One + May 2011 - (Page 46)

> > H I G H -T EC H H U M A N I T Y BY DOUGLAS RUSHKOFF << ADS, SPONSORS AND PATRONS I WATCHED A FRIEND PITCH A CONFERENCE SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITY LAST WEEK. “Gold Sponsors pay US$10,000 and get signage over the stage, a full-page ad in the program and a mention before each keynote,” he explained. “Silver Sponsors pay $5,000 and receive signage on the sides of the stage…” “Excuse me,” interrupted the target VP. “But we were hoping to do something real.” “Pardon?” asked my friend, fumbling through his presentation, utterly flummoxed. “Can’t we sponsor something?” “The after party…” “I meant something real.” Past tense: The sale was lost. “Something we’d want to say we’d done.” My friend said he only had a sales rate card with him, but that he’d talk to the organizers and follow up with her by email, and in so doing, punted away the biggest funding offer he’d ever see. Et voilà, the impact of transparency on business. Companies no longer use their money to create banners to hide behind. They want to create activities and results that they can stand behind and take credit for. They do not want to sponsor your event anymore. They want to sponsor the community and activities that your event supports, and they want to do it in a way that demonstrates their real participation in your world. Traditional sponsorships are not simply outdated; they’re counterproductive. What does ad space around the stage of, say, an advertising conference really mean? That some corporation feels the need to make sure everyone knows it is “central” to what’s going on in that space. And the way to accomplish this is by paying to say so. But do people paying $495 a head to be at a marketing conference feel particularly subsidized by this corporate largess, or do they know, quite consciously, that the money went directly to you organizers? The companies spending the money you’re looking for already get this. Their social media consultants have shown them what earns “likes” on Facebook and what doesn’t. The things that spread online and off—especially through a target community—are those that matter: opportunities, 46 one+ 05.11

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of One + May 2011

One + May 2011
Energy of Many
Meeting Design Goes Mobile
Picking Brains
Ask the Experts
Art of Travel
Web Watch
Radical Co-creation
Engagement + Innovation = Wunderbar
Top Spots
The Business of Being Social
Safety in Numbers
Ads, Sponsors and Patrons
Should I Stay or Should I Go?
It’s Getting Better All the Time
Blame It on Rio
Ride Free
Learning How the Brain Learns
Just Face It
Becoming Mindful with Your Meetings
Group Think
The Mesh Meeting
Your Community
Making a Difference
Until We Meet Again

One + May 2011