Researching Corporate sponsorships

The Ultimate Guide to Event Sponsorship

Obtaining event sponsorship is a great way to support an event for your business. Learn about the types of sponsorships, the benefits and how to find a perfect sponsor!
September 17, 2022

Event sponsorship is a great way for companies to receive support from another company in terms of funds and advertising. Event sponsorship can help make your event even better in so many ways! There are various strategies your businesses can take to go about event sponsorship; in this blog we’ll cover all there is to know about sponsorship, from the different types to their value and how to get one for your event. 

What Is Event Sponsorship?

Companies of all sizes host events all the time, all over the world. When you’re looking for a little extra financial assistance, look into event sponsorship! Event sponsorship is defined as an outside company that supports your event with funds, in exchange for brand exposure, discounted tickets or being able to speak at the event. When a company agrees to be a sponsor for an event, the hope is that their company will also move forward in terms of success. 

This guide will help you navigate your way through achieving an event sponsor. 

4 Types Of Event Sponsors 

There are different types of event sponsorships that you can choose for your business. These include financial sponsorships, in-kind sponsorships, media event sponsorships, and influencer and content creator sponsorships. Let’s look a little more in-depth on what these sponsorships entail! 

1. Financial Sponsorship

Financial sponsorship is the leading type of sponsorship when it comes to events. When a company decides to sponsor your event, it is ultimately going to benefit both parties in the end. Your event will have the funds to make a great event, and the sponsor company will get exposure in return! You are also able to create tiered event sponsorship packages that companies can choose from. The packages can range in price in exchange for more or less event benefits. Lower priced packages will have smaller compensation benefits and higher priced packages will have larger compensation benefits. 

2. In-Kind Sponsorships

These types of sponsors are ones who provide services, experiences or goods rather than funds. Some examples of in-kind sponsorships include: 

  • Sponsoring food for the event
  • Venue halls or rooms
  • Prizes and giveaways
  • Sponsored merchandise

A company who decides to sponsor your event can usually choose which type they want to be, and any kind of contribution they give will only benefit your event!

3. Media Event Sponsorship

Almost everyone has a smartphone now, meaning that the way companies market to their audience has changed. Social media apps, no matter which ones you use, have ads. If your company chooses to become a media sponsor, you have the option to create ads and marketing, all tailored to your target audience. This type of sponsorship is great for smaller companies as they gain great exposure this way! Email marketing also falls into this category, as you are able to send out an email blast about any upcoming events, product launches or demos right to your target audience. 

4. Influencer and Content Creator Sponsorship

Influencers are a huge part of social media marketing and how companies make their money. These influencers have a large presence on social media and their followers are loyal! According to Forbes, 81% of consumers are going to buy a product if they see it on social media. Influencers and content creators make up such a large presence on social media and partnering with them can be great for your company and will create a lasting impression for your audience. Influencers also have followers from all around the world, so partnering with them will bring awareness to your company on a global level. 

How to keep guests engaged at your next event

Why Event Sponsorships are Valuable to Everyone

Now that you know the types of event sponsorships, it’s important to know some event sponsorship benefits. Many elements need to come together perfectly to make a great and memorable event. When it comes to securing an event sponsor, you want to make the right choice and it will be beneficial for a few reasons. 

  1. Budget

One of the most important aspects of a successful event is the budget. An important question to ask yourself at the beginning of the planning process is how much money in the budget is dedicated to the sponsorship itself? If your company needs help with the funds, reaching out to a sponsor can benefit both parties. Keep in mind that your company has a budget, and being up front with your sponsors when you pitch to them will make your company seem honest and reliable. 

  1. Pair With Reputable Companies

In searching for event sponsors, it’s beneficial to seek out companies that have solid values and reputable morals. Those values and morals will mirror back to your company, leaving customers with a feeling of trust when regarding your company. Pairing with a company who prioritizes philanthropic efforts, for example, will show customers that your value aligns with those as well. 

  1. Increased Exposure 

Event sponsorship is beneficial for both parties involved. When you partner with an event sponsor, you will see an increase in exposure and an influx of new consumers, especially through social media. And the sponsoring company will receive exposure from people attending your event. Getting your company’s name out there in the world is great for everyone involved! 

Read and Learn: What our Survey Data Revealed About What Attracts the Most People to Events

How to Find an Event Sponsor

When beginning your search for finding an event sponsor, you will want to consider a few factors. 

  1. Understand Your Audience 

Knowing what your audience wants from your company and your event is crucial to finding the right sponsor. Looking for sponsors who align with your audiences will make the process easy. 

