It is never too EARLY to start looking for sponsors. 70% of large corporations decide their annual sponsorship budget between Sept-Dec, so the summer is the perfect time to start building relationships with potential sponsors, to ensure you are included in their budgets.
Sponsorship takes time to approve and activate for most large corporations. Make sure to confirm the approval process during the discovery stage. Activation may require help from other departments, which will require extra time to plan and implement. Don’t forget the time it takes you to develop your proposal and research a potential sponsor’s needs. It all takes time.
In our experience, the smaller the asks (less $), the less time required for sign off, though there are always exceptions to the rule.
To avoid disappointment, give yourself 6 months to a year depending on your ask. The bigger the ask, the longer it will take.
Here are some tips on how to speed up the process and why it is important to engage potential sponsors earlier
- Identify the Decision Maker. This can take time initially to confirm, but will save you time in the long run. Be prepared to be passed to several people before you connect with the right person, but once you find the decision maker, the approval process will be shorter.
- Budgets. As mentioned above, 70% of sponsorship budgets are set between Sept –Dec. If you are not included in their budget, depending on your ask, you may have to wait another year, so start building those relationships now.
- Target Market. Be clear on who your community is so your potential sponsor can identify their target market instantly. This will speed up the sign off process, making it easier to justify internally.
- Needs & Goals. During the discovery meeting or call, you will want to identify your potential sponsor’s goals & needs. If you can support them in reaching these goals for the year, you make their life easier and yourself indispensable.
- Check List. Provide a checklist of everything you need to commence the partnership - everything from logos, company background, graphics, dates, etc. Give your sponsors time to collate.
All of the above will speed up the sponsorship process. Be prepared, sponsorship will take longer than a month or two before your event. Respect your sponsor’s time; if you rush them they will automatically say no. Start building your relationship with sponsors NOW - it is never too early. Of course, there are exceptions to the rule and if you only need one sponsor, you might get lucky.
If you are looking for a more hands on approach to sponsorship, sign up for our workshop in Milton on June 14th. This workshop is perfect for those not sure where to start or those looking to get more than one sponsor. Sponsorship takes longer than most people expect, don't be left short of time and revenue. Sign up today http://www.mooresgroup.ca/services.html
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