Agile Sponsorship To Win
The IT world is buzzing with things agile. Agile methodology has been spreading virally since 2001 when the Agile Manifesto was written.
Agile methodology was created by software developers and mainly used in the IT. But it’s actually more about management than development and, therefore, we believe, is ABSOLUTELY applicable across industries. It’s time to bring agile to sponsorship!
Agile software development refers to a group of software development methodologies based on iterative development, where requirements and solutions evolve through collaboration between self-organizing cross-functional teams.
Agile development methodology provides opportunities to assess the direction of a project throughout the development lifecycle. This is achieved through regular cadences of work, known as sprints or iterations, at the end of which teams must present a potentially shippable product increment. By focusing on the repetition of abbreviated work cycles as well as the functional product, agile methodology is described as “iterative” and “incremental”.
In a human language that means well-disciplined development process with very frequent inspection and adaption. Agile philosophy encourages testing the assumptions quicker, measuring results (!) and making changes.
There are thousands of articles and books written on the topic, one example if you are curious.
Agile methodology has been proven so successful in the IT, that today it’s hard to find a team working without it (or pretending to work). The reason is straightforward: this approach guarantees better results faster. Therefore no time and money are wasted.
Thinking agile means thinking in sprints
Santander is one of the first to bring agile to marketing and sponsorship , building a marketing strategy with the 2-weeks cycles.
This short planning cycle is uncommon in the industry. In marketing & business, EVERYONE believes in planning & forecasting. This is one of the pillars and not many brave marketers dare to argue the importance of it.
Don’t get us wrong, planning is great. No one can reach a destination if she doesn’t know where she is going.
A granular long-term planning is more of a myth than a reality. In marketing, audience preferences and, in some cases, the audience itself is constantly changing. Therefore marketing plan should be built with flexibility in mind. It must be agile.
Going as far agile as Santander may not necessarily be your cup of tea. At the end of the day, it does require shifting the mindset of the whole organisation and making hundreds of people buy into the vision.
There are other ways to implement agile sponsorship and drive better results.
When it comes to activating sponsorship, data is king. And agile methodology dictates measuring and amending at every step.
It's common sense to measure a sponsorship by surveying once (if lucky twice) in a season. Great in-depth data but bad timing. Outdated information can be as good as nothing.
How would you know the sponsorship is performing well in a fast-paced and unpredictable environment of sports?
Snaptivity is one of the answers. Snaptivity allows you to target & measure your campaigns and make changes if necessary as the game goes. While the platform is among fans favourites, it also allows tracking the campaign performance pretty much in real-time.
Snaptivity is an example of agile sponsorship, with the tools to run campaigns, measure and amend, all in a short span of time.
With Snaptivity you can target your audience in a dynamic way not only based on demographics but also according to how fans feel at that particular moment.
Using agile methodology in sponsorship shrinks the learning cycle from years to days.
Why is that important? Not only because it helps to increase sponsorship efficiency, but also because it helps to reduce the waste.
Why spend money and efforts on activations that may or may not work? To cut the waste, agile sponsorship suggests to measure the outcomes as frequent as possible and continuously test new assumptions (messaging, design, mediums) to find the best working combination. Like in Snaptivity case, a brand can see how messaging and graphics are performing, whether fans love it (share it) or not-so-much. And if they do, a brand hits the bingo by getting organic exposure, establishing meaningful connecting with the audience and having data to measure marketing ROI.
Agile sponsorship leads to a better connection with the audience, as fans receive valuable & relevant content. Using agile makes sponsorship manager more informed about the audience and allows to learn in depth the audience preferences.
Agile methodology has already brought 300% increase in efficiency in product development. Can it deliver similar results for sponsorship activations? Time to bring agile to sponsorship.
Let us know what you think about agile sponsorship. We are happy to write more about How-to if you are interested.