Seven steps to corporate partnership success
11 June 2020 at 7:20 am
As community needs increase and donor income potentially drops, you may be thinking that now is the time to onboard a corporate partner. Hailey Cavill-Jaspers shares her seven step proven formula for corporate partnership success.
Companies must engage customers – it’s vital in a recession. They’ll need to demonstrate they’re solving social problems and communicating uplifting stories of hope. When they realise that partnering with a cause gives them both, will your organisation be ready?
It’s no secret that winning corporate partnerships is challenging. Failing to secure a partner after months of hard work is one thing. Securing the wrong partner – that can result in over-servicing, staff burn-out or even a damaged reputation.
As we head into recession, the needs of your community will be immense; you’ll be asked to do more, with less. Securing a major corporate partner can help. However, they’ll want to partner with progressive, impactful, purpose-driven organisations in mutually-beneficial partnerships. There will be no room – or spare cash – for handouts in 2021.
Are you ready?
No matter how clever, connected, or hard-working you are, there’s one monumental thing standing between you and success – your state of readiness. It’s the primary reason that not for profits fail at securing corporate partnerships. Discover if you’re ready by doing this free Readiness Q&A.
To win corporate partners and sponsors, you must be able to present a well-crafted, compelling proposition to the right person, at the right company, at the right time, and at the right price point.
Perhaps you’re not getting results with your current strategy? Or perhaps you’re simply overwhelmed, with no idea where to start (understandable, given everything on your plate right now!). Throwing more money at it isn’t the answer. Fear not, there is a robust formula that’s been successfully forging corporate partnerships for 20-plus years, and now it’s in an online format called BePartnerReady.com™. It’s a proven technique I’ve tried, tested, refined and developed over more than two decades. We’ve had amazing success already – see our testimonials and success stories.
The BePartnerReady.com™ program guides you through seven critical steps as you implement them within your organisation and move closer to success. Download the infographic here.
More than one purse
Implementing these steps enables you to gift-wrap programs/campaigns/events for sponsorship, (giving you “tied” funding) but also to package up partnerships, which can provide significant “untied” funding. It’s flexible enough to adapt to all four purses that contain funding and numerous benefits, especially the CSR and marketing purses, which are the largest. Download the Four Purses infographic for details on each area/department of a corporate that not for profits can tap into.
What’s your goal?
Before beginning the process it’s important to understand what precisely you want from a corporate partner. There is so much more to a partner than just funding – download this infographic detailing the seven benefits of a corporate partnership.
If you would like to discover what a corporate partner could mean for you and your organisation, sneak into our program before 1 July to create your corporate partnerships intention.
Seven steps to corporate partnership success
Step one: SWOTA
This helps you to identify your organisation’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats in relation to your ability to be successful with corporate partnerships. The “A” is the practical Action list resulting from it (too many SWOT exercises just languish on the pile of paperwork, don’t they?). This is where having a clear intention helps, so you can compare the SWOTA against what “success” looks like.
Step two: Assets inventory and valuation
It’s foolish to invite a corporate to “partner” if you don’t know what you have to offer. Partnership is a mutual exchange – not philanthropy. It’s also risky not knowing the market value of your assets. Step two features a world-first DIY asset valuation model, called the Ph Formula, created by a media expert. By the end of this step you’ll have an inventory of all your assets that can be offered to a corporate, enabling you to package up a partner and sponsor proposal easily and quickly, with a robust investment breakdown that’ll blow their socks off! No more guessing, blindly stabbing in the dark, or just barely covering your costs.
Step three: Prospects list
Instead of asking the board for contacts (which might get you a donation, but not a partnership) our process identifies corporates and brands that fit with your brand values, target market and geographic reach. An initial “suspect list” of over 200 is refined to a “prospect list” of 60, then honed to a “hot list” of 20. This manageable list can then be thoroughly researched prior to approach.
Step four: Credentials presentation
The first meeting with a corporate is a professional presentation – not a coffee chat. This is business – and time is money in their world. We’ve perfected a 15-minute credentials presentation that is compelling and gets you to a yes (or no) fast, without wasting months endlessly dancing in circles.
Step five: Partnership model
The way you wish to engage with corporates and brands is wrapped up in an outward-facing corporate partnership model. This contains a minimum fee for companies to align with your brand and an internal “rules of engagement” that the entire organisation must adhere to (including, if federated, state partners in readiness for national opportunities).
Step six: The approach
This is often where not for profits start, another reason for failure. The approach is far more successful when you have your ducks in a row from steps one to five. We’ve refined a technique for getting a corporate to notice – and agree to meet with – you, including a cut-through communication template.
Step seven: Securing partners
Because of the work done in steps one to six, getting corporates across the line is much quicker. Providing a Q&A to the corporate enables you to discover what they want, and this makes negotiation efficient and enjoyable. Our program provides all the legal templates required for both partnership and sponsorship, which protects your IP and clearly articulates the obligations of each partner. Large corporate partnerships agreed on a handshake really are a thing of the past.
This seven-step process – contained within the new online program BePartnerReady.com™, has been producing stunning results for not for profits and social enterprises – large and small – for over 14 years. Valuable partnerships – many still operating today – have been forged for PetRescue, Fred Hollows Foundation, Oxfam, Lifeline, Stroke Foundation, and MCRI, to name just a few.
About the author: This article was written by Hailey Cavill-Jaspers, Australia’s most successful corporate-cause partnership matchmaker. Watch her story here. She is co-founder of online training program BePartnerReady.com™ which is now open for enrolment, closing on 6 July 2020. Visit BePartnerReady.com™ for success stories, testimonials and much more.