Slingshot Sponsorship’s Mark Mylam Highly Commended for Barrie Gill Award for Most Promising Young Executive at Hollis Sponsorship Awards 2013 27th March, 2013

Slingshot’s very own Mark Mylam was Highly Commended last night for the Barrie Gill Award for Most Promising Young Executive at Hollis Sponsorship Awards which were held at the Marriott Hotel in London.

Having only been in the sponsorship industry for two years, Mark’s High Commendation reflects how far he has come in such ashort period of time.  The Barrie Gill Awards for Most Promising Young Executive recognsises young executives working within agencies, client companies or rights-owners who are making a significant impact within their organisation or sector.  The awards seek to honour excellence, recognise effectiveness of campaigns, and in Mark’s case, his High Commendation is testament to his hard work, creativity and driving energy that he has contributed to Slingshot.

Mark stated ‘I am delighted with the High Commendation I received for the Barrie Gill Award.  The Award itself celebrates emerging talent within sponsorship and I am honoured to be recognised as a part of the new generation breaking through.’

Mark’s achievement is not only reflected through his High Commendation but in the work he has done whilst at Slingshot.  Having Account Managed three of Slingshot’s largest clients – British Heart Foundation, Mencap and Outlook Festival; Mark is set for great things in 2013 – Congratulations!

Slingshot Sponsorship’s Mark Mylam Shortlisted for Barrie Gill Award for Most Promising Young Executive at Hollis Sponsorship Awards 2013 22nd March, 2013

Slingshot’s very own Mark Mylam has been shortlisted for the prestigious Barrie Gill Award for Most Promising Young Executive at the Hollis Sponsorship Awards 2013.  The awards will be held at the Marriott Hotel in London on 26th March, 2013.

The Hollis Sponsorship Awards represent the pinnacle of any Sponsorship Executive’s career.  Honouring the very best in the sponsorship industry for 19 years, the Hollis Awards have become a highlight in the sponsorship calendar.  Throughout its lifetime, the ceremony has awarded some of the most memorable and innovative campaigns in sponsorship history.  Furthermore, no other award rewards effectiveness and excellence across all sectors of the sponsorship industry like the Hollis Sponsorship Awards; emphasising the feat of Mark’s achievement.

Mark stated ‘It is a real honour to be nominated for the Barrie Gill Award, alongside a host of young talent within the industry.  Hollis Sponsorship celebrates the increasingly diverse and innovative nature of sponsorship, and I am flattered to be recognised as a part of it.’

The Barrie Gill Award for Most Promising Young Executive, sponsored by the European Sponsorship Association, recognises young executives (27 or under) working within agencies, client companies or rights holders who are making a significant impact within their organisation or sector at large.  The awards seeks to honour excellence, recognise effectiveness of campaigns and in Mark’s case, his nomination is a testament to the hard work, creativity and driving energy that he has contributed to Slingshot Sponsorship as an agency.  We wish him so much luck for the ceremony this Tuesday!

Slingshot Sponsorship Shortlisted at the Highly Anticipated Hollis Sponsorship Awards 16th February, 2012

Slingshot Sponsorship has been shortlisted for their work with the DMA &Equifax at the upcoming Hollis Sponsorship Awards.  They will compete with 3 other extremely successful campaigns – London Olympics 2012 & Lloyds, The Prince’s Trust & RBS and GE Capital Triathlon – for the highly coveted Corporate Sponsorship Award.

The Hollis Sponsorship Awards recognise and reward the most creative and effective campaigns to have come out of the sponsorship industry during the last year. Competition has been fierce this year, with entries up by 40% on 2011, meaning the judges have had to be even tougher than in past years.

Jackie Fast, managing director of Slingshot Sponsorship, commented:

I am absolutely thrilled that Slingshot Sponsorship has been shortlisted – especially considering the calibre of the other nominees.  To be competing against a campaign as big as London 2012 having only launched less than two years ago is an amazing achievement in itself.  It really shows that our unique strategy to creating innovative sponsorship campaigns is making an impact – not only for our clients, but also challenging sponsorship industry traditions.

Now in their 18th year, The Hollis Sponsorship Awards are the most highly prized sponsorship awards covering all sectors of the sponsorship industry.  Emphasis is on excellence in effectiveness ensuring that awards are given out based on result and not marketing budget.  The short-listed and winning entries will be celebrated at the industry’s Gala Dinner on March 27th 2012 at the London Marriott Hotel Grosvenor Square.

To see a full list of shortlisted campaigns click here.

