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Monthly Archives: January 2018

Guest Blog | Calling All Brand Managers: New Year, New Sponsorship Opportunities

Guest blog post by Brett Blumberg
Sales and Sustainability Manager at Kilowatt Events, Inc.

Photo Source: Pexels

Photo Source: Pexels

As much as sustainability professionals would love to expect all events and their sponsors, talent, fans, and other stakeholders to demand socially and environmentally responsible productions (and reap the many cost savings and business advantages of doing so), events run on tight budgets and money unfortunately does not grow on native, drought-tolerant, certified organic trees.

This presents two options to event owners for funding a sustainable production if the internal desire or external pressures exist: self-funding, or third-party funding from grants, rebates, miscellaneous donations, or sponsorships from organizations like yours. While many event organizers understand the importance of self-funding, many others require these strategic partnerships to bring their visions to life. However, you may not realize just how beneficial a sustainability sponsorship could be for your brand when you help the event to support local community needs, satisfy stakeholder interests and, perhaps even more significant to your immediate goals, showcase these efforts in front of your target market.

More Opportunities Than Ever.

Luckily, we live in an age with seemingly unlimited opportunities for face-to-face consumer engagement at large events. According to a 2016 study by the U.S. Census Bureau, live events hosted in temporary facilities or permanent venues not owned by the event (think music festivals, traveling sporting events, art shows, heritage festivals, etc.) nearly doubled their annual U.S. revenue from $4.23 billion in 2002 to $8.4 billion in 2012 (Encyclopedia of American Industries, 2017). This means there have been and will be more events, more attendees, and more opportunities to promote your company year after year.

Selecting Events to Sponsor Can be Challenging. Here’s a Tip. 

With so many events to choose from, it may feel overwhelming to select the one with the greatest return on investment. During your team’s periodic marketing meetings to establish resource allocation for promotional opportunities, you will surely consider which events align with your target market, long-term marketing objectives, and overall brand imaging.

Consider taking it one step further by understanding your company’s vision and social values. Can any of your social objectives or initiatives be integrated into event operations? Perhaps you have recently created a new marketing campaign that ties together your product’s functionality with its eco-friendly supply chain, aligning it with the event’s sustainable sourcing policy. Maybe your brand has partnered with a non-profit to help provide job training for an underrepresented demographic, and the event you may want to sponsor is also committed to hiring staff from disadvantaged communities. Why not “double-dip” on a sponsorship to cross-promote your products and services alongside your community benefits?

Yes, there seem to be many events from which to choose, but by being selective and understanding how the event culture, legacy, and deeper-rooted purpose can be connected to those of your organization, your best choices will become clear.

Read the full story on LinkedIn.

NFL’s Super Challenge: Recycling Food Wrappers and Beer Cups From 60,000 Fans

Star Tribune
By 

From blinking cups to purses, NFL, stadium aim for maximum recycling. 

2018.01.24-NFLRecycling-IMAGE

Heidi Riley dumped plastic into a recycling bin after a game at U.S. Bank Stadium. Photo Credit: Carlos Gonzalez, Star Tribune

They have finally found a home for the purses.

Whether it was a Fendi shoulder sling or a Trader Joe’s tote, the thousands of bags that Vikings fans have relinquished at U.S. Bank Stadium security gates during the past two years wound up in a landfill or incinerator.

But in the drive to score what the NFL and stadium officials hope will be the first zero-waste Super Bowl — and launch the first zero-waste football stadium — those fans can now donate their bags to the women’s nonprofit Dress for Success.

That’s one of the more novel solutions the stadium has adopted in its effort to dramatically increase the amount of gameday trash that is put to good use through recycling or composting.

“There are Coach purses — our women are ecstatic,” said Stephanie Silvers, executive director of Dress for Success, which provides financial education and job-hunting support for 1,000 women a year

It’s taken awhile to get to this point, stadium and NFL officials acknowledge. A year ago, the stadium was recycling 20 percent of the garbage that left the stadium after every game and event — up to 40 tons in total — mostly food waste and non-recyclable containers. And those purses.

