HISTORY OF SPONSORSHIP
Sponsorships came about as a good way to finance community events. Large companies were able to generate product awareness, do direct target marketing, establish their name in the community and receive a tax break for sponsoring such events. This tradition of philanthropy is one of the oldest forms of corporate social responsibility where companies build stronger ties with the communities in which they do business.
Almost every event begins with a budget. The shorter you are on budget, the more you must creatively finance. One excellent way to stretch your dollars is to obtain a co-sponsor. When planning your event, seek out another organization or company which is not a competitor, but would likely benefit from exposure to your audience.
SPONSORSHIP PARTICIPATION MAY INCLUDE:
- Sharing in the cost of the event
- Donation of their service
- Advertising the event to their employees or customers
- Include your business at their next event
- Terms of co-sponsorship may vary greatly
YOUR PARTICIPATION MAY INCLUDE:
- Including their name and logo in all event advertising
- Promoting them at the event by publicly acknowledging their participation
- Including some of their literature in the next mailing to your customers
- Giving them the mailing list from your event
- To follow through on what was promised, keep samples and photos of sponsor acknowledgements and send them in a thank-you letter following the event
Always ask if there is extra promotional support that can go along with any dollars spent; it can help stretch your budget. For example, if a radio schedule is purchased, ask if you can be the sponsor of the morning news broadcast "This message brought to you by...," then have your commercial run in conjunction with that announcement.
- Select your co-sponsors wisely. Affiliation with a sponsor will impact the image of the event.
- Always put your arrangements in writing.
- Provide promotional coupons for their stores promoting the event.
- This type of teamwork often leads to a very positive, ongoing alliance, which makes it one of the most exciting aspects of event planning. If the event is a win-win for both and the event is recurring, you may have an annual sponsor and funding or promotion for your event.