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Automotive Sponsorships and Lifestyle Marketing - US - March 2010

Automotive sponsorships can drive sales, according to Mintel’s exclusive consumer research, so automakers are advised to leverage this marketing tactic to their advantage. However, doing so requires an understanding of what appeals to consumers.

Some of the topics covered in this report include:

  • What kinds of sponsorships most influence purchasing decisions
  • Which demographics are most responsive to auto sponsorships
  • An in-depth examination of six different sponsorship segments: sporting events, educational, product placement, non-sports entertainment, title rights to buildings and other
  • Examples and analysis of sponsorships by brand leaders, including Ford, Mercedes-Benz, Acura and others
  • Examples and analysis of cutting-edge lifestyle marketing efforts by automakers
  • Numerous suggestions for sponsorships and related marketing opportunities

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Table of contents

  1. Scope and Themes

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
        • Data sources
          • Consumer survey data
            • Abbreviations and terms
              • Abbreviations
                • Terms
                • Executive Summary

                  • Snapshot of the auto industry
                    • Sponsorships can drive purchase decisions
                      • Types of sponsorships
                        • Sporting events: Sponsorship of televised sporting events, collegiate, high school, and other.
                          • Educational: Scholarships, grants, and partnerships between automakers.
                            • Product placement (in movies and on TV).
                              • Non-sports entertainment: Sponsorship of concerts, cultural events, and other similar activities.
                                • Title rights to buildings
                                  • Other (sponsorships and similar activities that fall outside the description of the above segments)
                                    • Insights and opportunities: Sponsorships
                                      • Insights and opportunities: Lifestyle marketing
                                        • A minority use incentives
                                          • Attitudes towards sponsorships of events
                                            • Attitudes towards non-sports events
                                              • Attitudes towards product placement
                                                • Attitudes towards other types of sponsorships
                                                • Insights and Opportunities: Sponsorships

                                                  • Not all sponsorships are created equal
                                                    • Figure 1: Acceptability of sponsorships of sporting events at selected venues, December 2009
                                                  • How to influence purchases
                                                      • Figure 2: Factors influencing automotive purchase, by household income, December 2009
                                                    • A different look at sponsorship opportunities
                                                      • Cause marketing calls
                                                      • Insights and Opportunities: Lifestyle Marketing

                                                        • Elements of a successful lifestyle marketing initiative
                                                          • Opportunities wait in that empty warehouse
                                                            • Leverage existing content
                                                              • Target LGBTs
                                                                • Marketing tactics
                                                                  • Product tie-ins
                                                                    • Guerrilla marketing for the urban jungle
                                                                    • Inspire Insights

                                                                        • Trend: Media Evolution
                                                                          • Innovation is usurping tradition, media changes are unavoidable
                                                                            • Implications for the automotive industry
                                                                            • Competitive Context

                                                                              • Recession causing consumers to stay home
                                                                                  • Figure 3: Total tickets sold for the top 100 concert tours, 2003-08
                                                                              • Segment Activity—Sporting Events

                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                  • NASCAR still in the fast lane… but for how long?
                                                                                    • Other racing series
                                                                                      • Other sponsorships
                                                                                        • Chevrolet goes for the gold
                                                                                          • Sponsorships targeting the affluent
                                                                                            • At the college level
                                                                                              • Honda steps up to the plate
                                                                                              • Segment Performance—Educational, Non-Sports

                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                  • Partnerships typically help the disadvantaged
                                                                                                    • Sponsorships for higher education
                                                                                                    • Segment Performance—Product Placement

                                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                                        • Overview of product placement
                                                                                                          • Figure 4: Television shows with most product placements, 2009
                                                                                                        • The debate over the effectiveness of product placement
                                                                                                          • The future of product placement
                                                                                                            • Ford is showing at the movies
                                                                                                                • Figure 5: Leading product placements in movies, 2009-10
                                                                                                              • Ford starring on TV
                                                                                                              • Segment Performance—Non-sports Entertainment Events

                                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                                  • Let them entertain us
                                                                                                                    • Pop
                                                                                                                      • Classical
                                                                                                                        • Jazz
                                                                                                                          • Film
                                                                                                                          • Segment Performance—Title Rights to Building Venues

