Slingshot Sponsorship Announced as National Business Awards Finalist for the New Business of the Year Category 16th July, 2013

Slingshot Sponsorship has been shortlisted for the New Business of the Year Award at this year’s National Business Awards. Slingshot Sponsorship is a new breed of sponsorship agency – with their head office in London, they work across the globe helping clients develop strategies that maximise the commercial potential through partnerships.

The extremely prestigious awards recognises the best in business with winners being revealed at the National Business Awards gala dinner held on 12 November in London.

Michael Hayman, Co-founder, Start-Up Britain who is the judge for the category said: “Slingshot Sponsorship stands out as a disruptive force in their sector. Demonstrating solid growth and a clear commitment to CSR, it impresses as a determinedly entrepreneurial business, working with blue-chip clients.”The extremely prestigious awards recognises the best in business with winners being revealed at the National Business Awards gala dinner held on 12 November in London.

Jackie Fast, Managing Director of Slingshot Sponsorship said: “We are absolutely thrilled to be shortlisted at the National Business Awards. We are an agency that always strives to deliver more in everything that we do and it is an honour to be recognised for all our team’s hard work.  It is especially relevant in the business sector where commercial partnerships are becoming vital to organisations in light of public funding cuts and the recent economic climate.”

Over 150 of Britain’s leading businesses, business leaders and social enterprises have today been revealed as finalists for the 2013 National Business Awards. The finalists announced today represent 15 categories including the Croner Employer of the Year, the Smith & Williamson Entrepreneur of the Year and Santander Small to Medium-Sized Business of the Year. The Leader of the Year finalists   and Decade of Excellence winner will be announced over the coming months.

This year’s shortlisted businesses have a collective global turnover of more than £341 billion, covering activities as diverse as telecoms, construction, entertainment, publishing and manufacturing.  One fifth of the finalists turnover more than £1 billion annually – with the lowest turnover peaking at £30k and highest reaching £55 billion. They represent regions from all over Britain including London, Exeter, Glasgow and Cardiff.

Dame Helen Alexander, Chair of judges for the National Business Awards, said: “These organisations and leaders represent exceptional success over the past year.  The environment has been tough; these are the firms leading the way to growth.  There’s a broad spectrum of sectors represented, as well as organisations of very different sizes, reflecting the diversity of British business and the vitality of our economy.  Congratulations to all our finalists.”

Alex Evans, Programme Director of the National Business Awards said: “The quality of finalists is outstanding every year – with Britain’s most promising new businesses and most impactful social enterprises recognised alongside top performing SMEs and the most sustainable mid market and large cap firms.”

GB Taekwondo appoints Slingshot Sponsorship to develop sponsorship strategy and sales for their Road to Rio Olympics 11th July, 2013

GB Taekwondo, one of the biggest sporting stars to come out of London 2012, has appointed sponsorship specialist marketing agency Slingshot Sponsorship to develop strategy and sales across their commercial properties in the lead up to the Rio Olympics.  The initial activity will allow corporate sponsors to grow with the sport both nationally as well as abroad.

GB Taekwondo’s enormous success of gaining two medals from only four athletes at the London Olympics has presented a huge return for Team GB and an incredible opportunity for brands to align with.  The 2000 year old martial art has over 60 million participants worldwide with over 100,000 in the UK alone.  Slingshot Sponsorship will be working with GB Taekwondo to identify and uncover their assets in order to connect with this diverse sporting audience – contributing to a stronger engagement with brands during the growth of the sport in the lead up to Rio Olympics.

Steve Flynn, Operations Director at GB Taekwondo said:

We are really pleased to be working with Slingshot Sponsorship who are helping us showcase the sponsorship opportunities within our sport. Their expertise will allow us to maximise our commercial potential and amplify our activity – both with the sponsors we are currently are working with as well as identifying new commercial partners that will help us achieve our objectives in the lead up to Rio.

Jackie Fast, MD at Slingshot Sponsorship said:

We are thrilled that GB Taekwondo have chosen us as their sponsorship agency.  Sitting at such a vital turning point coming out of London 2012, we cannot wait to start helping them develop and grow their commercial potential – creating relationships that will help them realise their Rio Olympic goals.

British Heart Foundation Appoints Slingshot Sponsorship For ‘Hands-only CPR’ Road-show 18th October, 2012

British Heart Foundation Appoints Slingshot Sponsorship For ‘Hands-only CPR’ Road-show

Following the first phase of their highly successful Hands-only CPR  campaign, the British Heart Foundation (the BHF) hasappointed Slingshot Sponsorship as their exclusive sponsorship agency.

