Sponsorship’s New Normal
In the midst of a crisis, we believe it is best to focus on helping.
A good way to start is by asking yourself how you are uniquely equipped to assist.
In our case, we are sponsorship and experiential marketing specialists. We advise brands on sponsorship strategy and excel at objectively measuring value from sponsorship properties, (re)structuring deals and optimizing asset mixes, activation plans and more.
Many brands are under heavy time, attention and budget constraints—yet still need guidance on how to deal with their sponsorship properties.
We understand, and recommend one immediate action brands can take: perform value assessments.
Under typical circumstances, the main benefits of a property valuation are clarity and the ability to make more informed investment decisions. Lumency’s valuations help brands realize both efficiencies and savings in sponsorship marketing spend and deliver value rather than being viewed as merely a cost center.
When the dust settles, having a third-party analysis in-hand will undoubtably be beneficial for conversations toward ensuring your brand and your partners are set up for success following the crisis—and that your positive working relationship remains intact. To that end…
We have created several simplified ‘packages’ of our valuation model and services.
While our engagements often require several weeks consisting of a high level of communication and info sharing, the packages are designed to condense delivery time, minimize time and labour commitments, and be more budget-friendly and accessible (featuring fixed prices at discounted rates).
Below is an overview of the packages. In the meantime, please see our blog post on thoughts and recommendations for Managing Your Sponsorship & Experiential Marketing Initiatives During and After the COVID-19 Crisis.
If you have any questions or would like to discuss how Lumency can potentially support your brand through COVID-19, please reach out to
Due to required expediency, these modified services will only be available in English for the time being.
To understand our clients’ needs, we first understand their businesses.
Lumency is a brand side sponsorship, experiential and content marketing consultancy. We work globally from bases in New York, Toronto and Chicago. Established in 1996, we are architected to evolve and built to perform with a client-centric business model. To understand our clients’ needs, we first understand their businesses. Well beyond a service provider to our clients, we see ourselves as a long-term business partner with an insider’s perspective of their business and needs.
We pride ourselves on the client relationships we have built with leading brands.
Our credibility is our greatest asset. We do what we say we will do. Deeds speak.
Through transparency comes trust. Trust is the foundation of real teamwork and of true partnership.
Kaizen is a philosophical notion of continuous improvement. Real, meaningful change in business and in life doesn’t come from great leaps forward, but from doing things a little better each day.
Radical accountability, we each do what needs to be done because it’s what we expect of ourselves and of each other. Owners take results personally.
What We Do
Sponsorship, experiential and content marketing consultancy.
Our strengths lie in sponsorship, experiential and content marketing strategy, measurement, and execution.
We align brands with passion points—sports, arts, music, culture, cause and more. We find and secure the right properties/platforms that are business-case tested, fully activated and measured, with the right assets for the right investment, and in support of brand and commercial strategy. We are obsessive about sweating the details and executing flawlessly, and use storytelling to engage audiences and amplify activations.
We are small enough to be nimble but large enough to deliver industry-leading results, customized to our clients’ distinct and specific needs.
Smarter, More Strategic Sponsorship Decisions
Our full suite of sponsorship consulting capabilities assists brands in making more informed, intentional decisions and derive additional value from their sponsorship marketing investments.
Our comprehensive service offering extends from building a holistic sponsorship strategy to performing one-off property evaluations, all of which can be deployed independently or in unison. Depending on your brand strategy and objectives, sponsorships can represent drastically different value or opportunity, and so our approach is appropriately bespoke.
To best serve our clients in an ever-evolving world, we have also developed a set of sponsorship-specific software tools.
SPONSORSHIP STRATEGY sets the foundation, always drafting behind your brand and commercial strategies.
We advise brands on where to best invest marketing dollars based on a defined set of sponsorship principles, working to determine the properties, audiences, pillars, and platforms to leverage in terms of sponsorship marketing efforts as a way of connecting with a target audience(s), creating an emotional connection and impacting attitudinal and behavioural change.
PASSION POINT ANALYSIS identifies the most meaningful connection points to create emotional context between your brand and your target audience(s).
A proficiency around consumer data and research enables us to determine where your brand’s target audience(s) over-index within specific passion points (sports, music, cause, arts, culture). This informs sponsorship strategy. Uncovering the areas of greatest passion concentration or overlap allows for the development of more effective and target efficient platforms, where you can earn the most attribution and be most resonant.
PROPERTY VALUATION uses business science to assign a commercial value to an individual sponsorship deal.
Clear understanding of value is crucial for informing investment decisions. Considering the brand, industry, market, audience, objectives, a number of tangible and intangible indices, and more, we can generate a single figure—‘the number’—to represent the market value a property and its assets can deliver for your brand. Our customized Spend Lens produces opening, anticipated close and walk-away spend targets.
TrueValue™ is our robust valuation model, customized to each clients’ unique business needs. For more than 20 years, it’s been an industry-accepted standard for determining the category rights market value of sponsorship assets, and forms the foundation of many of our services.
