When it comes to hosting or organizing a money-making event, securing sponsorship can be the difference between generating income or making a loss on an event. That is why you should learn how to attract sponsors to your event.
Sponsors play a significant role in making an event successful.
When done well, having sponsorship for an event adds or creates a lot of value for the event participants.
For companies or businesses, event sponsorship is one way of reaching a target audience.
Events provide brands with an opportunity to increase awareness, promote or market their products or services and a platform to engage with their potential or existing clients.
If you are an event planner, understanding how to attract sponsors to your event should be of high priority.
As an event planner, I have been able to attract and partner with various brands in over fifteen years of running or managing events.
In this article, I will share with you tips, ideas and strategies you can use to attract sponsors to your event.
This is your ultimate guide on how to get or secure sponsorship from businesses or companies for your upcoming event.
How to Attract Sponsors to Your Event
Sponsors play a significant role in increasing the amount of money an event planner makes from the event.
Here is how you can attract sponsors to your event;
- Create a plan
- Start early
- Have a budget
- Build a landing page or website
- Market and promote
- Have a target hit list
- Leverage past events
- Use social media
- Send proposals to potential sponsors.
- Showcase your audience
- Create an experience
- Demonstrate return on investment
- Engage the right person
- Do research
- Leverage technology
- Create partnerships
- Use graphics and visuals
- Package and pricing
- Host sponsor events
If you are in the business of organizing or hosting events, you should find ways to secure event sponsorship.
Also, sponsors increase event credibility in the market.
19 Ways to Attract Sponsors to Your Event
One of the skills you should learn as an event planner is ability to attract and secure event sponsorship.
Over the last couple of years, I have held various events and have worked with many brand sponsors.
The experience has taught me that to attract sponsors to your event, you should do the following;
Create a plan
Every event starts as a plan. You should create an elaborate plan about how you are going to finance the event budget.
One ways to fund an event is through generating sponsorship income.
Creating a plan helps you know how much you need. This will guide you in determining the brands to approach.
In order to attract sponsors to your event, you should start your outreach early.
The reason this is critical is because it takes a while for companies to make a decision on whether to sponsor your event or not.
Also, event sponsorship is part of the marketing activities undertaken by brands or businesses. This requires budget allocation within an organization.
Having your event as part of the ones being considered by a company is always a good start.
That is why you should start early to talk to potential sponsors and partners.
Have a budget
Event budgeting is very important.
Among the things you should include is the budget line for reaching out to sponsors.
You need money for things such as internet data, telephone airtime, designing proposals and creating an event website.
Build a landing page or website
As part of your event, you should have a website or at least a landing page.
This is an online platform where you can share information about your event with potential sponsors.
As you negotiate, you can leverage this online platform to secure better deals with a sponsor.
Market and promote
To attract sponsors to your event, you should be able to market and promote the event.
If nobody knows about your event, you are likely to fail in getting sponsors to your event.
For example, if you are organizing an awards event, it would help to learn how to use social media to promote awards.
Have a target hit list
To attract sponsors to your event, you need to have a target list of the brands or businesses you will approach.
Having such a list is very critical to your success.
This is because your research should show you who are the best brands aligned to your event.
It also allows you to be focused when looking for event sponsors.
Leverage past events
If you have hosted or organized events in the past, you should find ways to leverage them.
You can share how the past events were, and also share testimonials of past sponsors.
Use social media
You should leverage the power of social media to attract more sponsors into your event.
Social media can be a very powerful tool to promote your event and reach a wider audience.
Brands like events that can help them increase awareness and reach new customers.
Send proposals to potential sponsors.
It is important to reach out to your target list of potential sponsors.
Create a proposal and send it through to them.
Make it interesting and demonstrate the value the sponsor would get being part of your event.
Always remember sponsors are keen on a return on investment for their sponsorship dollars.
Show them that spending money on your event has a better ROI.
Showcase your audience
Brands always follow existing or potential audience and target market.
For you to attract sponsors to your event, you should be able to showcase your audience.
Let the sponsor know who your target audience is, their age, their purchasing power and decision-making power among other consideration.
This helps the brand or your potential sponsor to determine whether to be part of your event or not.