The campaign, fronted by tough guy actor Vinnie Jones, was designed to raise awareness of the fact that anyone who doesn’thave CPR training should ignore the kiss of life in favour of ‘hard and fast’ compressions in the centre of the chest to help someone who has had a cardiac arrest. The expertly executed advert and training film created resonance through association – using the beat of Stayin’ Alive by the Bee Gees to help people understand how quickly they should carry out chest compressions.

Aggarwal, Head of Corporate Partnerships at the BHF, said:

With the Vinnie Jones advert and training film receiving mass exposure throughout the UK and, in turn, saving dozens of lives, Slingshot Sponsorship has been recruited to build a commercial strategy around the campaign as well as acquire corporate partners to support it.”

The following phases of the charity’s Hands-only CPR initiative will feature a mass media campaign in November followed by an experiential tour bringing the concept to people nationwide and allowing the public to put their CPR knowledge into practice.

Jackie Fast, Managing Director of Slingshot Sponsorship, added:

We are thrilled to be working with the BHF.  It is extremely innovative in its approach and together we will be able to provide the tools to drive this campaign into the hearts of the nation.”

When Sponsorship Goes Green… 10th September, 2012

With the increasing prominence of environmental issues, event organisers can no longer neglect such concerns when planning for their respective event. This has led to ever more sophisticated green strategies, as well as a number of award shows, conferences and competitions dedicated solely to sustainability; the Tree-Athlon, the What Car? Green Awards and the International Green Awards to name a few.

In his latest blog post “Olympic Sponsorship: Remember the Positives”, Nick Anderson mentioned such “sponsorships [were] becoming dangerously close to having an adverse effect on certain brands”: McDonald’s and Coca Cola were both heavily criticised in the early stages of their Olympic sponsorship. Nevertheless their Recycling program is playing a big part in achieving LOCOG’s goal to hold the most sustainable Games ever. At the beginning of the Games, Coca Cola placed 4,000 branded recycling bins across the venues and the Olympic Park, committing to recycle every soft drink bottle that was put in the bins into a new one within six weeks. Furthermore all Coca‑Cola products currently sold at the Olympic and Paralympic Games are in 100 per cent recyclable PET packaging containing 25 per cent recycled plastic and 22.5 per cent plant-based plastic. Those are just two examples of many actions that Coca Cola took ahead of the Games to implement their sustainable strategy.

Another example of this development is the recyclable McDonald’s restaurant that was built on the Olympic site. With this initiative, McDonald’s aim at reusing 75% of the restaurant and recycling almost everything else by re-allocating all the furniture and equipment to McDonald’s UK restaurant estate after the Games.

But it is not just sports events that are concerned by this green movement. Music festivals and their sponsors are increasingly trying to integrate sustainability within their sponsorship strategies. According to a Havas Sports & Entertainment Research, 80 per cent of European festival goers strongly feel that sponsors need a green strategy. The Glastonbury Festival in the UK seems to have it right, through partnerships with WaterAid, Oxfam and Greenpeace as proofs of its environmental commitment. The 2012 Reading Festival, which took place two weeks ago, followed this trend as well by launching a Recycling Champion competition two months before the event. The Student Recycling Champion worked with Every Can Counts to help promote the recycling of drinks cans and he got a chance to get backstage access to this major music event.

A benchmark example in the US comes from the Lollapalooza Festival in Chicago that dedicated a whole area within its site, called the Green Street, to showcase various environmental initiatives from different organisations and to engage festival goers. The Lollapalooza Festival included several charities and environmental groups in its sponsorship portfolio and gave them the chance to promote their environmental projects.

As the Havas Sports & Entertainment Research study proved, it is important to understand that “green sponsorship” is vital to every right owner and sponsor, no matter which age group they target. A decade ago sponsors with a green strategy were unique. Nowadays it has become a fundamental requirement of any sponsorship strategy. Thus whether you are a right owner or a sponsor, don’t miss out on the sustainability trend and seize the opportunity to make something unique out of it.

Red Bull Puts Cliff Diving on the Female Map 5th July, 2012

Slingshot alongside Scandinavian colleagues BITE manage the sponsorship for the Red Bull Cliff Diving Series in Grimstad, Norway. The World Series is cliff diving at its most death defying, with divers descending from heights of up to 28 metres. The Norway event, the second stop in the World Series calendar, takes place this weekend 6-7th July.

This year we managed to secure former female Olympic and World Champion Kari Traa and newcomer Anna Bader to this event in Norway and this recent article (translated from Norwegian) highlights this fantastic partnership that was built to promote the introduction of female cliff diving in the World Series in 2013.

Taken from an interview with Norwegian broadcaster NRK:

“Women should be bolder”, says former Olympic and World Champion Kari Traa as she tries to get more women involved in cliff diving.

