Sponsorship is actually marketing. Sponsorship is companies paying to get visibility at your event
How did we do it?
- We got clear on who would be in attendance at our event. This was a first time event and although we couldn’t guarantee attendance (and let’s not forget a festival in the middle of a global pandemic) we could be very confident on who was going to be there, specifically what type of people would be Interested in buying tickets to our event.
- As part of our event, because of an agreement we had with our municipality, we were providing free advertising on our event app to all local businesses. In reaching out about the free advertising we were very clear on who our target market was on this event and asked straight up “if this is also your target market and you’d like to get in front of our attendees in a big way, reach out…” Sponsorship is often misunderstood as “charity” or “just helping out” an event. Sponsorship is actually marketing. Sponsorship is companies paying to get visibility at your event so that your mutual target market can see them. Once the companies realized that our target markets were a match, the phone started to ring.
- When the potential sponsors reached out the next step was to have a phone call with each one. Making time for a one on one call with each sponsor is key to this strategy being a success. On the call I asked questions like
- What makes this event a good place for you to be seen?
- What are you trying to accomplish by advertising at our event?
- Is there a particular message you are trying to get across?
- Do you have a particular budget in mind?
Once we came up with an idea on the call I created a personalized sponsorship offering for each company based on what was most important to them. The sales part was easy, or even non-existant, because the sponsor sold themselves on the opportunity.