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IEG Will Measure ROO for New Roush Sponsors

Sports Business Daily, June 13, 2011

By Tripp Mickle

Roush Fenway Racing has hired IEG’s sponsorship measurement division to provide independent, third-party return-on-objective analysis to new sponsors.

The race team and sponsorship analysis company are labeling the new service RoushFenwayOnTrack. IEG has never partnered with a team or property to do similar research in the past. Roush executives hope the service enables sponsors to better evaluate the value of their sponsorships with the race team.

“We’re trying to put a mechanism in place that addresses sponsors’ concern and gives them that comfort that there is a measurement program,” said Roush President Steve Newmark. “If you’re three months into a sponsorship and you’re having a conversation that, ‘We need to measure this,’ then it’s too late. You have to measure as you go along.”

Roush will pay for the service from IEG and include it in its sponsorship packages alongside assets such as driver appearances, production days and show car programs. Sponsors will be able to hold independent meetings with IEG to define their objectives and develop measurement tools to track their sponsorship’s performance. IEG will share the results with the partner.

“When the sponsor gets their results, it won’t be biased in any way,” said Larry Albus, vice president, client leadership, IEG Consulting Group. “Our task is to provide the information to the client, the sponsor. We’re on retainer to the team to provide that information. It’s about as independent as you can be.”

Sponsors can include the measurement services from IEG during negotiations, Newmark said. He added that Roush developed the partnership with IEG in response to calls from existing and prospective partners for a system for justifying their sponsorship spending.

“We’re fairly confident the results will be good and are putting this out there based on our confidence in our program, but like any objective measurement service, we know the results might not be good,” Newmark said. “Still, we believe we have to provide value to our sponsors, and this is a way to show it.”

Four of Roush’s major NASCAR Sprint Cup partners were up for renewal this season. 3M is the only one to renew to date, and IEG measurement services weren’t included in the deal.

The team remains in negotiations with Diageo’s Crown Royal, Aflac and UPS. Newmark said he expects those talks to continue through the summer.