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A PERTH company has developed a system it claims will maximise returns from sponsorships.

The system created by Sponsorcare Management Services, a division of Vision Events Management, walks clients through every stage of the sponsorship process.

Sponsorcare managing director Peter Hesketh said by the end of a project the client should know exactly what they were getting from the sponsorship.

“Our research found a lot of companies don’t have the skills to drive sponsorship to the ultimate,” Mr Hesketh said. “They don’t know how to measure sponsorship.

“Gone are the days when a sign and a corporate box are enough. Preferences still come into play when deciding to sponsor an event, but those preferences have to pay.”

Sponsorcare executive director Alan Melchert said WA was at the leading edge of some of the sponsorship issues in Australia.

“I believe in WA the sponsorship market is going to grow rapidly,” Mr Melchert said.

“Ever since the America’s Cup people here have seen the value of getting exposure through sponsorship. Sport has done well. Art culture and music are in demand.

“But there are dangers in the market – such as the Olympic Games taking a lot of dollars that would normally be spent in other areas – and a lot of decisions are made in the eastern states.”

Mr Melchert said Sponsorcare helped companies with the contractual side of sponsorship and helped educate them to manage sponsorship properly.

“Plus we give executives and staff ownership of the sponsorship,” he said.

Mr Hesketh said there was often initial reticence from a company’s marketing department when Sponsorcare became involved.

“They think we’re coming in to tell them how to do their job,” he said. “But when they see the system, they realise it makes them look better.”

Mr Hesketh said companies chased events that attracted prospective customers for their products.

“Business sponsorships such as trade shows are probably the easiest to manage,” he said.

Often at trade shows a company can get an idea of the value of their sponsorship from the sales they make.

“Sport is different,” Mr Hesketh said. “People going to the game are not necessarily going to be a sponsor’s market. The flow on effect comes later on.

“Culture and the arts is different again. It shows the sponsor has sophistication. Sport probably shows the competitiveness of the company.”

Mr Hesketh said while cultural events often drew fewer people than sporting events, the attendees were usually more affluent.

Mr Melchert said anything could be sponsored.

“That’s why there’s a growing market in naming rights,” he said.

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