Putting on an event can be costly — whatever that means to you. Whether you're an individual staging a local music event, a micro-business organizing a networking event or a larger organization planning on spending a seven-figure sum, the costs have to be met somehow.
One solution is to look for sponsorship. Of course, everyone else is after the same thing, so it's vital to make your proposal stand out.
Why should a company choose you to sponsor, rather than another of the many requests they receive? Before you start approaching potential sponsors, you need to be clear about what makes your proposal unique, even if superficially it resembles many others.
Your unique selling point needs to define, in a few sentences:
If you're checking out a company you're thinking of buying from, the way it presents itself is likely to affect how you feel about it. In the same way, your branding — whether that's for an existing company or specifically for the event — will influence potential sponsors.
Your branding will include logos, slogans and the general presentation of all your material, both online and hard copy. Despite being an extra expense, it's worth having this done by a professional, if possible. The outlay is liable to reap rewards.
Don't just pick companies at random and ask them to sponsor you. To have any chance of success, you'll need to do your research and pick out those that may be a good fit.
Read up their mission statements to see how their values mesh with yours. Also, check on their websites what kind of sponsorship they've offered in the past. You may find a recurring theme, and if this seems to fit your event, you may have a match.
It's generally not advisable to cold call potential sponsors — that isn't getting the relationship off to a good start. An email is usually best, or you could approach them through social media.
Incorporate your unique selling point into your email, but be sure each one is personalized. This is especially true for what the sponsor would get out of the deal. Think of ways, for instance, to emphasize that your attendees are potential customers who would be attracted by the sponsorship.
A sponsor can be far more than a bank-roll, important though that is. At best, sponsorship can be a partnership where you're stronger together. Make it clear how you're going to promote your sponsor with your event, and try to engage them with the event itself.
Unless your event is a complete one-off, the sponsorship can become an ongoing relationship. If the experience proves a good one for the sponsor, they may be willing to commit themselves to sponsor your events for a fixed term or on an ongoing basis.
If you need to know anything more about finding sponsorship, don't hesitate to give us a call.