Coca-Cola is today announcing its commitment to measure the social value of its sponsorship of London 2012. The announcement follows an 18 month partnership with think tank Demos to create a new sponsorship evaluation tool, to be published today in the report ‘measuring up – the social value of sponsorship’.

The tool developed by Demos is a first of its kind. Unlike traditional models for measuring social value, it allows corporate sponsors to measure the impact of their sponsorship activities for a specific event and has been designed to complement and enhance commercial brand metrics such as ‘reach’ and ‘opportunities to see’.

Demos will apply the new tool for the first time to measure the social value of Coca-Cola’s sponsorship of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Last year, Demos and Coca-Cola undertook a series of consultation sessions with key stakeholders across charitable, academic, public and corporate sectors in order to understand what a new model for measuring the social value of corporate sponsorship should look like.  

The launch comes as new polling reveals that despite almost half of businesses (48%) spending upwards of £1million per year on sponsorship activity – with a fifth (21%) spending at least £10million - almost two thirds (59%) do not measure their sponsorship activity through social value created.

Of the businesses that do not measure the impact of their sponsorship activity through social value created:

•    A third (34%) attribute this to the fact that there is no structured model for measurement
•    The same number (34%) attributes it to the fact that ascertaining social value is not a priority for the business

Jon Woods, General Manager, Coca-Cola Great Britain & Ireland, said:
“We are using our sponsorship of London 2012 to get people across the country engaged with the Olympic and Paralympic Games.  We’ll enable millions to participate or share in the celebration of London 2012 during the Torch Relay and at Games time via City Celebrations across the UK, ticket promotions, and our consumer experience on the Olympic Park.
 
“But there is much more that we are doing which we believe will deliver social value.   For example, we have chosen over a thousand inspiring people to carry the Olympic Flame via our Future Flames nomination campaign.  We are using our Olympic sponsorship to get more young people active via StreetGames, a charity we are supporting to get 110,000 young people involved in doorstep sport. We are working with LOCOG to ensure London 2012 is the most sustainable Games ever and as part of this have committed to collect all clear plastic waste from Olympic Venues, recycle it and have it back on shelves as new Coke bottles within just six weeks.
 
“These are just some of the ways we believe our sponsorship will create social value.   What we want to do is measure this so we understand it in more detail, which is why we’re piloting this tool with Demos.  Once we understand more about the social value we create, we can learn from our experiences and improve.”

According to Demos, communities are missing out on the benefits of millions of pounds of spending that could be better targeted and the new tool provokes a more informed debate on how to best use the resources of corporate Britain for social good.

Max Wind-Cowie, co-author of the report, said:
“Politics is increasingly concerned with how we can involve business in the Big Society and ensure that capitalism is 'responsible', but we haven't equipped the corporate sector with the tools they need to understand and demonstrate the good that they do.

“This report aims to plug that gap so that we can build a more accurate and less polarised picture of the social value of business.”

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For further information, please contact Blue Rubicon on behalf of Coca-Cola
Sophie Barnard, Katie Gosden: 020 7260 2700 coke@bluerubicon.com or firstname.lastname@bluerubicon.com

Notes to editors

About Coca-Cola and the Olympic Movement
The Coca-Cola Company has been continuously associated with the Olympic Games since 1928 – longer than any other corporate sponsor of the Olympic Movement. Products of The Coca-Cola Company refresh athletes, volunteers, officials and spectators during the Olympic Games. The Coca-Cola Company is the exclusive nonalcoholic beverage provider to the Olympic Games through to 2020.

About Demos
Demos is a think-tank focused on power and politics. Their unique approach gives a voice to people and communities.

Through its high quality and socially responsible research, Demos has established itself as the leading independent think tank in British politics. Their work is driven by the goal of a society populated by free, capable, secure and powerful citizens.

Populus
Between 2nd and 4th March 2012, Populus interviewed over 2,000 GB adults (2,087).

-    A third (30%) recognise that corporate sponsorship has the potential to create lasting social value

-    Three quarters (71%) would feel more positively towards a brand/business if they knew they were having a positive impact on the communities in which their sponsorship activities take place

In the survey of business leaders, Populus interviewed 100 Marketing Directors at companies with at least 2,500 employees between 7th and 14th February 2012.

-    Over half (55%) of businesses questioned consider sponsorship activity as an integral part of their marketing and communications strategy

-    Almost two thirds (59%) of businesses questioned do not measure their sponsorship activity through social value created:
o    A third (35%) of businesses questioned measure their sponsorship activity through traditional brand metrics
o    29% measure their sponsorship activity through qualitative and quantitative stakeholder feedback
o    27% measure sponsorship activity through internal stakeholder feedback
o    A fifth (19%) don’t measure the impact of their sponsorship activity at all