  1. Target Similar Industries

Companies who are looking to be event sponsors are more likely to partner with a company that targets a similar audience. Tech companies who reach out to other tech companies are like a meeting of the minds, bringing together new and fresh ideas with the added benefit of increased industry exposure.

  1. Do Your Research

Choosing a company you partner with for any event is no easy task. It’s an important decision that not only affects your company, but also the guests who attend your event. This is where thorough research plays a part. Through Google, you can find different event sponsors that fit your company’s needs and budget. You can then evaluate and compare your options to select one that best suits your event. 

  1. Have Your Pitch Prepared

When the time comes to pitch to a potential event sponsor, keep a running list of talking points you want to include in your pitch speech. Make sure you have your expectations clear and precise, but also listen to what the potential sponsor wants in return. If your company hasn’t created sponsorship packages for them to choose from, there may be some give and take between the two companies. Keep in mind that negotiating is a part of the corporate world, so be ready to negotiate your prices. A proposal template is a great tool to have when pitching to potential sponsors, but don’t forget to ensure it’s customized for the company you’re presenting to!

6 Creative Ideas for Sponsor Activation 

Once you’ve locked in a sponsor for your event, it’s time to start thinking of collaboration ideas. There are a range of options you can choose from that apply to a number of industries and businesses. Thinking outside the box for new and fresh ideas can be helpful to draw in new customers that may not have known about you before. We’ve gathered 4 different and creative ideas for you and your sponsors! 

Guide to Event Sponsorship

1. Utilize Branding  

When it comes to branding for your event, it's important to prioritize showcasing your sponsor’s brand along with yours. Prepare different branded materials that you can showcase during your event; this could mean on billboards, event programs, t-shirts or water bottles. In a thank you to the event sponsor, you may want to send them a swag bag full of branded goodies. Branding can also take place on social media by running campaigns with your sponsor. Both online and offline sponsorship branding have benefits that will grant extra exposure for both businesses. 

2. Booths

A great way to promote your sponsor at the event is allotting them space to display a booth! If your venue space allows, have your sponsor set up a promotional booth to display anything they’d like involving their business. This will further the exposure they get and will in turn lead to more business for them! 

3. Networking Lunges/ Breakout Rooms

A great way for your sponsor to get more involved with your event is to have them host a networking lounge or breakout room for attendees! A breakout room or networking lounge is a great way for attendees to take a break from the event and take time to get to know other attendees and make new connections. If your sponsor hosts one of these, they can have workers in their company get to know attendees as well, spreading the word about their business! 

4. Create Content via TikTok 

Everyone knows how much TikTok has exploded onto the scene in the last two years. As long as both companies have an account that can be tagged as well as sending consumers to your event link, utilizing this platform is a smart choice to reach new audiences. You can use it to advertise your event ahead of time with your sponsor, or create fun content during the event with your sponsor. Whether you want to do a trending dance or do a Q&A session, your company will be able to reach millions and the engagement between both companies and consumers will skyrocket! 

5. Swag Bags 

Swag bags are a great way to thank your attendees for coming to your event, and an even better way to feature your event sponsorships! They can be filled with branded merchandise from your event sponsor (hint - maybe even one of their recently launched products). 

6. Contests 

Making events fun for customers is beneficial for everyone involved! Holding contests during the event for your customers to win prizes will create a buzz throughout the event. Your company and your sponsor can combine funds to provide both small and large contest prizes, ranging from a fun experience or even a trip. Partnering with a company who wishes to provide an experience or trip as a prize will be memorable for all of the attendees and will be fun for everyone!

How to Repurpose Content from Sponsorship

All throughout your event, be sure to take pictures and videos of the highlights! Using these pictures and videos will help to promote any future events you may host! People who were not in attendance at the event will see how much fun was had and will sign up for the next event! Another use for these pictures is to show the event sponsor how their name and brand was used within the event. It shows the event sponsor that their funds, or in-kind donations went to a good cause and were used correctly. The event sponsor is most likely going to sponsor more events for your company in the future!

Providing ROI For Sponsors 

When a company sponsors an event, their main goal is to try and reach their target audience as well as gain a new following. After the event is over, reaching out to the attendees for feedback will only help with the ROI for event sponsors

1. How Event Sponsors Will Benefit From An Event

When investing your money into an event, your company wants to ensure that their money is going to a good cause and being put to good use. As the company that is hosting the event, your main objective after the event is over is to provide the sponsoring company with pictures, feedback and event analytics to show how successful the event was. Once the sponsoring company sees how successful the event was, they will know that their funds were used wisely and everyone at the event enjoyed themselves. 

