data is here.

The prominence of Big Data in our ever more interconnected world is something that retailers and marketers are unable to continue to ignore.   The internet has become a single space through which hundreds of millions of individuals are able to congregate and where their every action is recorded.  The development of social media within this has added another level to this experience.  Communication channels such as Twitter and Facebook allow the consumer to like, share and engage with brands and products on a personal level like never before.

Indeed Big Data and social CRM provide brands and agencies with bountiful information about the consumer allowing them to direct campaigns, communicate messages and market new products to consumers that really want to engage with them.  In many cases, the use of data and CRM has allowed brands that have the ability to react fast and use Big Data intelligently to create some truly creative content.  Take for example, Samsung and their ‘The Next Big Thing is Already Here’ campaign which saw the brand use real time social listening software.  This enabled Samsung to track consumer reaction to the unveiling of the iPhone 5 as it happened which led them to create a campaign based upon the comments it was seeing.  The campaign featured adverts mocking Apple customers queuing outside the iStore – an advert that was viewed more than 70 million times online.

However, the use of data sets such as these has led to a considerable debate within the industry.  Speaking at Advertising Week Europe this month, Sir John Hegarty, founder of BBH warned brands over their reliance upon collecting data and basing campaigns around it.  Hegarty explains that brand use of personal behaviour data in some instances, verges on the inappropriate.  Taking example from tools such as Nike Fuelband, a devise which tracks and stores individuals running patterns which Nike in turn uses, Hegerty continues, could be viewed as taking away from our personal freedom and too much of an intrusion into our daily lives.

Indeed, it is not only the data itself that has been criticised, but the means through which brands are choosing to use this data.  Speaking at the DataIQ Conference, Jon Cano-Lopez expressed that if brands choose to use Big Data, they must be able to decipher what is useful, what is accurate and most importantly what is acceptable.  Furthermore, the means through which brands choose to transfer this data and communicate it back to the consumer is also critical. It may also be said that brands that have an abundance of data sets lose site of their overall brand picture whilst trying too hard to react to the data at hand and predict behavioural patterns.

It is becoming ever more apparent that Big Data is playing a critical role in marketing and sponsorship industries alike.  Despite the aforementioned pit falls, the benefits that can be gained through the correct use of data are endless.  Big Data allows marketers to identify, measure and manage what is impacting their brand in a way that has never been previously been possible.  However, no matter how much data is available, the overwhelming factor resides upon how a brand chooses to use and communicate it.

Top 10 Sales Tips for Sponsorship Rights Holders 12th December, 2011

With an increasing number of platforms available for corporate partnership, the selection process for brands is becoming more complex, with a wide range of factors influencing the allocation of marketing budgets. Therefore when approaching potential partners, it is important for rights holders to ensure that each of the following factors is taken into account:

1.  Price

The fees asked by the rights holder play a key role in the decision-making process for a sponsor to come on board with a property. The price of association is often the first aspect of a proposal to be looked at and it is therefore imperative that rights owners understand how to value their sponsorship assets correctly.

2.  Timing

Depending on the company and industry, budgeting can take place at different times of the year. However, as a rights holder, the important thing is to understand the general time of year that marketing budgets will be allocated by your prospects in order not to miss the boat.

Depending on the size of the investment relative to the prospective sponsor, opportunities with lower fees may be handled on a tactical basis. However generally, companies will be much less open to new partnerships once budgets have been set and it is therefore crucial to get in there early.

Typically planning periods are September/October and March/April.

3.  Prospects

It is important that rights holders understand the key demographic of their property’s audience as misunderstanding this can lead to approaching an inappropriate market and wasting valuable time.

Once understanding the relevant brands to approach, the next step is to understand their behavioural tendencies in terms of their general sponsorship partnerships and activations and how they have utilised these relationships in the past. This will highlight which assets are relevant to each sponsorship category and in turn allow for a more tailored approach.

4.  Audience Resonance

Are the prospect’s consumers interested in the sponsorship? And furthermore, will the sponsorship audience be interested in the prospect’s products and services? A sponsor will always have their target audience in mind when activating a sponsorship and therefore you as a rights holder must also adopt the same thought process, ensuring that the needs and wants of your prospect’s consumer base align with the benefits of your property.

5.  Attendance

In the case of an event-based platform, the attendance is always of high priority to prospective sponsors. Whether the focus is on engaging with a specific audience or allowing for key networking opportunities, the attendance must present the prospect of new business opportunities.

A common error in the sales approach of a rights holder is approaching all companies within their property’s industry rather than taking the time to break down it down by relevance. By evaluating the industry and which areas will be most relevant, sales teams can prioritise their approach, generally receiving more positive feedback and in turn taking less time to close new partnerships.

6.  Reflection of Company Values

The more a company can see of itself in a property, the more willing they will be to forge a partnership as a key aspect of a sponsorship is to emphasise brand values. This again relates to audience resonance and the tailoring of a sales approach as different selling points will appeal to different brands depending on their relative markets.

7.  Comparison of New Business Figures with Previous Sponsorships

Producing financial, attendance, or media value figures are one of the most effective ways in which to sell a property as they are cold hard facts that cannot be easily manipulated. Tangible figures and facts provide a clear indication of such highly influencing factors as ROI, media coverage, attendance and give the prospect an immediate understanding of the tangible benefits they would receive from their investment.

8.  Prioritisation of Company Goals

Each sponsorship platform caters to different aims and objectives of sponsors, this being a huge factor in the prospect’s decision making process. What is the largest benefit of sponsoring your property? There may be more than one but at least one of them should align with the core objective of the brand.

9.  Cross Marketing Opportunities

Sponsorship platforms can attract brands from different industries with similar audiences.  These rare opportunities can create cross marketing benefits that add substantial value to a sponsorship. This tends to occur with Media Sponsor rights and we’d highly recommend considering bringing on board something like this to strengthen your event or program.

10.  Data Provision

Another advantage of sponsorship is the opportunity to carry out research amongst a captive sample of a brand’s target audience. If you are able to offer behavioural data to your sponsor helping them streamline their products and services, this brings a whole new level of value to the sponsorship – gaining important exposure whilst receiving precious qualitative feedback.

By putting in the time and research to evaluate each of the above factors before pitching to prospective sponsors, rights holders are able to carry out a truly time and cost effective sales approach. This will in turn allow for a more streamlined prospect list, resulting in fewer knock-backs and improved close-ratios.

Furthermore, adopting a more methodical approach will significantly increase sales staff motivation, driving the property forward in terms of investment and the opportunities for expansion that come with it.