Making Sponsorship Accountability a Quantifiable Reality

MASB Sponsorship Accountability Series

​​​​The use of sponsorships by marketers has evolved over the past decade or so, according to MASB, the Marketing Accountability Standards Board. MASB has published a series of free articles that share recommendations to improve the accountability of sponsorships, identifying practices across this continuum that improve value.

Once considered an activation tactic, sponsorship has become a strategy to influence specific kinds of consumers as brands support the sports, entertainment and causes important to them. This is clearly reflected in worldwide spending on sponsorships, which reached an estimated $66 billion in 2018, up 74% since 2007.

But sponsorship history is filled with examples of deals of debatable marketing value, forced relationships, and limited ability to determine business impact. While bottom-of-the-purchase-funnel measures (sales) seem easiest, they often overstate the impact of sponsorship due to the implicit assumption only sponsorship resulted in the sale, without regard to the spending and influence of non-sponsorship activities (ex: advertising, price promotions, etc.) that occurred simultaneously.

Many marketers now find themselves on an analytics and insights journey. Moving from media equivalency to understanding how sponsorships help create quality impressions and support mid-funnel marketing objectives is an active project for most. And a very few are even now actively putting in place comparative financial attribution systems. This, in turn, is requiring a movement from reliance only on property-provided data to incorporating independently verified, third-party data into sponsorship processes.

The MASB Sponsorship Accountability Series includes:

Part 1: overview of the current state of sponsorship use and management. 

Part 2: explores the long-term nature of sponsorship relationships and the resulting importance of fit between properties and brands. 

Part 3: establishes the importance of developing the business case for sponsorship as well as contractual considerations. 

Part 4: sets forth best practices in sponsorship stewardship and activation. 

Part 5: the measurement of sponsorships. 

A sixth part will be released next month, following the Super Bowl.

The authors recognize that the sponsorship space will keep evolving as more and more dollars are invested. MASB is actively developing a best practices benchmark tool to independently assess any marketer’s sponsorship approach. If you are a marketer or measurement provider interested in participating, contact

Source: MASB (Marketing Accountability Standards Board)


Categories: Sports-related Business

Tags: accountability, sponsorship, sponsorship activation, sponsorship marketing

Additional Links