Generating sponsorship money is an important part of any event — now more than ever. But it doesn’t stop at signing the agreement. As investors in your event, sponsors should be treated as partners. You want to give them meaningful opportunities to connect with your attendees so they find value in their investment and return year after year.
Putting up their logo in a few places isn’t enough! Here are four ways to incorporate sponsors throughout your event:
1. Invite them on stage (or screen)
Giving sponsors time to speak with your attendees is exceptionally valuable — even more so if it’s at a point in the day where everyone is together. Now, you don’t want to offer this sponsor benefit to all sponsors. (More like, your top one or two.) But work with them to carve out a time that makes sense, such as:
- At the beginning of the day or a particular session
- A sponsored break
- Participating in a panel
- Meal-time remarks
Most organizations these days are developing helpful content for their audience. And chances are, your sponsors’ audience is your audience, too, so incorporating the sharing of content in your sponsor packages benefits everyone. This could look like…
- Pre- and post-event guest blog posts
- Playing a video during the event and/or placing their video in a virtual booth space
- A one-time email to all attendees
- Developing a joint white paper, eBook, or guide to distribute post-event
3. Take advantage of technology
The opportunities you have with event technology differ a little bit for in-person and online experiences. When gathered in person, you’ll want to focus on giving your sponsors visibility on any displays (TVs with messaging, presentations, etc.), through your event’s mobile app, and on your event website.
For online events, however, really lean into where you can give them visibility within the virtual event platform itself. Keep this top of mind as you’re talking with different providers, as some platforms include built-in sponsor visibility.
4. Build experiences with them
The best sponsorship activations happen when the sponsors and event planners work together directly to plan something special for their audience:
- A candy bar, crafted drink station, or other on-theme food or beverage
- Host a trivia game and have your sponsors pitch in with prizes and/or questions
- Build a fun-filled photo opp (bonus opportunity to earn some social media activity!)
- Create a scavenger hunt that encourages attendees to visit sponsor booths
If you can plan something more specific to the sponsor, all the better! Whatever it may be, don’t be afraid to get creative. You want to make an impact on your attendees, after all!
Event sponsors provide an opportunity to pad your budget and strengthen the attendee experience. To get back to basics and build a solid foundation for your event’s sponsorship program, download our guide!