Sponsorship Audience Data Hack
If there’s one lesson that I hope to impart to you when reading this blog, it’s that good audience data is the foundation of a successful sponsorship program.
The problem though is that a lot of sponsorship seekers, especially those doing this for the first time, have no idea how to procure said audience data.
This has become enough of a recurring issue that I decided there must be a simple solution for these first-time sponsorship seekers.
And sure, enough, there was, and it’s my sponsorship audience data hack.
That’s right, just like you can hack just about anything and everything these days, you can hack your sponsorship audience data as well.
I’ll tell you how ahead, so check it out!
Here’s My Free Sponsorship Audience Data Hack
Do you have a LinkedIn profile? According to Statista, in 2022, 66.8 million people do.
Okay, you’re probably wondering. What does LinkedIn have to do with my super-cool free sponsorship audience data hack?
A lot, so make sure you have a profile!
Once you do, here are the steps to follow.
Step 1 – Sign Up for a LinkedIn Ads Account
I said this hack was free, but you at least need a LinkedIn Ads account. Don’t worry, you don’t have to create any ads or run them.
If you don’t already have a LinkedIn Ads account, it’s easy to make one.
Go to your profile and look at the top of the page. You should see the area to set up the Campaign Manager.
First, you have to click on the button marked Work. Then, in LinkedIn Business Services, select Marketing Solutions.
Choosing that option takes you to a landing page where you can create an advertisement. As I said, you don’t have to do that. You just want to get into the Campaign Manager.
Step 2 – Use the LinkedIn Insight Tag
Next, you have to activate a feature known as the LinkedIn Insight Tag.
When in use, you’ll be able to review the website user’s timestamp, browser characteristics, device characteristics, IP address, referrer, and which URL(s) on your site they visited.
You’re not receiving personal information on your users, and LinkedIn makes it very clear that that’s the case. Even the IP addresses are hashed or truncated.
A week after the Insight Tag generates the direct identifiers of your website users, they’re removed and replaced with data pseudonyms. The pseudonyms are available for 180 days and are then deleted.
According to LinkedIn, using the Insight Tag is fast and easy to install and will not slow down your website, so you won’t have to worry about pesky performance reductions.
Now, when I decided to use this data hack, I had my web developer add the tracking pixel for me. You might be able to do that, or you could decide to place the Insight Tag pixel yourself.
For those in the latter camp, here’s how you do it.
First, generate the Insight Tag code. Copy the whole code. If your browser uses curly quotation marks rather than straight ones, then replace all the quotation marks with straight quotations.
Then click the option I’m done.
Then check your Insight Tag settings and you should be able to see your domain. That indicates the Insight Tag is working.
Step 3 – Wait Several Weeks
The LinkedIn Insight Tag will begin producing information about your audience immediately. You need more than a couple of hours or a couple of days’ worth of data, though.
Ideally, you want to allow at least several weeks to elapse. Then check back and see all the data the Insight Tag produced!
What Kind of Audience Data Can You Get By Using My Hack?
Pretty easy, right? And, as I promised, this avenue of gathering audience data is completely free. It’s also hands-off enough that you can busy yourself with other areas of your sponsorship program for a couple of weeks until you have some data.
What kind of data will the LinkedIn Insight Tag produce? Let’s take a closer look.
The Insight Tag can tell you the kinds of industries your audience members work in, which is highly valuable information that will help you segment your audience into groups.
LinkedIn will produce this information in chart format, organizing the industries from the most prevalent to the least.
There’s also a handy column that tells you the amount of change in website visitors in that industry over a selected time period, which is represented as a percentage.
Having this kind of data available makes it very easy for you to create customer avatars or personas based solely on an audience member’s job responsibilities.
Job functions are great and all, but they don’t paint the full picture of your audience’s respective occupations. Well, worry not, as LinkedIn can tell you the job titles of your audience as well.
Some of the job titles you might see include founder, CEO, vice president, marketing specialist, marketing manager, consultant, director of development, executive director, or owner.
This kind of data is highly valuable to your sponsorship prospects, as now you can tell them, “well, 30 percent of my audience works in finance at a manager level.”
The reason that sponsors adore such specific data is that they know who their target audience is. When you present the sponsor detailed audience data on a silver platter, it’s so much easier for the sponsor to determine right away whether your customers are part of their target audience.
Is more of your audience in retail, hospitality, or maybe education management?
This is yet another area that you will no longer have to guess at. LinkedIn will provide a detailed breakdown of which industries your audience slots into.
As has been the case with the other categories, all the data is organized by the most populated industries versus the least so.
Already, you have three important data points on your audiences’ respective jobs just by using LinkedIn. Let’s see what else you can discover.
Does most of your audience skew younger as first-time career people getting a professional start or are they more senior-level management and executives? LinkedIn will categorize your audience according to their seniority, which I think is pretty cool.
If you’re a bricks-and-mortar business or organization, then you probably already have a good idea of where your audience lives, but for online businesses, your audience could be scattered all over.
LinkedIn will generate current location data, allowing you to toggle between state and city information. This data applies outside of the United States, so for my fellow Canadians as well as other non-Americans, you won’t be left in the dark.
What I like about this data is that it’s more specific than just saying that 30 percent of your audience members are from Nebraska.
You can see that 10 percent are from Omaha, another 10 percent are from Lincoln, five percent live in Nebraska City, and another five percent are from Kearny.
As I’m sure you’re getting the gist of by now, the more niched-down your audience data, the more valuable it is to a prospective sponsor.
There you have it, a handy, free, and convenient audience data hack that utilizes the LinkedIn profile that you probably already have.
I do always recommend issuing an audience survey to generate qualitative and quantitative audience data. The data you generate will be less skewed towards an audience’s occupation and focus also on the brands they use and consume every single day.
For those who can’t do an audience survey at this stage of the sponsorship program though, using this handy audience data hack is certainly better than going into a sponsorship meeting with no audience data at all!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Chris Baylis is the President and CEO of The Sponsorship Collective and a self-confessed sponsorship geek.
After several years as a sponsor (that’s right, the one investing the money!) Chris decided to cross over to the sponsorship sales side where he has personally closed tens of millions of dollars in sponsorship deals. Chris has been on the front lines of multi-million dollar sponsorship agreements and has built and coached teams to do the same.
Chris now spends his time working with clients to value their assets and build strategies that drive sales. An accomplished speaker and international consultant, Chris has helped his clients raise millions in sponsorship dollars.