Many sponsors are trying to reach certain market segments.
If you can demonstrate that you will help them reach that market, they will be more than willing to open their purses to you.
Create an experience
Businesses and organizations are always approached to provide sponsorship to many events.
To attract a sponsor to your event, you should create an event that has an edge over others.
One way to do that is to create an experience, something that your potential sponsor cannot say no to.
You should think through your event concept and provide your event attendees with an experience they won’t forget.
Brands are always eager to sponsor and support events that can help them create such experiences.
Demonstrate return on investment
When a company sponsors your event, they expect a positive return on their marketing investment.
It is your responsibility to demonstrate how you will help the sponsor get a return on that investment.
This can happen when you align your event’s objective with the goals of your sponsor.
Engage the right person
When looking for event sponsors, you should aim at find the right person to engage.
You do not want to waste time or resources talking with the wrong person with the company.
Do your research and find out the person who handles sponsorships. You might even get information as to whether they have a budget to sponsor or not.
This is very important in helping you attract sponsors to your event.
I have been able to secure huge sponsorship tickets from brands by dealing or engaging the right person within an organization.
When planning to host an event, it is important to always undertake research.
The research am talking about here relates to sponsorship.
Understand the brands you are targeting. Is your event aligned to their goals?
Know the key persons within those companies. This will help you when it comes to outreach.
Have data and information about your event. This includes market information about your event participants.
The idea is to be prepared when approaching potential sponsors.
Events industry is evolving with the technology.
There are a lot of tools and platforms that can help you reach out to and engage potential sponsors.
You should leverage technology in our engagement with brands.
Technology can help you scale and attract more sponsors to your event.
When it comes to event sponsorship, not all sponsors might be able to support you financially.
You should be able to think strategically when it comes to some brands or businesses.
Some might be more valuable to you as partners and not just sponsors.
In fact, you can be able to finance your event budget by getting in-kind support from your partners.
For example, you can partner with a telecommunication company to provide internet at your event. This would help you save on the cost of paying for internet.
Another example would be partnering with a payment processing brand to facilitate card payments for event tickets.
There are many ways in which you can create and build long term partnerships with brands.
It works very well if your event will be taking place every year. You can secure long-term partnership deals with brands.
Use graphics and visuals
In promoting your event, you should use high-quality graphics and images.
You can use these when creating your presentation to potential sponsors.
Having quality visuals will also improve your event proposal. They tell a story about your event brand too.
You are seeking financial support and sponsorship from businesses.
Let your graphics, images and videos demonstrate that your event deserves to be considered.
Package and pricing
When it comes to sponsorship, the value proposition you provide to brands determine the amount of money you get.
Please note I said value.
A lot of people focus on what they will get from the sponsor, and ignore the value they are bringing to the table.
It is important to frame your sponsorship request well.
Give more than you are taking. Ensure the sponsor gets more from your event to achive their marketing objectives.
This kind of mentality will help you to attract and secure sponsors for your event.
Host sponsor events
Another idea you can use to attract sponsors is to host special events with your potential sponsors.
I have implemented this technique and it worked very well.
List down ten or twenty top sponsors you would like to target. Then organize a small and intimate event for them.
You could host them for breakfast or a cocktail. Show them the value of being part of your event.
When executed well, you can be able to sign-off big ticket sponsorship with this strategy.
In conclusion, having the skills to attract sponsors to your event is very critical to your success as an event planner.
Sponsorship plays a big role when it comes to how an event makes money.
It is one of the major sources of revenues of some event.
Event sponsors also add value to an event by creating an experience for the event audience or participants.
When done well, attracting sponsors to your event is going to increase the market perception about the event.
By applying the above ideas, tips and strategies on how to attract sponsors to your event, you will get a higher return on your investment.
Finally, it is important to ensure that event sponsors are fully engaged in your post-event evaluation.
Make sure they understand that their return on investment for sponsoring your event is of paramount importance to you.
Ask their opinion on what was good about your event and what worked for them and also what they feel could be improved for future events. Remember to send them a thank you card or gift and invite them to your next event.
I hope you have found value in this resource and that it has been of value to you.
As you organize or plan to host your event, this will be your ultimate guide on how to secure or get sponsors to your event.