Avoiding Common Association Sponsorship Mistakes

Oct 30, 2023

Sponsorship can be a vital source of funding for associations, providing the financial support needed to host events, develop programs, and achieve their goals. Sponsorship can also provide valuable opportunities for brand exposure and partnerships, which can help associations better serve their members and the community.

However, it’s important for associations to carefully consider and approach potential sponsors to ensure that these partnerships are mutually beneficial and align with the values and goals of both parties.

By avoiding common mistakes and following best practices, associations can effectively seek and serve sponsors and build long-term, successful relationships.

Not doing enough research.

Not thoroughly researching a potential sponsor’s business and values can lead to a misalignment of goals and expectations. Be sure to take the time to understand the sponsor’s needs and how your association can best meet them.

Failing to personalise the proposal.

Sending a generic sponsorship proposal to multiple companies is a sure-fire way to get rejected. Take the time to tailor your proposal to the specific company and their goals to show that you have a genuine interest in partnering with them.

Not offering enough value.

Sponsors want to know what they will get in return for their investment, so be sure to clearly outline the benefits for the company. This could include exposure to a targeted audience, brand recognition, or the opportunity to align with the values of your association.

Neglecting to follow up.

If you don’t hear back from a prospective sponsor, don’t be afraid to follow up. A friendly reminder email or phone call could be just what they need to reconsider your proposal.

Failing to deliver on promises.

It’s important to follow through on the benefits and deliverables promised to the sponsor. Failing to do so can damage the relationship and discourage future sponsorship.

Not showing appreciation.

Sponsors want to feel valued and appreciated for their investment. Be sure to thank sponsors for their support and show them the impact of their contribution.

Not reviewing and renewing the sponsorship.

Sponsorships should not be viewed as a one-time transaction, but rather as a long-term partnership. Be sure to review and renew the sponsorship on a regular basis to ensure that it is meeting the needs of both the association and the sponsor.

By avoiding these mistakes, associations can effectively seek and serve sponsors and build long-term, mutually beneficial partnerships and secure the funding and support needed to achieve their goals and better serve their members.

If you are looking for support to optimise your partnership programs, please contact Julian Moore from SMS at [email protected].