The Challenges Facing Sponsorship Evaluation 8th December, 2010

So What’s Wrong With Sponsorship Evaluation? Right now sponsorship evaluation should be a hot topic. Sponsorship spend continues to rise year on year and with the current economic situation you would think being able to demonstrate ROI would be critical right? Despite this evaluation budgets are still seemingly being cut left right and centre. So what prevents the sponsorship industry from embracing evaluation?

Here are seven possible reasons…

1. Poor objectives result in poor evaluation: Effective evaluation relies on being able to evaluate whether sponsorship objectives have been met. So if no objectives have been set, or if they simply aren’t measurable any research you commission is ultimately going to be a waste of money. However, few research companies are going to turn down the opportunity to spend your money just because you give them un-measurable objectives. The result…the industry gets flooded with ineffective evaluation.  At this point marketing directors cut budgets as the research tells them nothing they don’t already know.

The misconception that evaluation results in the termination of a sponsorship programme: In reality that is very unlikely. In the majority of cases the decision to sponsor, although not always based on sound consumer insight, is at least logical and follows good common sense. No one is going to question a beer brand that chooses to align themselves with a social occasion like a music festival. So once this basic fit has been confirmed the evaluation should be able to provide a steer to improve the effectiveness of future planned activations. e.g. Increase spend for on-site activations that deliver cut through and decrease spend on radio adverts which research shows are failing to cut through. If the evaluation can’t do this, the conclusion is your budgets probably could be better spent.

Connected to point two is point three…

3. Conflict of interests: The person most likely to commission sponsorship evaluation is the very same person that created the programme or brokered the deal. Why would you want tangible evidence to show you have wasted your employers’ money? Suddenly selling sponsorship evaluation has become a lot harder! However, let’s go back to point two. There needs to be a mindset change, sponsorship evaluation should be commissioned to help fine-tune the effectiveness of the campaign. Evaluation is a tool that can help the sponsorship look better not worse, if vanity is really so important.

4. Limited understanding of the benefits: Sponsorship evaluation should be your friend. Here is how it can help. i. If you have tangible evidence that proves sponsorship has driven bottom line value it is much easier for you to protect your future sponsorship budgets. ii. Evaluation can be used during re-negotiations to ensure rights fees are kept in-line with the likely returns for the business based on previous experience with that property. iii. Consistently planned evaluation can be used to compare the performance of sponsorship programmes within your portfolio, so you can easily see which ones are delivering the best returns and how best to allocate future budgets. iv. Evaluation helps you understand the effectiveness of all your communication touchpoints, so if radio is providing less consumer cut through you will know to switch your focus to an activity which is working more effectively.

5. It’s too expensive: It is true consumer research can be expensive, but anyone can begin to understand and benchmark their sponsorship activity without spending a penny. Ok this output data won’t tell you about the effects of sponsorship but it can help you understand the reach comparative to the other activities within your portfolio, and that’s a start. Output data can include: Unique website visitors, event attendee numbers, number of free samples distributed, competition entries, number of VIP guests that actually showed up. Suddenly you have a way of benchmarking your sponsorship portfolio.

6. Advertising equivalency values (AVEs) / media evaluation has damaged the credibility of evaluation: The sponsorship evaluation industry was founded on media evaluation with students using stopwatches to calculate the length of time a sponsors’ logo was exposed, this exposure time was then turned into a figure purporting to show what this coverage would be worth if it was bought as advertising. How on earth did this ever become the established form of evaluation?

Well going back to point 3 if you don’t want to risk your programme from being cut, this is perfect. You get a simple figure, which suggests to your bosses you are delivering real monetary value to the business and no one has the time or desire to rock the boat. There are tons of reasons why advertising equivalency value is pointless, but here is one. Advertising is evaluated on effectiveness, not the cost to buy the space. So why should sponsorship be different?

7. The poor definition of sponsorship: Every sponsorship agency has at some time tried to write their own definition of what sponsorship actually means. Most practitioners would agree it is a two-way or mutually beneficial transaction between the rights holder and the sponsor. The sponsor gains access to valuable rights and the rights holder benefits from sponsor money or expertise through a value in kind deal. However, incredibly very few definitions ever suggest that a sponsorship should be directly linked to the business bottom line and generate actual sales.  What message does this send out? You can blow thousands if not millions on sponsorship activity and never have to worry about proving a return. Sounds like a cop-out.

History suggests that in times of recession creativity and business agility come to the fore. Could this be the time when sponsorship finally grows up and begins to prove its true worth? Let’s hope so.