CultureLIVE, a two-day conference-cum-workshop on ‘Festivals & Events Management’, saw the who’s who of India’s events industry share best practices, debate current issues, and discuss the future trends for inclusive and sustainable growth of the industry. The event, which was held in the Capital on May 8 and 9, was hosted by the Indian School of Events & Entertainment in association with IIT-Delhi.
Media partnerships and events sponsorships have become an important part in brands’ marketing mix as also media houses’ engagement with brands. Annurag Batra, Chairman and Editor-in-Chief, exchange4media Group, shared how his media house has been conducting more than 30 B2B events annually to create ‘content’ and revenues. Batra further shared that he receives over 2,000 proposals every year to partner events, and has moved from pure ‘barter’ to ‘revenue’ model for such partnership requests.
Speaking on how event agencies should approach media houses for partnerships, Neeraj Sanan, Head of Research and Marketing, MCSS (ABP Group), stressed that media partnerships only work in ‘exclusivity’ environments, and where sponsors can further leverage the power and reach of media partners in association with the events.
Vivek Malhotra, Head of Marketing, TV Today Networks seconded his thought to state that the classic difference between televised and non-televised events is the ‘reach’, which directly impacts the sponsorship values for the event brands. He also spoke on how differentiated and unique content is always a good offer for media houses to partner events.
Sudeep Narayan, Marketing & PR Director, Volvo Auto India and Shubhodip Pal, CMO, Micromax Mobiles provided the marketers’ perspective on ‘Decoding Rocket Science behind Event Sponsorships’. Both marketers unanimously agreed that transparency on content and cost is most important when seeking sponsorships. They emphasised that instead of selling a packaged content, event agencies should approach brands with offers to co-create and partner event ideas from a long-term perspective. Brands will then try to fit this event as a ‘media’ in itself in their long-term media-strategy.
Referring to Sunburn as an example, Pal cited the approach Percept took to partner them. Karan Singh, CEO, Sunburn-Percept, agreed that it is about making sponsors part of the organising committee – from curating content to planning marketing. According to Singh, “Building an event IP is all about starting small and moving steady with a clear vision on what you want to be.” He further said, “It’s very important for an event organiser to lobby and build relationships with state governments and venue owners to produce a large-format event that is consistent in its deliveries.”
The speakers felt that if Indian event organisers can create a focused content-led propositions, everyone is looking forward to partner them, including government, media, brands, and also the audiences.