Public dislike `intrusive’ TV sponsorship

Broadcast sponsors pursue ever more intricate and longer sponsorship credit sequences at their peril, according to research published next week by The Sponsorship Research Company.

Viewers believe a sponsor’s “intrusion” should be kept at a minimum and pains should be taken to guard against credits resembling conventional advertising, the findings show.

Criticism was levelled at broadcast sponsorships with extended credits, such as Diet Coke’s initial involvement in ITV’s Movie Premieres season.

Qualitative research involving 12 discussion groups was conducted across the UK to gauge public attitudes to TV sponsorship, assess the extent to which sponsors are perceived to influence content and discover the impact of new sponsors.

Sponsorship is viewed as distinct and separate from conventional advertising, the findings show. It is seen as being part of the programme, working in a different way to advertising.

The study also found that sponsorship is seen to “benefit everyone”, and that creativity in sponsorship credits is of secondary importance.

“What’s clear is that creative execution must reflect the common values of the programme and sponsor,” says The Sponsorship Research Company marketing director Graham Saxton.

There was greater scepticism of TV sponsorship when corporations rather than brands were involved, he adds. While this, in part, reflects other activities sponsors did or did not run to support their on-screen association, it also indicates TV sponsorship can be a more effective means of communication for already familiar brands.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and inspiration that will help you develop as a marketer and leader.

Register and receive the best content from the only title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work, so we can make Marketing Week more relevant to you.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team and columnists will ask the biggest questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we will be your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Dedicated to developing your skills and helping you achieve marketing excellence. Find guidance on leadership, professional development and the latest industry jobs.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3711 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here