Get More out of your events
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5 Tips to Get the Most Out of Special Event Sponsorship

Gone are the days of bronze, gold and platinum sponsorships. If you are still using these–stop! We will discuss new and creative ways to raise more money and better align sponsor and organizational goals.

The goal of sponsorship is to help offset costs of your event, but don’t forget about the sponsor–they want to showcase their company too. If you don’t take care of them, they won’t come back!

Get creative

When coming up with sponsorship opportunities, allow some room for customizing. Don’t try and fit a square peg into a round hole; for example, don’t squeeze someone into a bronze category when maybe they only value recognition at the networking reception.

  • Categorize your sponsorship opportunities based on the event. For example, allow for sponsors to own the social media feed, or a session or break. This will allow them to get excited about your program and not feel lumped into a category with other companies.
  • Be aware: When creating these opportunities, try to limit the speaking opportunities from sponsors so as not take away from the educational aspect of the conference. And, quite simply, no one is listening.

Don’t devalue pre-conference benefits

Maybe you want to get the sponsors in on the action before the event? You should work together to craft joint messages promoting the event to both respective contact lists.

The sponsor could also provide testimonials or video clips in anticipation of the event. But as noted above, just be careful that you don’t offer speaking spots to sponsors; sponsorship is not pay-to-play. This will devalue your conference, and you will lose credibility with your participants.

In-kind sponsorship can be your best friend

Sometimes in-kind sponsorship can be more valuable than cash. Think about areas where a supplier can provide you a product of service in lieu of cash.

For example, hotels or conference centers can offer discounts to be recognized as a sponsor of the event. Other examples are name tags, audiovisual, gift bags, furniture rentals, and food and beverage, among others.

Whenever you are thinking of something you need to pay for, you should ask yourself, “Is this a company that wants to be affiliated with my event?” If they think showcasing their brand at your event will lead to more sales, they may offer discounted or free items to be recognized as a sponsor.

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