When it comes to securing sponsorship, asking for money should always be your first port of call. After all, money is the most useful form of currency for your organisation! However, once you have a genuine relationship with your sponsor you’ll be able to ask them for other types of support as well – and there is much more they can offer besides products and services. Start to think about ways your sponsor can help you raise the profile of your organisation, or generate extra funds through their networks. Some examples of how sponsors can support you include:
- Provide a regular space in their client newsletter (or e-letter) for you to promote your organisation, its services, activities and events.
- Make your flyers available on their counter or in their reception area.
- Enclose a flyer and/or donation slip with their monthly invoice mail out.
- Provide a space or page on their website where you can promote your organisation, with a link through to your website.
- Provide a permanent space on their noticeboard for you to promote your organisation.
- Allow you to use their shop window for displays.
- Have a donation box on their counter or in their reception area.
- Encourage their staff to donate via payroll giving.
- Encourage their social club to run fundraising activities for your organisation.
- Allow you to set up a fundraising stall outside their office / shop.
- Introduce you to other businesses who may be interested in sponsorship.
- Provide a reference for other businesses looking at sponsorship.
- Provide mentors for people in specific positions within your organisation.
- Provide staff as volunteers for specific projects.
- Provide skills or services pro-bono.
- Allow your organisation to use their facilities or equipment at no charge.
- Allow you to access their corporate discounts / buying power for specific products or services.
- Act as a drop-off point or ticketing agent for your events and activities.
- Be an advocate, friend and supporter when you need it most.
Money is undeniably the most practical form of support, but it is all the extra support that makes corporate sponsorship truly valuable.
A successful sponsorship relationship takes more than money – it takes commitment, passion and the willingness to go the extra mile. It is this aspect of sponsorship that often gets overlooked, and as a result, neither the sponsor nor the organisation sees the full benefit sponsorship can bring. This is the real secret of sponsorship.
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