Now “we are well down the path,” said Mike Vekich, chairman of the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority.

But getting there took a lot of work.

In the last year, the food vendors have all switched to compostable containers. The stadium purchased some 375 clearly marked, $1,500 single and triple compartmented bins, which now stand like sentinels along the concourses and in all the suites. Then there are three massive compactors in the bowels of the building to compress each type of waste before it’s loaded into waiting trucks.

The stadium management firm, SMG, has hired a sustainability manager, arranged to donate all unopened food from the kitchens to food shelves, and contracted to deliver recyclables and organics to the Hennepin County Recycling and Transfer Station in Brooklyn Park and a composting facility in Rosemount.

“It’s an unbelievably large operation,” said Paul Kroening, Hennepin County’s supervising environmentalist. “It takes a lot to feed 50 or 60 thousand people.”

And now, with Super Bowl LII just weeks away, U.S. Bank Stadium is ready for its oh-so-green debut.

Read the full story.

PGA of America Releases First-Ever Social Responsibility Report

PGA

Photo Credit: PGA

Photo Credit: PGA of America

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. – In its first-ever review of the long-term positive impact that Social Responsibility offers to the future of golf, the PGA of America has issued a comprehensive report—“The PGA and Its Members: Bringing Energy to the Game.”

The PGA recognizes the critical need to tell the story of the industry’s sustainability successes and challenges. With many young families and Millennials growing increasingly interested in companies that have a true social conscience, the report highlights success stories of how the PGA of America is achieving its strategic mission to “serve the Member and grow the game.” This is accomplished by reaching out to diverse audiences to expand participation; developing the workforce to reflect the demographics of our country; and ensuring environmental sustainability.

Developed with sustainability consultancy Environmental Resources Management (ERM), the report was spurred in part through a partnership with Constellation, the PGA’s Official Energy Provider and Sustainability Partner. The study is designed to attract future partnerships and talent that further the PGA and its mission, while showcasing best practices and case studies.

“Social responsibility is intrinsically linked to the success of the PGA of America and the entire golf industry,” said PGA of America CEO Pete Bevacqua. “Golf has many wide-reaching positive impacts—from the jobs created in local communities to green space and wildlife habitats that golf courses provide to the significant philanthropic contributions our industry delivers to worthy causes. Our future relies on how well we can expand these initiatives to new audiences, while injecting new energy into the services we provide to our PGA Professionals, in order to grow the game worldwide.”

In developing the report, ERM conducted a sustainability assessment with PGA Professionals and nearly 30 key industry stakeholders* that defined six key priority areas to develop a long-term vision and strategy for sustainability within the PGA including:

  • Fostering Diversity & Inclusion
  • Engaging the Next Generation
  • Educating the Workforce of Tomorrow
  • Enhancing Lives through Golf
  • Growing the Game around the Globe
  • Improving our Environmental Footprint

As well, the PGA has joined the Green Sports Alliance, which leverages the cultural and market influence of sports to promote healthy, sustainable communities where people live and play. The Alliance brings together venue operators, sports team executives and environmental scientists to exchange information about better practices and develop solutions to their environmental challenges that are cost-competitive and innovative. The information gathered is to gain a better understanding of how sporting events can be performed in an environmentally sensitive manner.

“Constellation is proud of the progress we’ve made in partnership with PGA of America in reducing the environmental footprint of the game of golf and raising awareness of responsible energy use among its Members,” said Joe Nigro, CEO of Constellation. “We congratulate them on this groundbreaking new report and look forward to continuing to work together toward a more sustainable future.”

To view “The PGA and Its Members: Bringing Energy to the Game” report, please visit PGAImpact.org.

*Study participants: PGA of America leadership, PGA Professionals, PGA Section Executive Directors, PGA partners, golf course management companies, United States Golf Association (USGA), Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA) and Environmental Institute for Golf (EIFG).

SPORTS MEMBERS INCLUDE...
403
TOTAL SPORTS MEMBERS
193
TEAMS
194
VENUES
16
LEAGUES