On Tuesday Traa was at Justøybroa in Lillesand to sponsor the German Anna Bader, a lone female in the midst of the male-dominated sport. Next year it is determined that female divers will participate in the world series, and so, Bader was invited to Norway by Kari Traa to make a so-called “teaser dive.”

“The last seconds before the precipice, I am very focused. I’m trying to find the right feeling and energy, so at the moment I jump I am one hundred percent focused. It takes a lot of courage, but women are certainly able to carry on with this. I am really looking forward to women competing next year”, said the smiling 28-year-old to NRK.

Tuesday’s event was just a taster of what will happen in Grimstad during the Red Bull Cliff Diving this Saturday.

For more information on BITE and Slingshot Sponsorship’s joint services in the UK and Europe, please click here.

For the full article and to see Bader’s cliff dive on Tuesday at Justøybroa click here.

Sponsorship Sales: Make a Lasting Impression 8th March, 2012

So, your consumers and audience have been audited, your assets valuated and your sales materials designed. Now the time comes to really nail down specific brands that you will be approaching with your proposal. This is often not thought through.  Far too often, rights holders are not taking into consideration the actual likelihood of the brand wanting to partner with the property or the brand’s objectives, this leading to a significant amount of time being wasted in getting knocked back by brands with little interest in discussing the opportunity.

This blog provides a brief insight into how to adopt an improved, more streamlined and strategic sales approach allowing you to encourage qualitative conversations, save time in approaching irrelevant prospects, close deals faster, improve sales staff morale and generally increase sponsorship revenue on the whole.

Sales Preparation

Prospect lists: It is easy to rush this process and simply name all brands within sponsorship categories that may be of relevance to your property. For example, motorsport lends itself to brands looking to promote the idea of luxury and wealth and/or simply raise awareness on a mass scale as a result of the sport’s extensive global following. Sponsorship categories therefore tend to consist of such brand areas as alcohol, telecoms, financial institutions, insurance, watches and consumer electronics to name those most prominent within the sport today.

Simply listing all brands within each of these categories without really looking into whether they will actually consider the opportunity can be highly time-inefficient and will also hinder the sales approach as the knowledge of each brand will not be deep enough to hold a sales conversation regarding how this opportunity is going to help this brand in particular.


A tailored approach: Take the brand’s objectives into consideration – there is nothing more off-putting than a generic call which screams “you are the 100th prospect I have approached today.” Although initially being more time consuming, researching company and brand objectives will allow for a more engaging and qualitative conversation, giving your contact the incentive to find out more.

As a sales person, this is also much more satisfying than repeating the same old spiel to each prospect you speak to. Taking a thought-out approach will also prepare you to be more responsive when asked, “how exactly do you see us (the brand) getting involved?”

Little details: Research the prospect’s previous activity and make note of some specific points that relate to the platform you are offering. This will show that you have really considered the company and have a good knowledge of what direction they are looking to take the brand in.

Build a rapport: From first contact to signing on the dotted line, most deals will generally require a number of calls and meetings, so try to establish a rapport with your contacts from the get go. Be sure to make notes of any personal comments they have made, plans they have coming up, comments about their day, which football team they support – anything that can be brought forward to the next conversation will help emphasise the fact that you are being considerate of both them and their brand.

Also, keep it in mind that the opportunity you are presenting will be equally beneficial to both parties (the rights holders and the brand) and so a call should take the format of a conversation rather than a one-way sales pitch. By being personable, upbeat and positive, you will project the fact that you believe in your project as a sponsorship platform.

Relevant opportunities: Certain sponsorship opportunities will appeal more to different audiences.  For example, financial institutions that rely on consumer trust loyalty may be more interested in hospitality in order to build and deepen their customer relationship.  Alternatively, car manufacturers may be keen on utilising online and social media integration, exclusive content and promotions and competitions to build awareness of new product launches.

Feedback: Many disinterested brands will tend to simply state that the opportunity is not relevant to them, providing no further feedback. However, you should always try to ask for more detail on what their current objectives are, how they currently market themselves, and what sponsorships they may look to be involved with in the future. This will give you a better idea of how similar brands may react and how to deal with it as well as give you some key information about the company’s marketing activity. This may prove useful as it may be that they are more suited to one of your alternative platforms.

Sales are often looked at as the most difficult and daunting part of the sponsorship acquisition process; however when it comes to selling your proposal, it is important to remember that if you have a strong property with suitable lead time, are approaching the relevant brands and taking a strategic approach, securing sponsors should be a piece of cake. Just remember, Slingshot Sponsorship is here to help with the rest… and sales too!