Sponsors can be an essential element to having a successful event. Wendy Parsley poses the question: what motivates sponsors to spend valuable marketing dollars on your event?

When creating sponsorship packages for your sponsors you need to be cognizant of the objectives so you are prepared to address them. These objectives include enhancing business relationships, the potential to advance their brand awareness, and raising their sale opportunities.

 When working with sponsors there are a few things you may want to be mindful of in order to assist you in having successful sponsorship interactions:

Be Thinking Ahead — It’s never too early to be thinking about next season. Get feedback from the sponsor about what worked and didn’t work. Always be looking for ways to improve your business relationships with sponsors.

Listen to Feedback — If you take the time to gather feedback, you need to take the time to listen to what the feedback says. Those who provide feedback will most likely be able to tell that you didn’t actually listen to their feedback when they assist on the next event.

Keep the Sponsor in Mind — When looking at venues and going through your planning process, make sure you are thinking about your sponsors. Put yourself in their shoes, how would you want to be treated if you were sponsoring an event? This will help make it a positive experience and will show that you care about them if you put thought into their experience.

Follow Up — Keep your sponsors in the loop. Plan on having several follow-up points, try different mediums for following up. Also important, do not follow-up too often or else you risk being annoying and putting stress on that relationship.

Be Sincere — Chances are the sponsor will have questions and you should be there to answer them. Being sincere in your communication will help make the sponsorship deal a successful one. Keep them included in what’s going on. If they are putting money into your events then you should let them know how the events are doing.

 Look at Special Benefits — Everyone loves to feel like a VIP. Give those sponsors the VIP treatment by giving them special benefits whether it be at the event or something prior, like registration for the event.

 Form a Relationship — Creating a relationship with the sponsor will provide everyone with an overall better experience. Depending on the sponsor, they could be approached by a lot of people for money and very rarely have an experience where people attempt to have a relationship with them. Having a relationship will make feedback feel more natural.

Remember, more sponsors doesn’t always mean better for your event. Taking the time to incorporate these elements and having a successful and meaningful event will help create loyalty and ensure that you have a positive experience with sponsors.