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The Future of Live Event Sponsorship

Andy Robertson

The revenue that live event organisers get from corporate sponsorship makes up a significant portion of their overall revenue and is said to be worth $10b globally. Recent research suggests that among media buyers responsible for sponsorship of live music events 25% have paused or ceased spend while 46% have reduced spending in this sector as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. 


Irrespective of any legal wrangling that may be taking place between organisers that have cancelled events and sponsors that had previously committed financial sponsorship the whole event sponsorship sector is going through unprecedented times. Some brands have suffered financially during the COVID-19 pandemic and as a result the first thing to be cut is their advertising and marketing budget.

For the smart and switched on brands there are still opportunities within the live music event market. With live events making a gradual return audience number are down and there is an economic limit to how much an organiser can charge for tickets. Event organisers are therefore more enthusiastic about drumming up commercial sponsorship to help fund their events. For sponsors this means it is a buyer's market, live events are increasing, albeit in a different format, but now many have the potential of reaching a larger audience with most events also being streamed live.

Notwithstanding that since the world went into a lockdown back in March 2020 the emergence of virtual streamed events has been a new channel for corporate sponsors to explore there is still an appetite for live music events with an audience present. It is likely that those corporate sponsors who are still active in the live events scene will benefit from being first to gain exposure with the added benefit of being able to negotiate long term deals with event organisers at excellent rates. 

Corporate sponsors however are not going to just hand out funds to any live event, if sponsorship is a key part of their overall marketing strategy for sure they will be monitoring results closely and determining if they are likely to make a return on their sponsorship investment. For any corporate sponsor that is looking to get involved in emerging live music events in the ‘new normal’ they should consider this sponsorship an investment for the future. They should also look at new and innovative ways to engage with a much-reduced live audience and perhaps focus on how to better engage with the virtual live streamed audience. It's also time for event organisers to step up and work more closely with corporate sponsors to help them achieve their advertising and marketing sponsorship objectives which may not necessarily be measured in just financial terms. 

Data
source Interactive Advertising Bureau.

Using an events management software solution like FestivalPro can help make the planning and running of live music events more efficient with built in functionality to manage every aspect of sponsorship deals. The guys who are responsible for this software have been in the front line of event management for many years and the features are built from that experience and are performance artists themselves. The FestivalPro platform is easy to use and has all the features an event organiser needs to plan and control sponsor contracts.  

Photo by PhotoMIX Company from Pexels

Andy Robertson
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