Friday, 7 December 2007

Newsletter Issue 141, December 2007

Sam Young Newsletter

Issue 141, December 2007
Hi guys,
If you are using any form of sponsorship, read about Measuring Sponsorship Effectiveness below.
Selling a PC? Then purchase File Shredder to make sure you don't sell any data with it. 
Don't forget, if you want to be taken off my mailing list, click here to send me a reply e-mail and I will remove your name.

Measuring Sponsorship Effectiveness

In the last newsletter I talked about sponsorship, and mentioned a recent AMA article, in which Kevin Clancy and Peter Krieg of Copernicus Marketing Consulting in the US said that there is evidence to suggest that many companies are moving away from using traditional media to promote their brand, and are relying more on sponsorship and events for PR.
In their article, Clancy and Krieg go on to say that suggest that clients switching PR methods need to take a far more robust approach to the switches, and when considering switching from traditional media channels and PR methods. Copernicus Marketing Consulting have kindly allowed me to reproduce their article for you to enjoy here.
With all this spending, you’d think companies would have in-depth knowledge of the effect of sponsorships on sales and brand equity. Yet according to the IEG/Performance Research Sponsorship Decision-Makers Survey, “Sponsor spending on research to determine the impact of partnerships lagged behind the lip service typically paid to wanting to measure ROI.” In fact, only one-quarter of marketers spend more than 1% of their rights fees—what they pay to do the sponsorship in the first place—on research. A startling 81% did not have a dedicated budget for either evaluating opportunities or measuring results.
Instead of using factual evidence to support their case that sponsorships and events will yield a higher relative return on investment (ROI) than traditional media options, marketers still base their decisions on gut feelings.
This can’t go on. As John Nardone of Marketing Management Analytics said recently, “Right now, money is flowing to sponsorship without accountability, not because everyone knows it works, but because there are doubts that TV works as well as it used to. Marketers are searching for alternatives. But without validation of effectiveness, it’s likely that the current sponsorship bubble will burst in three years.”
The Fact-Based Approach to Sponsorship and Event Marketing
There are several types of research tools that companies can use to make a more informed decision for a brand. Here’s a short list:
  • Pre-testing. To screen different sponsorship ideas, respondents are exposed to a sponsorship concept, just as they might be in a pre-test of a new product or service, and asked questions about the event, sponsoring brand, and brand preferences.
  • Short-term ROI measurement (sales). If a sponsorship is big enough and can be measured within a defined geography (e.g., Dunkin’ Donuts’ sponsorship of the New England Patriots), a company can:
    1. Measure the effect on sales to gauge short-term effects of the sponsorship on the brand in general.
    2. Compare the relative ROI of sponsorships in terms of sales of other forms of marketing-mix elements (TV, magazine, promotions, etc.).  
    3. Understand the interactions between sponsorship advertising that promotes the brand’s relationship to the sponsorship and other marketing investments. A company might discover, for instance, that magazine advertising complements the performance of sponsorship-related advertising.
  • Long-term ROI measurement (brand and customer equity). Research that assesses brand and customer equity can offer insights into the long-term impact of a sponsorship on the brand and continuous tracking research could measure the effects of sponsorship in the context of overall marketing effects.
  • Pre-post tracking research. Companies can further assess the impact of a sponsorship or event along what is referred to as the “hierarchy of effects.” A chain of events occurs after buyers are exposed to marketing communications. In a perfect world, buyers become aware of an event—a NASCAR race or film festival, for example. Next, they become aware of a brand’s involvement, followed by awareness of the message the brand communicates at the event. Their perceptions and attitudes are then positively impacted by the message and, finally, their preference for the brand and intention to purchase improve. But the world isn’t perfect, and very often there are missing links in the chain. By pinpointing where major or minor problems have occurred, a company can understand why performance isn’t what they had hoped for and how to address the problem.
    The type of research you might do is dictated more by the size of the sponsorship, a company’s budget, and availability of existing sales and tracking data than by lack of readily available research tools. Clearly, hunch-based media selection has a fact-based counterpart that will quickly capture the attention of marketers looking beyond gut-based decisions.
The Four Elements of an Effective Sponsorship or Event Campaign
Marketers can look to an extensive supply of case studies of sponsorships and events for insights into the characteristics of highly effective campaigns. Our company, Copernicus, analyzed a selection of nine sponsorships and events looking for general attributes of effectiveness. The analysis drew cases from the banking, beer, coffee, energy supplier, engine oil, fast food, insurance, and pizza categories. Eight of the sponsorships were sports-related and one was entertainment-related.
We found that the effect of a sponsorship or event is greatest when:
  1. Fans are engaged. Some people will spend almost as much time weighing the merits of different toothpaste brands as other people spend choosing a new car. If there’s a high concentration of buyers who are involved in a category among a sport’s, singer’s, celebrity’s, or art form’s fan base, then the sponsorship is more likely to have an impact, for example, Motor oil and NASCAR.
  2. Investment is substantial. The event is supported by serious money (i.e., substantial investments in activation and promotional activities) to leverage the sponsorship. The ratio of spending on activation to rights has been on the increase. Still, according to the IEG/Performance Research survey, 43% spend at a 1:1 ratio, spending the same amount on activation—advertising and promotions that communicate the relationship between the brand and a particular sponsorship or event—as they do on rights fees. While the Copernicus analysis did not reveal the magic ratio of activation to fees, if a company  does not invest at least as much on promoting the sponsorship to the target as it does in the rights to an opportunity, it will see little to no effect.
  3. The campaign conveys a clear message. The company uses the sponsorship to communicate a clear and compelling message about the brand to a target excited by the sponsorship and responsive to the brand. For example, Fidelity Investments sponsored Paul McCartney’s 2005 U.S. tour. The theme of the tour: Never stop doing what you love. Fidelity’s message: Let us plan the next stage of your life. For McCartney’s predominantly baby-boomer audience who are at least thinking about—if not already in the process of— retiring, communicating that Fidelity could help them continue doing what they love, just like McCartney, resonated deeply. By the end of the tour, Fidelity had reportedly generated $100+ in new and incremental business.
  4. There is clear linkage between product and sponsorship. Examples of clear connections are Yahoo! Music and XM Satellite Radio sponsoring the Grammy Awards; Beaches family resort sponsoring the Sesame Street Live tour; Michelin sponsoring Formula 1; a “clean, green” energy company sponsoring the concert tour of a musician with a well-publicized penchant for the environment. When the connection starts to become far-fetched—a fast-food company sponsoring the Olympics, for example—effectiveness decreases. If it takes longer than five seconds for you to explain the connection between a brand and an opportunity, it’s a safe bet most target buyers aren’t going to get it.
Although the sample of the Copernicus study was small, it is illustrative of what marketers can discover by taking a closer look at common attributes of effective sponsorships and events.
The take-away message? Before you invest heavily in sponsorship or event marketing, do the research. Stop relying on your gut and start using the facts from data and solid analysis to guide your sponsorship and event choices.

