Everyone’s a Tiger
Who would be your personal sponsors? For me it might be Filson luggage, Mt. Gay Rum and Finn Crisp crackers (Yeah, okay, weird I know). The point is, we suspect that many of us, in the relatively near future, will be answering that question. A few trends are starting to emerge that look destined to bring individual sponsorship down from the celestial level to the everyday. First, social networking meets shopping; e.g. Stylehive. On these networks, friends can share information about what they’re buying and where they see the latest styles. Second: “branding by association”. We’ve talked before about how brands increasingly are coupling with other brands to “reposition” or enhance their perception. (McDonalds selling Newman’s Own). What better than to have a brand placed in the context of an individual we trust. Third , and perhaps most importantly, is how all media is turning personal. Whether it is DVRs making channel “me”, Netflix lists, Pandora personalizing radio or the customization of everything from cars to sneakers the center of gravity is shifting radically to the consumer. Taken together, we think this adds up to an opportunity for the everyman to become a sponsor… and a paid one at that. Everyone from the family geek who tells us what technology to buy to the foodie friend who is always up on the latest restaurants to the Mom who really does know which detergent is best—could be sponsored and even rewarded for showcasing the brands they use most. And why not, historically most advertising mimicked the word of mouth endorsement. Today, technology is actually making it possible.