Awating your sponsorship

Awating your sponsorship

“He who refuses to embrace a unique opportunity loses the prize as surely as if he had failed.” -William James

Do all small business books hint at bartering or is it just me? I am getting the feeling after my 5th book that to get ahead you must barter. This says to me that networking is a must to get ahead. Who you know will account for how you grow your business; if your pockets aren’t as deep as the sea.  So how do you get all the advertising mediums in one service? Wouldn’t this be too many IOUs to be worth your while?

One of the most confused terms applicable to marketing is events. Not many outside the realm of marketing think of events as a subset of marketing, but it is. It’s the opposite of how sales and marketing are completely different, but that’s another story by itself. Don’t get me started on the job positions that list sales and marketing as one unit… My rant would go on for days…

Events are a stand alone system that allows for companies to allocate funding to achieve; print, TV, radio, online, and viral advertising. How good does that sound? This is why I am amazed that there is not much corporate spending on events. Yes events are a one time deal, but most well-run events will generate advertising for months to come.

So how does this all work? The basic run-down to any event is a system of marketing tools that allows for maximum exposure in all media possible. This system includes, who you know haha.. No no. It includes press releases, campaigns, musician promotions, and many more. When you start an event you look at your target market, much like any marketing plan. The next step is to decipher what type of entertainment your target market leans towards. E.g. 21-25 year old, female or male, will on average lean towards dance-beat music because its part of the current trend and there generation. So now you have desirable genre, next you match an artist to the event who has a large following. These two sources by themselves will generate sponsor worthy exposure. Yet a good event manager will leverage this exposure into other mediums. This is usually done by press releases and lots of phone conversions. What the sponsor gets is the ease of sitting back and letting the event manager deal with the logistics while collecting the advertising output.

Companies seem to miss that events are cheap! A sponsorship for an event which can generate exposure in all mediums ranges from free to $1,000 depending on the event (Sponsor dollars will increase with larger name acts, venues etc).  What this gets the sponsor is not only the advertising mediums but hassle free advertising that accounts for little risk with high return. Let me give you an example of a sponsorship I recently did.

Sponsorship Cost: $1,000 + some product donation

The Return: Three print magazines articles, four TV mentions and one raffle, 700+ locations holding logo placement, 45+ online mentions with back-linking, direct brand exposure with 500 attendees, 4 radio mentions, and product sales.

The TV alone was gifted at $2256.  Maybe I should be asking for more? All kidding aside the event business is a very profitable medium of marketing. Events have also not been hit by the recession on a grander scale. It’s a win-win right? Well events do come with some risk… Although even small or poor run events will still get some exposure.

The risk of events is within the trust you hold to your location, your event manager, and your attendees. Any sponsor should rely on the wisdom of their event manager or the event company that they work with. If you want to jump into sponsorship this is what I suggest you look for:

  • Sponsorship Package
  • Past event portfolio
  • Booking experience (Find out more on booking by reading my “Customary entertainment business” blog)
  • Size of the venue
  • Past and current sponsors
  • Social Media Presence

This list could go on but those are what I suggest you take a look at first.

So if it is this easy why aren’t more people doing it? There are thousand of event shows each day that go un-sponsored… Does the connection between the event and the sponsor need a kick start?