NEWPORT, Rhode Island: Over 75% of Americans think companies that are "stable and profitable" should continue to spend on sponsorship, but almost two-thirds argue firms adversely impacted by the downturn should cut their outlay in this area, according to Performance Research.
Of the 1,005 consumers surveyed by Performance Research, 70% gave "lower approval" scores to US companies than a year ago, and 32% said they are paying "less attention" to sponsorship than last year.
Some 62% of respondents also wanted corporations experiencing "any difficulties" to cut back on sports sponsorship, a total that rose to 68% if the company concerned had received a government bailout.
Just 13% agreed that their perceptions of a company would improve if it sponsored their "favorite sporting event", compared with 26% arguing the opposite.
A fifth of consumers thought sponsorship of cultural events should increase, with the same number arguing the opposite, while 41% said sponsoring charities and not-for-profits would improve their overall opinion of the corporation concerned.
Only 10% agreed they would be more confident in a brand if it sponsored their "favorite sporting event", compared with around a third who disagreed in the case of banks, investment firms and auto makers.
In all, 74% of consumers also suggested that it was important for companies to appear "humble" in the current economic climate.
Data sourced from Performance Research; additional content by WARC staff