PROPERTY EVALUATION provides a holistic understanding of a property’s value to your specific brand—beyond what’s on paper—and facilitates a clear path forward.
Using valuation as the foundation, comprehensive evaluation provides recommendations and actionable insights on how to increase deal efficiency, setting the stage for more informed negotiations and a consistent approach for future renewals/acquisitions.
Our evaluation package includes important brand reputation and risk considerations around a property including life safety, data security and sustainability.
PORTFOLIO OPTIMIZATION directs the most efficient deployment of resources against the target audience.
To move forward, it is important to know what is currently working—and what is not. We audit your brand’s current portfolio for efficiency, validating individual property performance and setting a roadmap to divest, retain, or acquire new properties.
ACTIVATION PLANNING & EXECUTION ensures we ‘sweat the assets’ across as many connection touchpoints as possible—consumers, trade partners, owned channels etc.
Activation is the bridge between value and ROI. Through this process we prioritize sweating key assets to their maximum potential. To better align our activations, we sit down with the property to first understand their goals and audience, then go deep on our activation plans to drive the most value for the brand.
GOVERNANCE builds decision-making processes around sponsorship marketing to better achieve internal alignment.
Sponsorship decisions are complex, often involving multiple stakeholders. We help brands answer many of the ‘how’ questions—such as how to consider new sponsorship opportunities or seek organization alignment—by adding order and accountability to existing internal processes. With more structure comes clarity, consistency, and faster, better decisions.
MEASUREMENT leverages rigorous methodology to prove out whether or not your sponsorships—and assets—are being successful against defined objectives.
A unified approach to measurement lets us know how a sponsorship/partnership is impacting the business and the brand—and thus what levers to pull. We focus on measuring what matters for your brand, drawing a careful distinction between ‘outputs’ and ‘outcomes,’ and anchoring everything back to your brand’s key objectives and KPIs.
RIGHTS MANAGEMENT cultivates a partnership mindset and ensures sponsorship deals are upheld by all parties.
All agreements require follow-through. In many cases, brands look to us to manage the day to day with their properties. This means ensuring the brand’s commitments to the property are met, value is delivered to the brand and, as partners, we work together with the property to ensure activations are as effective as they can be.
NEGOTIATION STRATEGY ensures we secure the right assets at the right price.
Optimizing your asset mix is difficult without knowing what to ask for, or how. We pre-plan multiple rounds of negotiation to create and leverage flexibility within the negotiation process. We can act as lead, second chair, or support behind the scenes.
MARKET ANALYTICS identifies the most optimal property mix for your brand in a particular market (urban, country, region).
Every market is different. To better understand the intricacies, Lumency commissions in-depth consumer research that, with the additional analytics, supplies brands with actionable intel. By taking a closer look at fan demographics, cross-property engagement, levels of fandom, consumption trends, and other, deeper fan metrics, we can provide guidance on the most optimal mix of properties in a particular market/country, reducing unintended fan duplication and maximizing incremental reach.
Proprietary Software Solutions
TOUCHSTONE™ is an online sponsorship proposal management platform.
Brands are frequently bombarded with sponsorship requests. Touchstone™ helps brands manage this tsunami of sponsorship/partnership/grant/endorsee/community investment proposals that land on their desks. Through our customized-to-your brand online portal that links off of your brand’s website, applicants are asked to input key info which is then compiled in a central database and sorted in an automated review. Based on pre-set criteria, the software can surface certain applications to the brand team, and even auto-generate responses on behalf of the brand. Your brand appears both accessible and responsive.
LOCAL SPONSORSHIP EVALUATION TOOL is an automated software platform that adds rigor, consistency and visibility around local sponsorship opportunity analysis.
This customized, easy-to-use tool is designed to give your local and regional sponsorship decision makers what they need to optimize value from local sponsorship opportunities (under a certain spend threshold, USD ~$40,000). It provides instant analysis of a sponsorship’s value to the brand (based on brand and commercial objectives) and builds in accountability and visibility around local/regional spend. It also helps manage risk and protect business terms by auto-generating a Letter of Agreement between your brand and the local property.
MID-CAP EVALUATION TOOL provides semi-automated evaluation of mid-cap spend, ‘non-complex’ sponsorship opportunities.
Similar to the Local Sponsorship Evaluation Tool, Lumency’s new Mid-Cap Evaluation Tool enables brands to ‘self-use’ our evaluation methodology in the form of a customized, semi-automated software platform. The platform is tuned to sponsorship and community investment properties that lack ‘complexity’ — rights fee spend ≤ USD $250,000 and with no to limited broadcast visible assets.
Experiences That Are Effective & Memorable By Design
We understand the marketing power of positive consumer experiences and what creates memorable moments—and we put that to work for brands.
Our capabilities cover all aspects of experience design, from concept to delivery, leveraging our very own Field Force (Lumency’s network of brand ambassadors) to execute.
Our approach is to focus on being as efficient, authentic and intentional as possible, ensuring all activations are designed toward your brand’s goals, target consumers, and the wider marketing landscape, all executed flawlessly.
