Hosting an event is not cheap and finding sponsors for it is not easy. Most organizations do not
have large budgets that give them unlimited funds for events. This is why so many groups have to find sponsors. And, those who have to find them understand the challenges and frustrations. Some people describe finding sponsors like finding a job as they have to make contacts and are often rejected to ignored. Fortunately, there are plenty of people who have been successful at getting sponsors for their events and they have shared their strategies.
1. Know your target sponsors: To make your proposals have a wow factor, customize them for each sponsor. You can do this by learning about each company’s background and current goals. What is the company’s specialty? What important moments helped define the company? What is happening in the company right now? When you write your proposal, show how their sponsorship will help the company grow by reaching a new audience that will attend your event.
2. Create a proposal with a wow factor: Think of your proposal like a cover letter for a job application. If you send the same one to every company, you probably will not get many responses. Instead, your proposal needs to be uniquely crafted for each individual company so that the right people will read it and the right people will respond favorably to it. To give your proposal a wow factor, include four important details:
● Share your story to bring emotions into the proposal.
● Talk about your mission and what your organization does to achieve it.
● Discuss your demographics and how they will help the company reading your proposal.
● Be clear about the funding you need and how you plan to use it in the event.
3. Discuss the benefits that the sponsors will get: Sponsors should get something in exchange for their help. Be clear about the benefits they get for choosing to help your organization. Will they get a booth? Where will their logo be displayed? How will you help the business grow? These benefits do not need to be one-size-fits-all; they can be individualized.
4. Make sponsorship a low-risk opportunity: When businesses decide to sponsor an event, they are taking a risk, especially since most events do not provide an equal return on investment. Instead of asking businesses to take a big risk by giving large dollar amounts, you could ask for smaller amounts. Then you do not have to promise large returns, too. If things do not go well, then the companies that sponsor you will not lose out. But, if things do go well, then the companies that benefit will want to get involved the next time. And, other companies will, too.
5. Talk about building partnerships: When you write your proposals, discuss the benefits of building partnerships. These partnerships do not just have to be with your organization. If you have several sponsors, they can develop partnerships with each other, too. Established companies can benefit from partnerships with young companies and vice versa. These partnerships help young companies grow their customer bases and they help established companies reach out to new customers, too. Your partnerships with different types of companies will help your event reach a wide range of attendees.