Company Bio: Copernicus Marketing Consulting and Research is in the business of transforming companies. We offer state-of-the-science consumer and business-to-business consulting, research, and modeling tools to help develop, plan, and implement marketing strategies that change brand trajectories, career paths, sometimes entire companies and even industries. For more information, visit

File Shredder

If you run Ad-Aware Spyware freeware to seek out nasties on your PC, you will be familiar with Lavasoft, Ad-Aware's creator. If you aren't, then go to to download this great free utility.
Lavasoft has recently launched a new product, which is very useful if you want to sell a PC, called File Shredder. It is designed to erase files from your hard disc so that they become extremely difficult, if not impossible, to recover by overwriting hard disc file storage sectors. File Shredder overwrites the hard disc using any of a dozen different algorithms, including several used by the military and one developed by the notable security professionals Bruce Schneier and Peter Gutmann.
You can conveniently shred files by dragging and dropping them into your desktop "shredding bin". You can shred all your temporary files. You can erase individual files, folders or everything in the Recycle Bin. You can clean up your computing history by using the "Shred all free space guide" to clean your computer from all old deleted files and folders that are still stored on your drives.
As I say, very, very handy if you are selling an old PC - none of your data will be left on the PC to be recovered after sale.
Costing USD$29.95, view File Shredder at

