Everybody these days enjoys a good Meme. But the last thing you want, is for your sponsorship to become one.

Today it is easier than ever for people to make your sponsorship go viral for all the wrong reasons. Here are four simple tips (and cringeworthy examples) to help you ensure that your sponsorship doesn’t get turned into a meme.

Quick Tip #4 – Check your message. If you are going to drop millions on a superbowl commercial, print ad, or sponsorship, be sure that you aren’t missing the mark with your message. Evoking emotion or shocking your audience with your message is not always a good idea.

Nationwide’s 2015 Super Bowl Commercial went viral when viewers were shocked by their message regarding childhood death.

Stirring emotions at sports events by SF AppWorks

Quick Tip #3 – Placement. Placement. Placement. Before shelling out cash to have your name or logo plastered in a highly visable location, do some recon. Having your ad placed next to something that contradicts your message, or turns it into an inuendo, is the fastest way to become a meme.

Yahoo’s poor logo placement caused a stir when people noticed the outfield section number next to it. (For those of you who live under a rock, HTTP 404 Not Found Error means that the webpage you were trying to reach could not be found on the server.)

Improving sports sponsorship profitability with SF AppWorks

Quick Tip #2 – Vet your spokesperson. Before signing a contract with an athlete, make sure that the person you chose not only upholds your company’s morals and values, but also fits into your campaign.

Buick learned this lesson when the people of the internet were all too happy to point out that the car with enough room for Shaq, did not have enough room for Shaq. This being the literal definition of a spokesperson not fitting a campaign.

How to gain profitability with sports sponsorship by SF AppWorks

Quick Tip #1 – Timing is everything. Before activating your sponsorship, be sure that you won’t accidentally be putting your brand in the middle of an unsavory situation.

CoverGirl’s #GAMEFACE Campaign became a PR nightmare after it was given a touch up and some additional text.

Tips for a successful sports sponsorship with SF AppWorks

In short, by doing a little bit of research and using a pinch of common sense, you can avoid a campaign backfire.

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