By Vicki Zeppa, CMP

There’s a shift in the meetings and events industry when it comes to sponsorship. Sponsors nowadays are no longer happy with just having their logos displayed on a screen.

Who really wants to share their logo with 25 other logos all jammed onto one screen, anyway? Nobody! Nor are sponsors happy with simply receiving a shout-out at the podium from the evening’s emcee. Sponsors are looking for – no, demanding – custom, creative, unique, and experiential or activation opportunities that will allow them to
stand out and bring the WOW factor to events!

Custom sponsorship requires a little pre-work on your part to be successful. But, once you make the commitment to put in a little effort, you will then have a better understanding of what your prospects want. Only then can you customize a proposal
that will get their attention.

So where do you start? The first thing to do is to get rid of the same ol’, same ol’, one-size-fits-all, cookie-cutter sponsorship program that currently exists. If you agree, then let’s proceed!

To get you started on the road to success, do these two things first:

1) Create a targeted list of potential sponsors whom you have already researched and ensured are the right fit for your event.

2) Then ask your potential sponsors:

• What is their budget?
• What are their overall goals and objectives?
• Do they have key messaging/products they want to highlight?
• Are they looking to educate participants about a certain product or promotion?
• Is their goal to provide networking opportunities with their brand and sales team?
• What type of activities are most appealing to them?

When you have had a chance to talk with prospective sponsors, then you can create a customized à la carte menu that suits their needs, is aligned with their overall goals and objectives and, most importantly, their budget.

If you engage your sponsors and use them to help build a better experience for your attendees, you can create the VIP experiences your attendees are craving.

Vicki Zeppa, CMP, is an Account
Manager at Ignite & ADRENALIN and can be reached at vicki@ignitemag.ca.

*Published in MEETING – The Magazine of MPI Toronto Chapter and posted with permission from Vicki Zeppa