Billboard Touring Conference & Awards 2011 Hub
Billboard Touring Conference & Awards 2011 Hub

The growth and vitality of live music branding and sponsorship partnerships will be reflected in high-profile content and awards at the eighth annual Billboard Touring Conference & Awards, set for Nov. 9-10 at the Roosevelt Hotel in New York City.

The six finalists for the Concert Marketing & Promotion Award reflect the broad nature and quantifiable impact of live music and brand partnerships, as well as the elevated role social networking plays in the integration of these campaigns. The finalists are: the Weezer Memories tour, Driven by State Farm; Dave Matthews Band Caravan/Brita FilterForGood; AT&T/Samsung Present the Keith Urban Get Closer tour; Zac Brown Band Eat and Greets sponsored by Kingsford Charcoal; the Natasha Bedingfield Less Is More tour Presented by Freschetta; and the Taylor Swift Speak Now tour Sponsored by Covergirl.

Don't miss the 8th Annual Billboard Touring Conference & Awards, taking place November 9-10 at the Roosevelt Hotel in New York. Now in its 8th year, the conference features unique programming that informs, educates and provides a forum for promoters, agents, managers, venues, sponsors, merchandisers, ticketing companies and all touring-related businesses about the industry's latest opportunities, current challenges and biggest successes.

The Billboard Concert Marketing & Promotion Award is given to a sponsorship or promotion that benefited the concert industry at large by stimulating attendance to live events, providing value to fans, and promoting the artist and brands involved. The sponsorship or promotion must achieve its marketing goal in a quantifiable way, and pertain to live performances that took place between January and September of this year. The winner is determined by a voting panel of Billboard editors and industry experts, and will be revealed at the Billboard Touring Awards Nov. 10.

Spending in live entertainment marketing is outpacing the general sponsorship sector because live music brings passionate, highly-engaged fans that often turn out to be loyal consumers. But not just any tour, artist, building, or event will do; these must be true partnerships that not only raise the profile of the artists, events and brands, but also target specific consumers and provide added-value to the fans. How these partnerships are best utilized will be the focus of the Sponsorship Buyers and Sellers Weigh In: What We're Looking for in Naming Rights, Tour, Event and Concert Partnerships panel at the Billboard Touring Conference on Nov. 10.

From tour deals to major festivals to key relationships with baby bands, the decision-makers in this dynamic space will tell what it takes to make these partnerships work, how to acquire them, and how content and social media are playing important roles in the decision-making process. The panel will be moderated by Liana Huth, SVP, Partnerships and Events, at MSG Entertainment media property FUSE. Speakers include Jennifer Breithaupt, SVP, Entertainment Marketing, Citi; Kevin Wilson, Music Director, ESPN; Russell Wallach, President, Live Nation Network; Stacey Portnoy, regional marketing manager, Samsung; Marcie Allen, President, MAC Presents; and Matt Frampton, VP, sales, Pitchfork Media. Together, these buyers and sellers represent some of the most innovative and successful programs in the sector, and millions of dollars in annual live event spending.

Huth, known for her no-holds-barred moderating style, will shift her focus from the artist development panel she's hosted at past Billboard Touring Conferences to the sponsorships arena. "We'll be taking a holistic approach which looks at how brands connect with music fans through venues, artists, and the media, and explore how these sponsorships are created so they are authentic to the targeted audience." says Huth.

Sponsorships/Branding/Cause Marketing will be one of three professional tracks that close out the professional content at the conference, along with Digital Marketing/Social Networking, and the first annual Ticketing Forum. Attendees can pick the topic of your choice and ask face-to-face questions with these industry experts in an informal session. For the Branding/Sponsorships/Cause Marketing track, leaders in the field will answer questions and offer ideas as to how to acquire sponsorships, make them work, and find the right fit. Also addressed will be unique branding concepts and fresh takes on cause marketing surrounding the live entertainment business. readers get a special discount to the Billboard Touring Conference if they enter promo code BBBIZNL when registering at