Last Friday, I was fortunate to attend a speech given by an executive from the NBA. The focus of the talk was discussing why sports marketing works and team sponsorship efforts. One item he mentioned that resonated with me is the need for team sponsors to activate their sponsorships in order for the effort to be effective.
It is not enough for Jack-in-the-Box to pay to be a “sponsor” to the Golden State Warriors; they need to activate this partnership. In their case, they gave away two free tacos when the Warriors scored over 99 points in a win (ticket holders received a text message about the deal). Individuals showed their text message at participating Jack-in-the Box restaurants, and over 25,000 tacos and subsequent purchases of drinks/food/sides/etc. later, the deal was a major success for the burger company (who was rolling out their new taco offering).
Switch gears to the career search. We all have networks (friends, family, former co-workers, etc.) who are willing to help us, but if we do not activate our network, these individuals can do nothing for us. “Activating” one’s network could look like setting up meetings with your contacts and letting them know what you are looking for, what you can offer and employer, where you are looking, etc. And just as Jack-in-the-Box did not stop after one taco deal, individuals need to nurture their networks to keep them active and alive in order for the networks to be most powerful.
Today, reach out to 3 contacts and reconnect – it is time to activate your network.