The reason most of these large and medium organizations involve in sponsoring your events or projects is because they want to enhance their public profile in a cheaper way. Note that not only Large corporations are holding sway here, even medium sized businesses are jumping in the sponsorship bandwagon and are leveraging on sponsoring everything including local or community sports, health shows, enlightenment campaigns, cultural festivals just to name a few.
Actually there is no event or project that can not be sponsored. But events or projects that often attract sponsors are the ones that add value to the community and indirectly increase the brand image and profits of the organization's products and / or services. Events or projects that bother on health, education, charity, entertainment, art, empowerment, children and gender issues are real examples of what can attract sponsorships.
You can also note that events like Gulder Ultimate Search, Star Quest, Lagos Half Marathon, Argungu Fishing Festival among others have been lucky to attract annual sponsorships.
What are the types of sponsorships that I can take advantage of?
They are two types of sponsorships you can take advantage of:
- Product Sponsorship: Many small and large corporations are comfortable with this. They release their company products to you as an endorsement for your event or project. Examples of these companies are Nestle Foods, Nigerian Bottling Company, UAC, MTN, Zain, Etisalat, Globacom, etc. There are also small organizations in your locality that you can confidently approach for this kind of sponsorship and even sole entrepreneurs that have product offerings who need your events to project them.
- Financial Sponsorship: Companies will release set aside funds to you for your event or project as long as it is an community impact-driven project. The amount requested should be rather specific and every step of your analysis of how the funds will be used should be clearly stated. Examples of funding companies are British Council, Nokia, UAC, Chevron, Texaco, Mobil, British Tobacco Nigeria Ltd, Guinness, Nigerian Breweries, Nestle, Wampco, Ford Foundation, Unilever, GTBank, Ecobank, There are also a whole lot of small and medium companies waiting to be approached with your sponsorship proposals.
Am I eligible to Land a Sponsorship Deal?
The painful truth is that it is almost impossible for an individual to land a sponsorship deal. Companies are more comfortable dealing with sponsorship proposals from an outfit, either governmental or non-governmental outfit. So make sure when you are sending in a sponsorship proposal, it bears the name of an outfit whether registered or not, and this covers religious groups, clubs, NGO's, educational institutions, private registered business, etc. Now we get on to the next section, how to get that winning sponsorship.
How then do I get that winning Sponsorship?
What you simply need to make sure your sponsorship sails through is your Proposal. I recommend that you send in your proposal at the beginning of each quarter because that's when most companies review their financial books. Now you need to follow up on your proposal except the company states that they would get back to you. But one secret you should take note of is trying to cultivate a platonic relationship with the officer-in-charge, probably outside the office zone.
The first thing to do is to draft a brief but meaningful proposal to the organization of your choice. What is essential is that your proposal should indicate how your event or project can move their brand forward and paint the company's image in a good light. But how do you write a winning sponsorship proposal?
Now you must realize your proposal will have to fight for attention among the hordes of other proposals that these companies receive on a daily basis. You must be apt in your write up, make it at least a page or two and keep it simple. Take note of the following tips to write that winning proposition.
- Your Headline - this is the subject matter of your proposal content. Write an headline that is direct and one that can sell itself. If you can not write one, find a good copywriter who can do it for you.
- The Project / Event - In writing your proposal, this should be first. Be clear in explaining what your event is all and avoid giving out details that would not help stipulating your project or event purpose clearly.
- The Target Audience - Explain clearly what your project is going to target in the public.
- Type of Sponsorship you seek - describe the type of sponsorship you need either product or financial sponsorship
- Sponsorship benefit - Explain in your proposal what the sponsors stand to benefit because they would only put money where their mouth is.
- Introduce your outfit - having completed the above, then you typically describe what your outfit is all about and why you are embarking on the project.
- Proposed event date - Highlight when the event or project for sponsorship consideration is scheduled to take place. If you do not do this, you might be taken for a ride, meaning they will take their time pretty well.
- And the last is your cover letter - Attach your cover letter which must be signed by whoever receives it from you.
Then how do I make money from these sponsorship deals?
You can strike the gold pot in two ways: First, after executing the event / project successfully, you do not need to refund any left over money. It's all yours. Secondly, you make extra money by gate-takings, where you promote your event using the popularity of a known brand as your major sponsor. You can make this a 50-50 deal with the sponsor but in some cases sponsors do not even care about this part.
Before sending in your proposal, research on the company of your choice and know who is in charge of handling sponsorship issues.
Be prepared for Presentation
Once your proposal is accepted, do not be done hanging when called to do a presentation of your event / project. Be ready before that time and get all your facts right.
Just like I advised earlier on, get the phone number of the officer-in-charge (if you can) to enable you to follow follow up within and outside official hours.
The only thing that can stop you is yourself. So go on and get that sponsorship deal for your events or projects.