                                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                                              • Automakers have few title rights
                                                                                                                                • Figure 6: Largest stadium naming rights by auto companies, 2010
                                                                                                                                • Figure 7: 10 largest stadium naming rights, 2010
                                                                                                                            • Segment Performance—Other

                                                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                                                • Liking these programs
                                                                                                                                  • Taking risks at Chrysler…
                                                                                                                                    • … and at Honda and Toyota
                                                                                                                                    • Market Drivers

                                                                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                                                                        • The recession’s effect on America
                                                                                                                                          • Car sales fall with the economy
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 8: Sales of cars and light trucks, 2008-09
                                                                                                                                            • Bankruptcies put the brakes on ad spends
                                                                                                                                              • Cash for Clunkers and a mending economy restart sales
                                                                                                                                                • Social media gains serious traction
                                                                                                                                                • Lifestyle Marketing

                                                                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                                                                    • Philanthropy and partying with Ford
                                                                                                                                                      • Philanthropic efforts
                                                                                                                                                        • Parties
                                                                                                                                                          • Acura sets the pace with lifestyle events
                                                                                                                                                            • Mercedes-Benz ‘styling’ at Fashion Week
                                                                                                                                                              • Prius goes au natural
                                                                                                                                                              • Innovation and Innovators

                                                                                                                                                                • Ford targets 18-24s with innovative efforts
                                                                                                                                                                  • Efforts targeting greens and the socially conscious
                                                                                                                                                                    • Other innovative efforts
                                                                                                                                                                    • Advertising and Promotion

                                                                                                                                                                      • Overview
                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 9: Media spends, by top automakers, 2009
                                                                                                                                                                      • Overview: Online initiatives
                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 10: Online advertising spends, 2008-10
                                                                                                                                                                      • Online initiative: Ford Mustang Unleashed
                                                                                                                                                                        • Online initiative: Dreaming big at Honda
                                                                                                                                                                          • Online initiative: Mazda reigniting joy
                                                                                                                                                                            • Online initiative: Targeting young adults at Nissan
                                                                                                                                                                              • Other interesting online initiatives
                                                                                                                                                                              • Promotional Elements Influencing Automotive Purchase

                                                                                                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Male respondents more influenced by where vehicle is made, and automakers who support soldiers and the local economy
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 11: Promotional elements influencing automotive purchase, by gender, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Respondents with household incomes $75K-$99.9K influenced to purchase by support of local economy and soldiers
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 12: Promotional elements influencing automotive purchase, by household income, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                • Incentive Participation

                                                                                                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Men more likely take advantage of branded freebies, coupons, etc.
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 13: Incentives taken advantage of, by gender, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Younger Americans, notably 18-24s, are more likely to take branded freebies
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 14: Incentives taken advantage of, by age, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Households with incomes of $75K+ more likely to take advantage of incentives
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 15: Incentives taken advantage of, by household income, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Sponsored Event Participation

                                                                                                                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Men three times more than likely women to watch mini-movies
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 16: Event participation, by gender, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Social media, mini-movies, appeal to 18-24s
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 17: Event participation, by age, December, 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Attitudes towards Sponsorships of Sporting Events

                                                                                                                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Male respondents slightly more accepting of sponsorship of sporting events
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 18: Attitudes towards sponsorships of sporting events at selected venues, by gender, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                            • Respondents 18-24 more accepting of sponsorships of sporting events
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 19: Attitudes towards sponsorships of sporting events at selected venues, by age, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                            • Respondents with household incomes of $75K+ more likely to participate in social promotions
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 20: Event participation, by household income, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Attitudes towards Sponsorships of Non-sporting School and College Events

                                                                                                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Male respondents more accepting than females of sponsorship of non-sporting events
                                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 21: Attitudes towards sponsorships of non-sporting events at high schools and colleges, by gender, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Respondents 18-24s more accepting of non-sporting sponsorships
                                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 22: Attitudes towards sponsorships of non-sporting events at high schools and colleges, by age, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                            • Attitudes towards Product Placement

                                                                                                                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                                • Half of respondents accept product placement in adult films
                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 23: Attitudes towards product placement, by gender, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                • 18-24s more accepting than 35+s of product placements in movies for adults
                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 24: Attitudes towards product placement, by age, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Attitudes towards Sponsorship of Non-sports Entertainment Events

