Corporate Marketing Partnerships
Corporate Partnerships and Sponsorship is often under-estimated when building indoor attractions or visitor centres. In our experience building purposeful and profitable brands, strong corporate partnerships are an essential and rewarding part of the marketing mix.
(Ben led Corporate Partnerships for Merlin Entertainments New Openings, liaising between the parent LEGO brand, the park and Merlin head office. Under his leadership Merlin enjoyed record sponsorship revenues on the launches of LEGOLAND Japan and Dubai. It was because of this expertise that KidZania sought out 9 Degrees West for help with the London facility).
What is KidZania?
KidZania is an interactive city for children 1-14 combining inspiration, fun and learning through realistic role-play. KidZania’s mission is to enable children to “build a better world“.
KidZania is one of the fastest growing entertainment brands in the world. There are 28 open facilities and 11 under development. As a result, KidZania welcomed nearly 10m visitors in 2019, in 21 countries.
KidZania London hired Ben to refresh their Corporate Partnerships and Sponsorship strategy, and to identify new partners.
Industry partnerships are a fundamental part of KidZania’s business model, providing highly realistic, immersive experiences for children. In order to make the experience realistic, they are built like real stores or in the case of the British Airways Aviation Academy, training academies! Establishments also include the H&M Fashion Recycling Studio and the Nintendo Labo Workshop.
What was the process?
Ben initially conducted a strategic review, identifying a short-list of brands who were likely to have a strong desire for a KidZania partnership. Because of this thorough approach, Ben assembled a list of nearly 600 potential corporate partners. All of these brands share Kidzania’s brand values and belief in the potential of children.
Ben then reinvigorated KidZania’s creative approach, bringing fresh energy and ideas to the pitch development process, encouraging the team to go deeper into the strategy and identity of the potential partner brands.
As a result of Ben’s efforts KidZania London were able to move rapidly into high quality, professionaly managed meetings with some of the biggest names in the corporate world. Results from the first phase of work are extremely encouraging, with positive conversations ongoing with several of the UK’s largest corporations.
What is really exciting about the conversations KidZania are now having with partners is that the full C-suite is involved, especially the teams responsible for environmental, social and corporate governance. Today’s progressive companies are realising that CSR (as it used to be known) is no longer something that sits in the background, but must become an active part of product, service and communications.