Last year several of my engagements as a motivational keynote speaker were postponed or cancelled because the event was unable to command sponsorship. To avoid this again this year, I am putting together resources to help meeting planners obtain great event sponsors.
Conference and event sponsors are wonderful organizations (and their people )who give money to support industry events. Many of the events that take place today have signifcant support from sponsors or they would not be possible. Sponsors step forward because they believe in the event and their sponsorship dollar builds goodwill and rapport with an important customer base.
As a marketing communication tool, event sponsorship is one of the most valuable ways to communicate and form relationships. Just about every public event is sponsored in some way.
the International Chamber of Commerce International Code on Sponsorship(ICC, 2003, p. 2) explains sponsorship to be:
any commercial agreement by which a sponsor, for the mutual benefit of the sponsor and sponsored party, contractually provides financing or other support in order to establish an association between the sponsor's image, brands or products and a sponsorship property in return for rights to promote this association and/or for the granting of certain agreed direct or indirect benefits.
Sponsoring events provides a unique social environment that facilitates forming business ties and goodwill. It provides an unparalled opportunity to be around targeted industry leaders when they are learning, growing and having a good time.
Sponsors may put money towards the entire event or they may specifically sponsor a guest speaker, workshop or motivational keynote speaker. They may also be asked to introduce the guest speakers as one of the benefits of sponsoring them.