The 2015 #sponsorship year in 8 top blog posts

2015 was another big year for the sponsorship industry as some called for a greater focus on the fan / audience, others debated official vs unofficial and the industry in general ramped up efforts to re-position itself in the face of continually changing media consumption habits. I’ve collated 8 top blog posts which together tell the unfolding story of the year and hint at what lies ahead in 2016. If you want to be prepared for 2016, then read on.

Jim Andrews Jan 26

Put Audience Engagement at the Heart of Everything | IEG Sponsorship Blog | Jim Andrews

A short post by Jim Andrews kicks off the list. This post was significant in that Jim challenged the sponsorship industry at the turn of the year to focus on the audience/ fan, a topic which was to become one of the dominant themes of 2015.

Skildrum Reid Mar 27

The one critical skill most sponsorship professionals lack | Power Sponsorship | Kim Skildrum Reid

Kim Skildrum Reid continued with the fan / audience theme in this typically insightful post and offered the sponsorship industry a cure for Fan-nesia!

Ben Wells Jun 5

Official is dead. Its official | The Well Said Blog | Ben Wells

Ben’s writing is spot on and in this post from the middle of 2015 he challenged the value of official sponsorship, a topic which was to be debated by the industry on numerous subsequent occasions.

Robin Clarke Aug 7

Its already back: why this season will change the impact of football on brands forever | Emerging Spaces | Robin Clarke

Robin Clarke also highlighted the challenge of leveraging official status while also calling on the industry to have a more direct impact on driving fans up the marketing funnel. This latter theme was also one that raised its head time and again in 2015.

Matt Rogan Aug 26

Digital Killed the Sponsorship Star | Inside Two Circles | Matt Rogan

This post from Two Circles’ Matt Rogan included yet another challenge to the sponsorship industry to focus on the audience and, as with Robin’s post, highlighted the potential for sponsorship to more directly impact customer acquisition.

HAyman Sep 23

Why Content Strategy Is Crucial for Sponsorship ROI | GMR Blog | Andy Hayman

As content remained king in 2015, this was a timely post from the GMR Blog on the importance of having a clear idea of your content strategy from the outset of a sponsorship relationship.

Jackie Fast Oct 16

No more roulette: New rules for effective sponsorship | Campaign Asia Pacific | Jackie Fast

This article by Slingshot Sponsorship MD Jackie Fast, in which she argued for a more strategic approach and one focused on engaging the target audience rather than badging, highlighted that even in 2015 the industry struggles to shake off age-old problems.,No+more+roulette+New+rules+for+effective+sponsorship.aspx

Thode Nov 6

Breaking the model | Synergy blog | Carsten Thode

In this post, the last on my list, Carsten Thode lamented the end of the traditional property holder model of contractually obliging (or expecting) official sponsors to buy ad inventory around official broadcaster programming. It feels fitting to end the list on what is a symptom of many of the problems presented in the previous seven posts.


About the author of this post:

David is a Chartered Marketer with more than 15 years’ experience in international sports marketing roles. You can follow David on twitter @davidgfowler or connect on LinkedIn at

The author had no professional relationship with any companies or individuals featured in this list at the time of writing. All opinions are the authors own.


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