Burson creates brand sponsorship specialty

NEW YORK: Burson-Marsteller has launched the "Fan Experience" offering to help brands interact with consumers through sponsorships.

NEW YORK: Burson-Marsteller has launched the “Fan Experience” offering to help brands interact with consumers through sponsorships.

The agency's US consumer and brand marketing practice has been developing the practice for nearly a year.

It will help brands “become a natural, organic part of the culture of the fan,” said Jason Teitler, managing director of Burson's consumer and brand marketing division. “The whole idea is to help our clients reach their target audience in ways that are much more meaningful.”

A core team of 15 staffers will work on Fan Experience efforts, with the goal of engaging with consumers and making arts, sports, culture, and entertainment sponsorship and endorsement deals more relevant to them, he added. Burson is only offering the specialty in the US, but it could expand it internationally if successful.

The agency has created consumer-targeted activities for insurance company MetLife, which recently struck a deal to sponsor the home stadium of the National Football League's New York Giants and Jets.

The firm created a Halloween event for MetLife at Manhattan's Public School 19, where Giants' defensive end Justin Tuck read It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown to a group of second-grade students. Charlie Brown is MetLife's mascot.

Tuck promoted healthy snacking during the Halloween season, and MetLife announced a $500,000 donation to Children's Health Fund to support oral health.

Burson also helped MetLife interact with fans through ticket giveaways and special item deliveries that consumers “normally wouldn't get walking through the doors of MetLife stadium,” said Teitler.

He explained that it's important for clients to develop relevant sponsorship and endorsement programs to cut through the “distractions” of smartphones and other technologies.

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