2. Getting A Proper Headcount of Attendees

If you, the sponsoring company, decides to be an in-kind sponsor, getting the accurate information regarding the number of attendees will be super beneficial to you. If you are donating food or products to the event company, you don’t want to deliver too many items and then possibly have them go to waste, because now that is money coming out of the company’s pocket. By keeping the lines of communication open between the two companies, you will be able to get an accurate headout of how many people are attending the event and send over the correct amount of items. 

3. Allow Sponsors To Engage With Attendees

When attendees of the event can interact with the sponsors on a personal level, they will be more inclined to remember the event sponsor. Putting a face to a name makes all the difference in the world, when the main line of communication is usually email. Human connections can go a long way in the corporate world, and having employees from the sponsoring company attend the event and meet the attendees will be beneficial to everyone involved. 

Effective Ways To Engage With Sponsors

If you need a little polishing on your events to turn them from ordinary into extraordinary, don’t be afraid to ask for a sponsorship! There are a few key ways that you can engage with sponsorships to make the partnership beneficial for both parties. 

1. Understand Their Needs

When you present your sponsorship to a potential partner, understanding that in order for them to agree to a sponsorship it needs to be beneficial for them as well. Ensure they find value in the sponsorship by presenting them first with the benefits they can receive if they agree to a partnership with you, such as the amount of potential new customers who will be exposed to their business. 

2. Align Your Goals

When you communicate with a potential sponsorship partner, make sure to find out what their goals are. Once you know their goals, you can present your sponsorship as a great opportunity for them to reach their business goals, too. 

3. Treat Them Like Partners 

The best kind of business relationships are ones where both parties can come together with respect to reach common goals. When working with an event sponsorship partner, teamwork is everything! You want to make sure your partners feel like you’re working as a team together and not just providing funding for your event. Find out all you can about their business, goals, and even let them have a hand in some event of the planning to make them feel like part of your team. 

4. Find the Right Speech and the Right Time

Approaching a sponsor to fund your event can be intimidating, but with a solid plan of action it can be a piece of cake. When you speak with them, make sure to highlight all the potential benefits, including the exposure their business would get, how much revenue you made from previous events, and the new opportunities that could arise for them if they join you as partners. You also want to highlight why your event would be a great opportunity for them by studying the target audience and doing other important research. 

In order to develop a long lasting relationship with your event sponsors, don’t forget to express your gratitude to them! If your company executes a great event, and it was an overall success, let the event sponsor know that- saying thank you goes a long way in this industry! A thank you note, either hand-written or digital with pictures or videos of the event sent to your event sponsor will let them know how truly grateful you are for all of their help and support of your event. 

Speaker at in-person event

Tips for Getting Event Sponsorships

  1. Be Specific About Your Goals 

When beginning your search for an event sponsor, be sure to have a list of goals you wish to achieve during and after the event. Explaining these goals to potential event sponsors will let them know how their funds or donations will be put to good use. After the event concludes, sending your event sponsor metrics and data from the event and how you met or exceeded your goals will ensure that their funds were used correctly. 

  1. Use A Digital Tool To Find Sponsors 

You may not know where to start when looking for an event sponsor, or even what kind of sponsor you may want, using a digital tool will help to jumpstart your search! 

  • SponsorPitch - Search through thousands of sponsors, pricing and previous deals to find the right sponsor for your event! Data for your potential sponsors is right at your fingertips! 
  • Sponsor My Event - No matter what type of event you may be hosting, Sponsor My Event helps you connect with the perfect sponsor for your target audience! This tool even connects you to sponsors within your area! Listen and read testimonials from companies who have held events with the help of sponsors, thanks to this tool! 
  1. Be Open-Minded 

You may have your ideal event sponsor in mind, but they might not be able to help with sponsoring your event. As you pitch to potential sponsors, keep in mind that they receive hundreds of emails a day, asking for the same thing. Don’t become discouraged if you don’t hear back from some of them. Keeping an open mind and remaining optimistic about achieving sponsors will help to keep the planning process running smoothly. 

Sponsor Analytics

Now that you are on your way to finding the best event sponsors for your event,you are ready to measure your success! Using event analytics will help your company to better understand the performance of your event after and its ROI. In Hubilo’s event analytics platform, you are able to see the success of the event engagement and even pass this information onto your sponsors. Event analytics can be held pre-event with registration tracking, during the event when monitoring attendee behavior and post-event for bringing all the metrics together! 

And there you have it, an entire guide on all things event sponsorship! Not only will bringing in an event sponsor provide valuable benefits for the event itself, but it will also in turn provide value for attendees. Finding a suitable event sponsor for your event that aligns with your company and message is equally as important as well. So long as you provide a partnership where the sponsoring company can benefit as well, then you’ll be on your way to a successful event!

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