There’s new thinking about sponsorships. Consider how music innovator Will.i.am is helping corporate America figure this out. Instead of becoming a celebrity sponsor lugging around products—or claiming to use them—Will.i.am brought Coca-Cola a concept for recycling called Ekocycle. Instead of Will.i.am endorsing Coke, Coke is endorsing Will.i.am.
Now almost a year old, Ekocycle has several sponsors and more than 170,000 fans on Facebook.