A Event Planners Guide To Securing Event Sponsorship
Conferences, gala’s, and special events take a significant amount of time, energy, and finances to make happen. In some cases it might be necessary to build a sponsorship program to help you reach your financial goals to host the event you or your client are imagining.
This certainly isn’t a new idea as sponsorships have been around for a long time however we have seen the good, the bad, and the ugly when it comes to finding sponsors to support.
Know Your Audience
When it comes to targeting the right sponsors, having audience data and demographics are going to be key. We recommend putting those demographics into easy to read slides with charts for ease of consumption. Targeting and meeting with sponsors that are in alignment with your audience and brand are going to greatly increase your impact.
Present The Right Options
When it comes to approaching and asking for sponsors we have found the importance of selling the right option to the right sponsors. When it comes to options, know that every aspect of your event should be available to sponsor. Everything from pens, tables, meals, breakouts, Wi-Fi, charging stations, awards and so on. A great example of this is we recently had a client approach their local power supplier to sponsor the charging stations. Not only does this enhance the guest experience it gives the sponsor an option to support something they're fluent in - furthering their mission while helping you reach yours.
Lead With Value…and Deliver On That.
One of the biggest sins we’ve seen that usually doesn’t end well for anyone is a sponsor being promised one thing and then something else being delivered. This is a case where not to overpromise and underdeliver. Sponsors can, and will, be some of your biggest advocates and potentially become partners for years to come - don’t ruin that opportunity by making a critical promise and not delivering on it.
In our experience here are some ways to deliver value to your sponsors:
If possible make sure to add sponsors' logos and links to pre-event marketing materials such as email blasts, newsletters, social media posts, or mailers. We’ve seen a huge uptick in using QR codes to lead to a sponsors page.
Offer sponsors to have their logos printed on banners and other event specific materials like directional signage, booklets, pens, paper, menus, table tents and pamphlets. These additions can enhance the guest experience while allowing you to spend your conference budget on things like creative and production services.
During pre/post show times, breaks, and meals have a rolling slide deck appear on screens around the venue.
Include your sponsors in your announcements and show script, while adding a visual support on screens.
Create, or include, an expo space where sponsors are able to set up booths and engage with your audience during breaks. Driving value for the sponsors to connect while opening the networking opportunities up for your attendees.
By pursuing sponsors to reduce conference expenditures, remember that every audience has value. Most companies have budgets and funds set aside to partner with organizations who align with their brand. Bringing a consistent approach with a creative strategy you are sure to create a win-win partnership.
Ready to tap into your events potential? Contact us here.