EXPERIENTIAL STRATEGY sets your brand’s unique approach to how its experiential marketing efforts can meet objectives and deliver results.
Experiential strategy broadly informs where and how the brand should show up to engage with relevant consumers. As one would expect, strategy and best principles can vary greatly by brand, industry, audience and space. We assist in ensuring engagements are authentic and brand-aligned.
EXPERIENCE DESIGN considers the wider consumer journey to answer the question of ‘what’s the engagement?’
We map the engagement progression from start to finish. We match experiences to a consumer’s mindset—i.e. are they shopping, cheering, or exploring—and show up appropriately.
STAFFING means having the right people representing your brand.
An execution can fall apart if in-person interactions are sub-par. Unlike other agencies, we do not outsource our staffing—our Field Force of over 1,000 people are Lumency employees, who are rigorously recruited, trained and performance managed by our in-house Field Force management team.
PRODUCTION creates all of an activation’s supporting assets.
Creating an experience requires creating an environment. Production involves considering, creating and sourcing the technology, physical assets, signage, etc. that make the experience look and feel consistent. We approach activations with a sustainable mindset, considering materials and environmental impact and what assets can be repurposed or adapted for future use. We consider not just cost of production for assets, but cost to deploy, cost to hold and cost of disposal.
EXECUTION is the delivery of the activation plan.
A plan is only as good as its execution allows. Before we execute, we do our homework and make sure all parties are crystal clear on their roles and are prepared for all likely (and unlikely) scenarios. We make it our job to expect the unexpected. Then we execute, making sure to follow the plan and cover the details, but also stay flexible to adapt to the situation.
DATA CAPTURE & MEASUREMENT gives you the means to understand any given activation’s impact—and follow up with engaged consumers.
As important as the experiences created from the activation is the data gathered, from more traditional KPIs to brand-lift metrics—both qualitative and quantitative. Data allows the brand to track consumers through the journey to drive subsequent conversion, identify behavioral trends and drop-off points, and further fine-tune engagements. Rigorous analysis can reveal the links between outputs and outcomes and tie back to objectives. Our tracking tools, technology and principles ensure we get an accurate read on engagement effectiveness.
Authentic Content That Connects Meaningfully With Your Target
As they say, content is king. We create any type of content on any type of platform to amplify your brand and message.
Our approach focuses on capturing and telling stories, or moments, and to do so in a compelling and authentic way.
We create content designed to supplement other marketing campaigns or efforts (such as activation support), and also offer independent content services.
CONTENT STRATEGY lays out what a brand should be saying—and when, where and how.
Content strategy helps determine your message and tone, and in what channels to show up. We can build content distribution plans and institute measures to ensure consistency of tone and message.
INFLUENCER STRATEGY & MANAGEMENT ensures seamless partnership and execution from talent.
Influencer marketing can be very effective, if you are effective in managing your talent. We correspond directly with influencers, or work through their representatives, to communicate and deliver on expectations. We lay out the content plan and advise on what should be posted and when (all the way down to what hashtags to use).
VIDEO CONTENT engages consumers in a variety of formats.
Video is one of the most powerful marketing mediums. Long-form or short-form, sizzles or social media snippets, we create all kinds of video content for brands and have an in-house team of directors, videographers and producers
to bring your content needs to life. And whether it is digital signage, animated graphics, looped footage, stills, GIFs, instructional how-to videos, or otherwise, the promotional content we create supports and improves your marketing efforts, enhancing experiences, activations or campaigns.
IN-THE-MOMENT CONTENT builds additional buzz around real-time events.
Live streaming has been gaining major traction. Of course, anything broadcast “live” (or nearly live) carries additional risk. We work to ensure any content planned for Facebook Live, Twitter Live, IG TV etc. goes smoothly and delivers results.
How We Partner
We aim to surround ourselves with the very best people to drive ourselves forward.
Being a brand-side consultancy means we represent brands, and only brands. We make a point of not representing properties or talent as a way to preserve our objectivity. When it comes to partners, we aim to surround ourselves with the very best people to drive ourselves forward.
Marketing & Procurement
As a sponsorship marketing consultancy, we are naturally aligned with those directly responsible for a brand’s marketing efforts, whose titles/remits include sponsorship marketing, integrated marketing, brand marketing, media and more.
We are also extremely well equipped to assist marketing procurement personnel who believe in not just reducing costs but finding and adding value. We speak the same language and share the same mindset around a sharp focus on efficiency and optimization.
Agency & Vendor Partners
When it comes to marketing agency partners, we are intentional about being strong collaborators and clear communicators. Our philosophy is to always keep the brand’s best interests in mind, and as such we employ a partnership mindset and make a point of working seamlessly with others.
To supplement our own data and analytics, we also partner with a number of research and intel firms.
We strive to only work with clients who are leaders in their space by market significance, commitment to innovation, or both.
Reason being, leaders behave differently. Leaders want to be challenged, and want to challenge us. Leaders love to measure, and are comfortable shining the light into the dark corners. These attributes, among others, bring our best work and the best versions of ourselves.