California Life had the privilege of interviewing Scott Tilton, who turned his passion for Motocross into starting the leading sports sponsorship platform Hookit.
When Tilton first started the company back in 2001, it was called Sponsor House. The original platform was helping connect amateur athletes with potential sponsors. In 2010, the company decided to change their name to Hookit after their clients were repeatedly saying, “You guys hooked me up!”
The essential function of Hookit is to improve global sponsorship effectiveness by providing the most comprehensive, trusted source of intelligent data. Hookit helps brands maximize sponsorship investments, identify new partnership opportunities, and empower influencers and sports properties to prove and increase their value to sponsors. As content consumption migrates from TV to digital, a vast amount of sponsorship value goes unmeasured.
Hookit takes a deeper look into the data set. The whole business is focused around sponsorship analytics, working with global brands to really understand the effectiveness of their athlete, team, and league investments.
Right now, their main focus is social media. When Hookit first started in 2001, social media did not exist. But as the company grew over the first ten years, so did this platform. With the rise of MySpace, then Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and more, athletes started to build massive followings on social media. Hookit recognized its importance to the sponsorship equation.
Hookit focuses their efforts on how to aggregate data from social media to help show and demonstrate the value of these athletes, teams, and leagues to brands. Unlike television ratings, Hookit tracks how many followers an athlete has, how much engagement they generate, and specifically how they are promoting individual brands. It’s more granular than a generic rating and more specific to how a particular partner is benefiting a brand.
Working with brands like Vans, Hookit takes a completely data-driven approach to looking at different partners and asserts. They try to leverage the data to get better ROI and effectiveness out of each one of these partnerships. Recognizing that the industry is evolving, Hookit is constantly using data to make sponsorships more effective.