Sponsorships Got You In A Rut?

by: Danielle Jessup

Do you hold the same meetings year after year and roll out the same sponsorship packet?  If so,111 it may be time to do some updating, as many vendors are looking for more creative ways to get their company name out there.  Whether it is a small meeting for 35 people or a large conference for hundreds, sponsors want to see the ROI.  Standard sponsorship levels still have their place but it’s also time to start thinking outside the box.  Work with the vendors directly to ensure they get the most out of their sponsorship.

Here are a few tips to help you secure sponsorships.

  1. Tailored Sponsorships – Sometimes the vendors have creative ideas on how they would like to get their name out to the attendees. Work with vendors to create a tailored package that fits their needs and meets the needs of the convention.  For example, there may be a sponsorship option for “Golf Cart Beverage Sponsor”.  Maybe add to the package customized koozies to pass out with the beverages.  Not only will it have the sponsor logo on it, it also becomes a keepsake.
  1. WiFi Sponsorship – If working with a hotel or convention center, we all know free WiFi in the meeting space may not be an option due to the cost. Attendees ask for it so why not offer it?  Sponsorship opportunities could include the password to be customized to the sponsoring company, signage to promote the company with the customized password and possibly depending on the cost, could also include charging stations that allow attendees to hook up their electronics while connecting to the internet.  Consider placing the charging station in the hall near the sponsoring company so they get the benefit of the foot traffic.
  1. Hospitality Suite – Instead of having one vendor sponsor the hospitality suite, open it to all companies who pay for this option. Work with the hotel to get a complimentary suite, or a suite at the staff/group rate that will be designated for hospitality events only.  The sponsorship can cover the cost of the hotel night and the sponsoring company can use the room to host a VIP event.  The sponsoring company would be responsible for covering the food and beverage costs, but the meeting planner would work with the company to order the food and ensure they get the group discounts.
  1. Golf Sponsorships – Are you hosting a golf tournament? Don’t just stop with golf tournament sponsorships; think about opportunities before and after the tournament.222  Consider a Putting Challenge prior to the start of the tournament.  This is a great way to get individuals to the club early to register and make a little extra money.  Sponsorship may be as minimal as $300, $200 of which goes to the winner and $100 goes to the charity/organization.  You can make this a free event or add a small charge to increase the funds raised.  The recognition for the sponsoring company is great and also allows them to connect with the players.  Another great sponsorship opportunity is for the Awards Ceremony.  At the conclusions of the tournament, the sponsoring company can have beverages provided, opportunity to connect with the players and announce the winners of the tournament.  This is not only a great sponsorship but also brings the players together to recognize those who won.

There are so many ways to take a simple sponsorship and customize the experience that meets the needs of your vendors.  The most important thing when asking a company to give you money is for them to know they are getting something in return.  Don’t be afraid to think outside the box.  Your ideas may spark something for years to come.

Do you have a great sponsorship package idea? Share your ideas with us by commenting on my blog below.

Images courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net 

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