A Tottenham Hotspur director, last week, noted that sponsors will scrutinise how well an organisation manages its own brand, before committing to sponsorship. How important is tight brand management in attracting other commercial partners?

It’s crucial. Sponsorship is about benefit through association. Partners are keen to be linked with you if you’ve got a great brand. We made sure, when we developed the new Tottenham identity, that we kept a clear eye on commercial implications, as well as the sensitivities of fans and the club’s standing in world football.

Richie Hartness, Associate design director, Navy Blue (pictured)

In truth, anyone wanting to attract a partner can benefit from a good personal grooming regime, and brands are no exception – but a successful partnership depends more on the chemistry. I find that West Ham’s magic works for me much more than anything that Spurs could ever offer.

Dana Robertson, Creative director, Identica

I’ve just helped to arrange a sponsorship agreement between two organisations, and it was straightforward, because their aims and culture are similar. They trust each other to act appropriately. Developing shared values is more important than writing 300 pages of brand guidelines.

Tim Rich, writer It’s essential. Commercially, I need the reassurance and security of knowing that you value your intellectual property as much as I value mine. That said, how much do consumers care? As an example of what can go wrong, the cult of celebrity sex and drugs can ‘rock ‘n’ roll’ any brand. Issues such as brand value, brand fit and borrowed or damaged brand equity, however, rarely come up in conversation over TV dinners, pies at half-time, or a tall, skinny, triple-shot, wet latte on the high street.

Richard Crabb, Founder, NVDA

In my view, it’s extremely important. If an organisation shows that it cares about the reputation and presentation of its own brand, then this sends out a clear message that this attitude will, almost certainly, reflect itself throughout its service or product offering to clients and commercial partners. In effect, it’s a demonstration to potential sponsors that their investment will be protected and professionally managed.

Graham Robinson, Joint managing director, GVC Advertising and Design (pictured)

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