Don’t worry, Google crawlers. That wasn’t a half-baked effort to stuff keywords into the title of my article. This isn’t a low-quality SEO article that’s riddled with links to Samsung and mentions of the video functionality and auto focus of the Galaxy S5.

Okay, well maybe that paragraph looked a little suspicious, but I promise that everything you read in here is 100% organic. I’m not shilling Samsung products, I’m reporting on the company’s latest marketing location: airport terminals.

While you see ads all over the airport in the forms of posters, banners, and wraps, Samsung advanced traditional advertising by purchasing an entire terminal, London Heathrow’s Terminal 5, to be exact.


In addition to renaming the terminal, Samsung has bought all 172 digital panels, and promises to have signage in the terminal’s baggage and gate areas. Passengers waiting to board their flights will only have one brand message to look at: Samsung’s.

Apple iPhone travelers need not worry, this promotion will only last two weeks.

Benefits of Exclusive Sponsorships

When used correctly, sponsorships can be a major revenue boost for brands – just ask any of the 117 Fortune 500 companies (almost 25%) that are sponsors involved in NASCAR. These fans are incredibly brand-loyal, with 55% of NASCAR fans saying they feel better about a company when they see that it as affiliation or advertising related to the sport. Furthermore, 75% of fans say they consciously choose products of official NASCAR sponsors over competitors. This beats all other sports, including golf (47%), the NFL (36%), and the Olympics (28%).

While people aren’t as loyal to their airport terminals as their favorite NASCAR drivers, there are still benefits to exclusive sponsorships in particular. Most sponsorships come in package deals and are more cost effective than buying standard advertisements. In the case of Terminal Samsung Galaxy S5, Heathrow airport is also altering its website on the Terminal 5 page to have the Samsung logo. That’s another bonus it will have over other brands.

Most sponsorships include social media promotion, discounts on bulk ads, and miscellaneous benefits you might not get had you just bought ad space.

What to Look for in a Corporate Sponsorship

Like choosing a celebrity spokesperson or a non-profit cause to donate to, you need to carefully consider who you form a corporate sponsorship with. While Bud Light makes a great NASCAR sponsor, companies that advocate green living and biking instead of driving would not.

As companies and non-profits approach you to sponsor them, or you seek companies to work with, consider these five questions.

Does the audience match your target demographic? There’s a reason you don’t see a lot of female products advertised at football games.

Does the partnership make sense? It makes sense for skin lotion companies to sponsor outdoor events, as the sun and elements are so damaging, but it wouldn’t make sense for one to sponsor a dog show.

Do the company values align? A company with traditionally conservative values wouldn’t want to partner with a liberal organization. If Chick-fil-A were to sponsor a gay pride parade, both parties would be angry because of the differing values.

Who were previous sponsors and how long did the relationship last? This gives you an idea of sponsor turnover rate and the types of companies that the company appeals to.

Is there any way to make your sponsorship stand out? If you’re one of multiple sponsors, it’s easy to get lost in the crowd. Think like Samsung and brainstorm ways to be unique. These will probably be more expensive, but the exposure is worth it.

From International Terminals to Local Soccer Teams

We cover a lot of successful case studies on this blog, from Pizza Hut’s OkCupid Profile to Chipotle’s Original Hulu Series. While these companies perform on a macro scale, it’s possible to take their lessons and apply them on a local level.

Keep an eye on upcoming festivals or high school teams starting their seasons in your area. Even if you miss the opportunity to get involved this year, you’ll know to prepare and become a major sponsor and household name next year.