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Event Sponsorship: 4 questions every event planner should ask themselves


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Approaching a company with a sponsorship request for your event is always difficult. A few years ago my students had to organise their very own festival. The plan was to organise a town based festival for the local community. We approached a bank that had recently opened a branch in the centre of town. After researching the bank’s mission and business approach, as well as their customers, we sent them an email and got invited for a meeting.

Sometimes you have meetings that just don’t work out. This was one of those. And after 5 minutes that became painfully clear. Long story short: we had misunderstood the bank’s mission. “We cannot provide sponsorship for your event”, the bank manager said, “but I can place some of my employees outside and hand out balloons”. Yes, that is really helpful.

Before you approach a potential sponsor you need to have a good look at your own event, the audience you are aiming for, your own data, and what you actually want from a potential sponsor.

This slideshow will help you identify some of the questions you need to find the answers to with regards to event sponsorship.

Published in: Marketing
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Event Sponsorship: 4 questions every event planner should ask themselves

  1. 1. Event Sponsorship: 4 questions every event planner should ask themselves by Jarno Stegeman The Event Tutor
  2. 2. Event sponsorship $878m in USA spend on sponsorship for festivals, fairs & events Top 3 industries to sponsor events: alcohol brands, health & beauty brands, food brands
  3. 3. Before you approach any potential sponsor you need to have a word with yourself. You need to come up with some really good and well thought through answers to the following questions:
  4. 4. What is your event? Who is my audience? Do you need sponsorship? What can you offer your sponsors?
  5. 5. You need to decide what the story of your event is. Be clear on what you are trying to achieve with your event. Make sure that the story of your event is a compelling one. Are you able to explain what the essence of your event is? Like any other good story yours needs to have a beginning, middle, and an end. Now look at the story of the company you want to approach. Are there similarities with their story? Are you both trying to achieve the same thing? Look for common ground. What is your event?
  6. 6. Research your audience demographics Commonalities between your audience and that of your potential sponsor What do your fans eat, drink, like, consume, wear, etc. Who is your audience?
  7. 7. Online searches for Glastonbury 2016: what people were Googling Where is Glastonbury festival? How long is Glastonbury festival? How big is Glastonbury festival? What is Glastonbury festival? How often is Glastonbury festival held? • Gigwise • Mountain • Warehouse • Skiddle • Tesco • Her Packing List • All Noise • Go outdoors Sites taking advantage of these searches:
  8. 8. Does your event need sponsorship? Shambhala Music Festival in Canada, with 10,000 attendees, has no corporate sponsors
  9. 9. Added value of sponsors through money products or goods know how services exposure experience
  10. 10. What do you want from a sponsor? Asking for money requires a different approach than asking for media exposure. Don’t just approach any company. Your sponsor needs to ADD VALUE to the overall event experience. If there is no added value (could come from money, products, know how, services, media exposure), than why are you talking to that company?
  11. 11. WHAT CAN YOU OFFER YOUR SPONSORS? know your own event know your audience = what you can tell potential sponsors
  12. 12. How companies can sponsor your event • Introduce a new product or service • Promote their product or company (branding) • Increase awareness • Join in your marketing efforts • Use your event to impress their relationship with their clients
  13. 13. Know what you can offer your sponsors. Do not promise them something you cannot deliver If you promise sponsors branding opportunities you need to be able to live up to that promise What is your: marketing plan promotion plan website traffic social media data
  14. 14. Overall you need to plan your sponsorship outreach campaign. Keep in mind that larger companies set their annual budget once a year. Think of your event story and make sure it is compelling and worthwhile for potential sponsors.
  15. 15. For more information about event marketing visit You can also follow me on Twitter and Facebook