                                                                                                                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Men slightly more accepting than women of sponsorship of non-sports entertainment
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 25: Attitudes towards sponsorships of non-sports entertainment events at selected venues, by gender, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Respondents 18-24 more accepting than 45+s of movie commercials, tour sponsorships, etc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 26: Attitudes towards sponsorships of non-sports entertainment events at selected venues, by age, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                • Attitudes towards Title Rights to Building Venues

                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Six in 10 respondents find title rights acceptable
                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 27: Attitudes towards title rights to stadiums, arenas and ballparks, by age, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Households earning <$50K+ are less accepting of title rights
                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 28: Attitudes towards title rights to stadiums, arenas and ballparks, by household income, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Attitudes towards Other Types of Sponsorship

                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Gender doesn’t play a significant role in attitudes towards social justice campaigns
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 29: Attitudes towards other sponsorships, by gender, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Young adults more accepting of social justice campaigns than those 25+
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 30: Attitudes towards other sponsorships, by age, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Respondents with household incomes of $100K+ less accepting of social justice campaigns
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 31: Attitudes towards other sponsorships, by household income, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Impact of Race and Hispanic Origin

                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Blacks and Hispanics more accepting of sports sponsorships
                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 32: Attitudes towards sponsorships of sporting events at selected venues, by race/hispanic origin, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Black respondents influenced by where vehicle is made
                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 33: Promotional elements influencing automotive purchase, by race/hispanic origin, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Asians more likely to take advantage of coupons, gift certificates, etc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 34: Incentives taken advantage of, by race/hispanic origin, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Cluster Analysis

                                                                                                                                                                                                          • All-American activists
                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Characteristics
                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Opportunity
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Unincentives
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Characteristics
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Opportunity
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Uneventfuls
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Characteristics
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Opportunity
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Cluster characteristics:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 35: Vehicle purchaser clusters, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 36: Live entertainment events attended, by vehicle purchaser clusters, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 37: Promotional elements influencing car purchase by vehicle purchaser clusters, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 38: Acceptability of sponsorship for live entertainment events, by vehicle purchaser clusters, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 39: Incentives taken advantage of, by vehicle purchaser clusters, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 40: Event participation, by vehicle purchaser clusters, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Cluster demographics:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 41: Vehicle purchaser clusters, by gender, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 42: Vehicle purchaser clusters, by age group, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 43: Vehicle purchaser clusters, by household income group, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 44: Vehicle purchaser clusters, by race, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 45: Vehicle purchaser clusters, by Hispanic origin, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Cluster methodology
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Appendix: Other Useful Consumer Tables

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Respondents with household incomes of $75K+ more accepting of product placement in movies for children
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 46: Attitudes towards product placement in children’s movies, by household income, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Respondents 55-64 more influenced by where vehicle is made
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 47: Promotional elements influencing automotive purchase, by age, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Commercials before movies okay with blacks, Asians
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 48: Attitudes towards sponsorships of non-sports entertainment events at selected venues, by race/Hispanic origin, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Asians more likely to watch online mini-movies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 49: Event participation, by race/Hispanic origin, December 2009
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Appendix: Trade Associations

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Companies Covered

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Alliance Of Automobile Manufacturers, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • AMR Corporation (American Airlines)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Audi of America Inc
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Automotive Oil Change Association (AOCA)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Automotive Trade Association Executives (ATAE)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Bank of America Corporation
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • BMW of North America, LLC
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Calvin Klein, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Chrysler LLC
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Coca-Cola Company (The) (USA)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Connected Vehicle Trade Association (CVA)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Facebook, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Federal Communications Commission (FCC)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Flickr
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Ford Motor Company (USA)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Google, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Greenfield Online
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Honda Motor Co., Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Hyundai Motor America
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation International (JDRF)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Kia Motors Corporation
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Krispy Kreme Doughnuts Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Land Rover North America, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Major League Baseball
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Mazda North American Operations
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Mercedes-Benz USA
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • National Association of Realtors (NAR)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • National Basketball Association
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • National Football League Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • National Independent Automobile Dealership Association (NIADA)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Netflix, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Nissan North America, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Pepsi-Cola North America
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Toyota Motor Corporation USA
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • U.S. Department of Transportation
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Volkswagen of America, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Walmart Stores (USA)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Wells Fargo & Company
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • YouTube, Inc.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Automotive Sponsorships and Lifestyle Marketing - US - March 2010

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