5 Innovative Ways to Attract Sponsors to Your Event
Before you even plan to host an event, you might face several questions, including how you’ll fund the event. Unless you work for a well-established company that can provide generous budgets, you’ll have to find funds from outside to finance your events, and the logical solution is to look for sponsors.
However, finding a sponsor is a lot difficult than it sounds. It’s almost like finding a job. You’ll have to submit proposals, get rejected, or worse not get a response at all. Don’t get disappointed; there are strategies that you can implement to attract sponsors and make your organization look more attractive.
1. Create a wow factor in your proposal
Just like the cover letter you create while finding jobs, you need to create a proposal that stands out in some way. If you create a generic proposal, consider yourself lucky if you get a response in the first place. This is because companies get several proposals every day and unless you have something special in your proposal, no one will even pay attention to it.
Here’s what you can do to make your proposal stand out:
Narrate your company story; perhaps tell them how your company was formed. Always remember to make an emotional connect with the sponsoring company. Elaborating on what you do should be your mission statement. It should tell how it adds value to your company on a daily basis.
You need to be specific about things like funding amount needed and why is that required. It is always advisable to break down the amount and elaborate what portion of funding is required for things like venue, food, accommodation, keynote speaker, etc.
2. Provide Incentives
Sponsorship is a symbiotic relationship. Your sponsors will always think what they’ll get out of your event, or why should they fund your event? For this, you may have to give an incentive like offering a booth or exhibit to showcase their products or services. You may also provide them space to display their logos on mobile apps, banners or flyers. Sponsors will also look for ROI, so make sure you provide them more than what they invest. Below are some ideas to sweeten the deal:
· You can mention the sponsor’s name on your blogs and newsletters.
· Offer incentives, like freebies or discounts for customers who buy the products or services offered by sponsors.
· Include the sponsor’s logo in all your promotional content.
· Request your social media followers to share and like your sponsor’s content.
3. Provide a “Lowest Risk” Solution
It is a known fact that sponsors will be wary of funding your event. This is particularly true for businesses that are not well known. Due to the fear of risk, it is better to propose a “trial” deal. Instead of asking for the complete funding, request for a portion of it in exchange for something valuable. For instance, if you require $5,000, offer to commit for $500 in return. For this, you’ll permit the sponsor to set up one booth, have a guest speaker, have their logo on your promotional content, etc.
This approach reassures sponsors to fund your event by testing the waters first. This little risk approach will assuage their fears of taking a big hit by the end of the event. It also allows them to assess if they would like to fund your future events. A word of caution: try to get as many sponsors as possible. It is always good to not have all your eggs in one basket.
4. Try for a partnership with established companies
If your business is not well known then chances are you may not get sponsors on your side. Try to build a partnership with big brands in the same industry and form a kind of joint event. This way, the potential sponsors will feel comfortable seeing your partnership with reputable brands, and you may be able to draw a bigger event turnout.
When choosing a brand to form a partnership, look for companies with in your industry, but certainly not your competitor. Otherwise, it can lead to a conflict of interest. If your company sells a car accessory, then a car dealer may be a good option to reach out to.
5. Research about your sponsors
Do a background search of your potential sponsor before reaching out to them. A thorough due diligence will not only make you look intelligent but also help you strike a professional conversation. See if your potential sponsors are going through a product release or update, merging or acquiring any company and their balance sheet. If the sponsor you’re eyeing is in the midst of releasing a product, then they would be looking for ways to aggressively market it. Therefore, you can help them by promoting the new launch during your events. You should explain to them the opportunity they will get by sponsoring your events.
You should also read the sponsor’s blog or connect with them on social media. Mention all that you know about them in your proposal and how your event can help them.
Hope these tips can help you get more sponsors for your event and help you execute a memorable event!