Adobe Woes

If any of you have purchased new Windows PCs and are having trouble getting existing Adobe products to work, it can be a VERY frustrating process to track down exactly what the problem is, and just how to fix them.
I recently had a problem with Adobe Acrobat 5.0 and Photoshop 7.0 refusing to even start on a new PC - even though the new PC and the old PC having exactly the same operating systems. Google is a great place to start looking for fixes for these types of problems, but despite getting some great ideas of what the problem wasn't, it still came down to some plain old skull sweat in the end.
So, just in case any of you have the same problem at any stage, I thought I would document the problems and the solutions here.
The Acrobat 5.0 Problem: Acrobat refused to start on the new PC at all. I then uninstalled it and attempted to reinstall from CD. The 'setup.exe' file on the CD wouldn't start. I tried Start | Run and navigating to the CD and that didn't work either. Adobe Photoshop kept giving me an error on start of ""
So the fix:
  • Uninstall all Adobe software.
  • Start up in safe mode (restart the PC, then keep hitting the F8 key during start up & the PC will go to a black screen list. Use the keyboard up arrow to select 'Safe mode', then Enter)
  • Press Control, Alt & Delete and the Task Manager will open. Select the Processes tab, select explorer.exe and choose End Process. A "Task Manager Warning" box "WARNING: terminating a process can cause undesired results..." will appear. Click 'Yes'. Your desktop icons and task bar will disappear. Keep the Task Manager open during this entire process.
  • Go to the File menu and select New Task. Under Open, type 'cmd' and click OK. A black DOS screen box will open.
  • Minimise the Task Manager.
  • In the DOS screen, key cd "C:\Program Files\Common Files\Adobe\Acrobat\ActiveX" and hit the Enter key.
  • Key del AcroIEHelper.dll and Enter; del AcroPDF.dll and Enter; del pdfshell.dll and Enter. Key exit and Enter. The DOS box will close.
  • Maximise Task Manager. Go to File | New Task. Key explorer.exe and click OK. (Your desktop should reappear.)
  • Open Windows Explorer. Delete all the following folders & files:
    • Program Files\Adobe\Acrobat 8.0
    • Program Files\Common Files\Adobe\Acrobat
    • Documents and Settings\[User Name]\Application Data\Adobe\Acrobat
    • Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Adobe\Acrobat
    • Documents and Settings\All Users\Desktop\Adobe Reader 8.lnk
    • Documents and Settings\All Users\Start Menu\Programs\Adobe Reader 8.lnk
    • Program Files\Internet Explorer\PLUGINS\nppdf32.dll
    • Program Files\Netscape\Netscape Browser\plugins\nppdf32.dll
  • Reinstall Adobe Acrobat 5.0 & Photoshop 7.0 while in Safe Mode.
  • Exit Task Manager & restart your PC.
  • On restart, open Windows Explorer. Go to C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Start Menu\Programs\Startup, and delete the Acrobat Gamma Loader shortcut
  • In Windows Explorer, go to the C:\Windows\Fonts folder. Under the View Menu, select 'Status Bar'. Check in the status bar (at the bottom of the WE window, that there are less than 500 fonts in the folder. If there are more than 500 fonts, create a new folder under My Documents, and cut and paste fonts that you don't often use from C:\Windows\Fonts to the new folder until you have less than 500 fonts installed.
  • Shut down the PC, restart and try both programmes.
  • Then download a new version of Adobe Acrobat Reader (version 7.0.5 is OK)
You too should be back in action :-)

TLAs for SMEs

Here are this newsletter's TLAs for you:
  • FTE, Full Time Equivalent. Part-timers who make up a full time person, or portions of a position.

Please feel free to email me with any TLAs that you want to get the bottom (meaning!) of.

Tips, Short+Hot Keys
Over the next few newsletters, we are going to look at all you can do with Alt and numbers. This time it's 2 and 3:
  • Access "Open the folder one level up from the open folder (Up One Level button); use within the Open, File New Database and Export dialog boxes" Alt & 2
  • PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook & Word "Open the folder one level up from the open folder (Up One Level button); use within the Open and Save As dialog boxes (in File menu)" Alt & 2
  • Access "Close the open dialog box and opens your World Wide Web search page (Search the Web button); use when working in the Open, File New Database and Export dialog boxes" Alt & 3
  • PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook & Word "Close the open dialog box and opens your World Wide Web search page (Search the Web button); use when working in the File Open or Insert File dialog boxes" Alt & 3

Hot Linx
If you have a strange file land up in your email inbox and you just can't work out what you can open it with, then is the site for you to find out at.
And for those of you who are a little more adventurous, go to for all those specialised tweaks and tools, including how to create a memory stick bootdisk
To check out your ecological footprint, go to the Ministry of Economic Development's website at 
For a full list of DOS commands, you can't go past this list. From APPEND to XCOPY, see it all at

                                Catch you again soon!! E-mail your suggestions to me here

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