8 Tips To Give Your Sponsorship Strategy An Unfair Advantage
27 January 2015 at 10:29 am
Sponsorship expert Abby Clemence asks if your Not for Profit is ready to engage corporate sponsors in 2015 and offers her top tips for planning your new year sponsorship approach.
Every Not for Profit organisation and charity I speak with is understandably keen to secure diverse sources of income which will allow them to grow and become more sustainable.
Time and again though, too many jump head-long into sending out generic sponsorship letters and proposals to companies and brands without knowing, or being fully prepared for what sponsors are looking for in a sponsorship deal.
Sponsorship comes out of a company's marketing budget. This is a vital element to be aware of when you want to create a successful sponsorship strategy.
That means a sponsor's investment (just like every other marketing spend on advertising and promotion of their brand) will need to be given the chance to recoup some return on investment by presenting opportunities to sell more products and services as a result of their alignment with you.
You know your organisation or event better than anyone else, but there are some key things you will need to be really up to speed on when you are approaching sponsors to join your team.
Funnily enough, sponsors will not necessarily be interested (initially) in the intricacies of who you are and what you do – that may come later. Keeping your information focused on the big picture and introducing potential sponsors the "macro environment" that you play in (before you dive into the specifics of who are you and why you do it) will be the best approach to take when you start to build new relationships.
Here are 8 key tips to think about:
1. Know who your Not for Profit organisation, charity or event represents.
2. Have a database of the people that you can communicate and interact with.
3. Know what percentage of your community/profession that you communicate with.
4. Communicate through a wide variety of ways and channels with your supporters
5. Know how often you communicate with your community of followers
6. Know who else is in your space. Make sure you know your competitive environment, as they will surely be approaching the same sponsors as you are!
7. Be able to answer the question "What does your organisation or event do, that no-one else does?"
8. Have a Sponsorship Policy in place.
Remember, whilst sending out generic letters and proposals might feel like the quickest and easiest way to get through the list of companies that you have identified as great prospects, once you have made an approach (particularly if you are unsuccessful) it is very difficult to try and engage them at a later date when you are better prepared and ready to provide them with a tailored professional approach.
With approximately 700,000 NFPs and charities in Australia alone, companies and brands are becoming spoilt for choice and much more discerning about where they put their sponsorship dollars.
Putting in some prep time has never been more vital than now when you are creating a sponsorship plan!
To help out, I have created a FREE 'Sponsorship-Readiness Checklist' that fleshes out these 8 tips in much more detail to support you in the sponsorship planning phase.
Download it HERE
About the Author: Abby Clemence is the Managing Director of Infinity Sponsorship, a Queensland-based national consultancy.