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Sponsorship Of Fairs And Festivals To Total $634 Million In 2004

May 21, 2004:

For Immediate Release:
May 21, 2004

For More Information Contact:
William Chipps, IEG, LLC, Tel: 312/944-1727; william.chipps@sponsorship.com; www.sponsorship.com

Chicago, Ill. As the fair and festival season gets underway, sponsorship spending on annual events ranging from small community celebrations to large state fairs is expected to total $634 million, up from $615 million last year.

The increased spending is fueled by three factors: the rebounding economy, corporate America’s growing interest in one-to-one marketing platforms and properties’ stepped-up efforts to offer customized packages for sponsors and prospects.

"It’s been a tough sales environment over the past several years, but the fog is finally starting to lift. Companies are increasingly aligning with fairs, festivals and other events offering one-to-one marketing opportunities during the summer, a period when consumers are hard to reach through traditional media," said William Chipps, senior editor, IEG Sponsorship Report.

Another driver behind the increase in sponsorship: more tailored packages. A growing number of fairs and festivals are moving away from one-size-fits-all sponsorship packages in favor of customized inventory geared to the specific needs of each prospect.

Take California’s Solano County Fair, which is projecting a 56 percent increase in sponsorship revenue this year as the result of offering value-added packages to both existing and new sponsors. For example, the 10-day fair sold a local Chevrolet dealer a $126,000 package offering first-time presenting status and exposure on a new sign, nearly doubling the auto dealership’s $70,000 ’03 package.

"Fairs and festivals are looking for new ways to add value to their sponsorship packages, and those efforts are paying off through incremental revenue and stronger relations with sponsors," Chipps said.

Properties also are benefiting from the rebounding travel industry, with cruise lines, destinations and airlines all showing renewed interest in fairs and festivals. Case in point: Royal Caribbean Int’l is taking its Ultimate Adventure Tour to 34 events this summer, up from 24 in ’03. The mobile marketing program features a 47-seat theater and the cruise line’s signature rock climbing wall.

Other categories expressing more interest in fairs and festivals include quick service restaurants, financial services companies and cable systems.

For More Information Contact:
William Chipps, IEG, LLC, Tel: 312/944-1727; Fax: 312/944-1897;
E-mail: william.chipps@sponsorship.com or visit IEG's Web site: www.sponsorship.com

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