CHICAGO: Johnson & Johnson, the healthcare giant, is reaping the rewards from pursuing partnerships that are "smart", "strategic" and "able to scale".

Lisa Dreeke, director/integrated marketing of the company's global marketing group, outlined its priorities in this space while speaking at IEG's 31st Annual Sponsorship Conference in Chicago.

She told delegates at the event that the major affiliations of greatest interest had the potential to cross borders. (For more, including details of the firm's "head, heart, hands, health" partnership model, read Warc's exclusive report: How 4-H inspired Johnson & Johnson's sponsorship model.)

"Partnerships need to be smart; they need to be strategic; they must be able to scale. That's so important for us," Dreeke said.

"We're a large multinational company that's also decentralised. We need to find programmes that scale."

One example of this theory being translated into practice relates to Johnson & Johnson becoming the first official healthcare partner of the FIFA World Cup.

This tie-up will begin with the 2014 competition in Brazil, where it is to be activated with a range of on-the-ground exercises, including a huge blood-donation drive.

A wider marketing programme, and brand-specific advertising campaigns for products such as Listerine mouthwash, will also bring this sponsorship property to life.

"We're working with FIFA to strategically cement our brand as committed to care at all levels, from healing bodies to healing societies," said Dreeke.

"Partnering with sports is one of the oldest forms of partnership, and it remains a smart partnership – reason being, fan networks have exploded with digital, social and community."

Another initiative with international relevance is Global Motherhood, where Johnson & Johnson has worked with online media group the Huffington Post and various non-governmental organisations.

The stream of digital content at the heart of this platform – which is based around female empowerment – received 650,000 views in its first 24 hours alone.

"Not only did our NGO partners win big, but we won big, too," said Dreeke.

Data sourced from Warc