Peer-Powered Marketing: Relevance, Trust and Collaboration

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Transcript of Peer-Powered Marketing: Relevance, Trust and Collaboration

  • PEER-POWERED MARKETINGRelevance, Trust and Collaboration

  • Sponsorship marketing makes you feel good. And in this rare case, you is both the sponsor and the sponsoree. By definition, sponsorship marketing is typically done for promotional purposes, to generate publicity or to obtain access to a wider audience than your budget can afford.

    When a brand sponsors an event, community group, athletic team or cause that the brands poten-tial prospects are connected to, those prospects are likely to think more highly of the brand. This positive outlook can lead to trust, which can then lead to a prospect-to-customer conversion. The best part is that the brand doesnt need to say a thing about itself. The mere act of sponsoring indi-rectly showcases support of what their prospects are so passionate about.

    In short, everyone wins. How does everyone win? Because the focus is on the consumer, not on the brand. If a brand is too pushy or tries to refocus the spotlight on itself in any way, the authenticity fails, as does the entire point. That trust you have been working to gain, is now lost.

    New dynamics, ready communication and word of mouth are driving brand-consumer relationships and reshaping the consumer experience model. Today, brands need to find a way to become a non-intrusive presence inside life experiences, according to Iskra Dobreva, social media strategist for Verizon Wireless. In a nutshell, consumers wont share brand content thats not strongly relevant to them. The brand is there not to bother, but to serve, and to become so highly relevant that in the words of Ed Kaczmarek of Mondelez International, it automatically does not seem like marketing. And when a brands process doesnt feel like marketing, that works toward building (and truly earn-ing) brand trust.


    | | Peer-Powered Marketing

    MEET PEARWe at Pear work to help businesses of all sizes

    obtain and build a reputation within their markets, and in the end grow their customer base. How?

    Through sponsorship. Pear is a sponsorship plat-form that connects consumer organizations to

    businesses. Its that simple.

  • In 2013, Molson Canadian distributed beer refrigerators throughout Europe, which could only be opened with a Canadian passport. The mere presence of a public beer fridge was enough to garner attention and social media activity, but Molson deserves accolades by shifting the focus from the beer and turning it toward the individual all because of the passport, a celebration of the unique Canadian identity.

    Then, Molson became even more effective by reaching beyond their demographic. The overall goal of the campaign was not necessarily to foster Canadian pride around a Canadian product, but rather to celebrate national pride that everyone can share. Yes, the brand and product are clearly Canadian, but the overall result of the campaign resulted in a sense of nostalgia for ones home no matter where they were originally from. In fact, the promoted YouTube video from the campaign ended with the slogan, Heres to being proud of where youre from. What did this campaign pro-vide? Authenticity and relevance. So much so that Molson reintroduced it during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.


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    Achieving relevance is always about having the right delicate mix of ingredi-entsa finely-tuned understanding of customer needs, wants, behaviors and desires; a decent budget, and a solid, real-world strategy. But now, brands also need engagement. In a world of engage-ment, messages are amplified and in-fluence is made in real-time. Customers can then become our collaborators, our brand ambassadors, our sales force, and our ad creative team but only if we earn their trust. Relevancy builds trust.

    Trust is a huge factor in getting people to share content online. According to a recent New York Times and Latitude Research sur-vey, 94% of consumers polled said they carefully consider how the information they share will be useful to the recipient before they pass it along. 73% say they share information because it

    helps them connect with others who share their interests.


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    Weve discussed building trust from a user-perspective; how much are businesses willing to invest in earning that trust? Quite a bit actually. According to IEG and AdAge, sports-focused sponsorships in North America will see a 4.9% increase of spending efforts in 2014 compared to 2013; this ac-counts for around 70% of total sponsorship spending. However the percentage is below last years expectations of 6%, which is important to keep in mind.

    When thinking of what categories of causes to support or focus on from a marketing perspective, look at what is predicted to grow, not necessarily where the total dollar spend is expected to be.year.

    Spending is increasing for causes and staying even for festivals, fairs and annual events. Total global spending on sponsorships

    is projected to reach $55.3 billion, up 4.1% from 2013.

    Other significant categories to capture North American sponsorship spending will be:

    Causes +3.4%

    Arts +1.4%

    Festivals, fairs and annual events +1.7%

    Associations and member orgs +1.4%

    $1.84 B

    $927 M

    $853 M

    $576 M

  • Each year, the Chicago Walk for Adoption as-sociation gathers to support adoptive families throughout the Chicagoland area. The Walk for Adoption is not a fundraising event, but rather a community event, which means they require community support, sponsorships and donations to continue their mission.

    In 2013, they began working with Pears plat-form allowing them to connect with the national brands with which they wished to align. Walk co-founder Stacy Penner says the association chooses national brands that are family-friendly and that are aligned with the kid-friendly values, both of which characterize the nonprofits mission of providing support for families who are adopt-ing children. The groups co-founders and key influencers share sponsor branded content

    online, both to help publicize the walk and to earn brand sponsorships.

    The mothers said they were very happy to share it, often and widely. Beyond being able to choose the brands, Penner says, they are also able to choose the way they share the content. Penner reflects, It wasnt invasive. Nobody was shoving anything down our throats. Nobody was pushing us to do any-thing we didnt want to do. We were able to choose sponsors that reflected our family-friendly community. And then that way, we were also able to, in return, put that informa-tion back out there and put those companies and organizations at the forefront. So we were able to help each other.

    We were able to help each other.

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    SPONSORSHIP SUCCESS STORYChicagos Walk for Adoption

  • Supporting a community can make everyone feel all warm and fuzzy, but people still want to get something in return for their contributions. Kickstarter brought that kickback to the forefront when they launched their crowdfunding platform in 2009.

    People who back Kickstarter projects are offered tangible rewards and special experiences in exchange for their monetary pledges. Higher pledge amounts earn givers higher-valued rewards, thereby increasing the likelihood of high dollar donations. Per Kickstarter, projects with a reward of $20 or less succeed with project funding 45% of the time while projects without a reward of $20 or less succeed 28% of the time.

    This concept of reward-based sponsorship has been around for ages, primarily in the entertainment verticals. For instance, if you donate at one level to PBS, you receive a DVD of the movie youre watching. Donate at a higher level and you also get the sequel. Now take the dollar signs out of the program. For instance, one of Pears original sponsors, Verizon Wireless is willing to sponsor your local group, but your group has to earn it. How can they earn it? By crowdsourcing their friends, family and others to complete certain marketing activities that benefit Verizon but are free of cost to the users. These activities can include signing up for their email newsletter, liking their Facebook page, watching a YouTube video, and sharing content via social media channels.


    | | Peer-Powered Marketing

    Value-added interactionsare increasingly more critical as consumers are

    overwhelmed withimpression-based media

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    Now compare the two models. Below you can see the sponsorship flow with the Kickstarter model and the Pear.

    As you can see above, both parties have a vested interest. It doesnt matter which way the value is going between the business and the individual. In either instance, it results in a personal tie to the company.

    In the case of Kickstarter, the individual is supporting the company. In the case of Pear, the compa-ny is supporting the individual. And in exchange, they both get a gift of goodwill which then leads to loyalty and sustained engagement. When a company and an individual have a selfless exchange, both benefit from the trust that results.

    With the Verizon example, both parties benefited. The group obtained a sponsor, and Verizon gained a larger community and did a good deed. Both parties won.

  • When Verizon Wireless was loo