If you’re ready to sell sponsorship, you’ll need a great sponsorship pitch deck to capture the attention of a prospective sponsor.
You’ll include your sponsorship deck when you reach out to a prospective sponsor for the first time. The information in your deck sets the stage for the sponsor’s decision to invest in a relationship with you. You may receive a call-back if you make a convincing case. If not, your inbox will be empty and calls unanswered.
What’s in a sponsorship deck?
Most sponsorship decks have the following sections:
- About Us
- The Opportunity
- Activation Ideas
- The Investment
However, before sending out someone else’s sponsorship deck, customize these sections to each prospect. It’s a buyer’s market, and sponsors have many options beyond your proposal. Cookie-cutter decks not designed to solve a prospect’s unique problem land in the Trash folder.
To avoid cookie-cutter status, we have a few tips to customize your proposal and get your prospect’s attention:
When the sponsor reads the About Us section, they see a solution to their business challenges.
In this section, you will describe your organization, program, or event. Of course, you’ll want to put yourself, your organization, or your program in the best light. However, keep in mind the sponsor is looking for two things. They want to know if you are sponsorship ready and if would you be a great partner to carry the sponsor’s message to your audience. They also need to see how your brand compliments their brand. The prospect is looking at what you and they have in common.
The prospect sees its customers in your Audience section.
The “Audience” refers to your fans, members, event attendees, listeners, or other groups you serve. The audience description represents the most critical part of your sponsorship deck. It helps the prospect determine if your audience matches its customers. Through your surveys or internal marketing data, you should describe your audience’s gender, age, residence, and household income. The prospect also wants to understand your audience’s attitudes, hobbies, interests, and behavior. These clues will reveal whether your audience will purchase the sponsor’s products or services.
The Opportunity directly addresses the prospect’s business challenges.
In this section, tailor your opportunity to the needs of the sponsor. Some prospects need to increase sales while others need to improve their brand image. If you don’t know their needs or your research didn’t provide enough clues, take the opportunity to ask them.
Indicate how the opportunity achieves the sponsor’s return on investment. If your audience is ready to buy the sponsor’s products, it should be clear how the sponsorship connects these dots. A sponsor logo on your website may not be adequate to achieve the prospect’s goals, but an email campaign with product offers sent directly to your audience may.
You offer a unique activation idea.
Sometimes it’s hard for a sponsor to visualize how they can use your sponsorship opportunity to achieve their business goals. Successful sponsorship decks often include creative ideas to help them imagine putting your sponsorship into action. It could be a co-branded social media campaign integrating the sponsor into your content. You might also have an impactful event marketing proposal that catapults your sponsor ahead of its competition.
You may (or may not) include the Investment with appropriate pricing.
When you identify the price of your sponsorship in the deck, it’s called the Investment because you’re convincing the sponsor that spending money on your sponsorship is equivalent to investing in the sponsor’s business success.
If your sponsorship deck is your first outreach to the prospect, it serves as an introduction. You should not include the Investment because you don’t yet know what the prospect needs or wants. (Just like you would not send them a t-shirt without knowing what size they wear.) If you are at the proposal phase, often called the “sponsorship proposal,” you include the Investment for the specific opportunities in your proposal.
Sponsorship pricing can be tricky. However, if you keep your pricing in line with comparable sponsorships, you’re halfway there. The key is to understand the value to the sponsor of the benefits achieved through your sponsorship opportunity. For example, a sponsor would pay a premium for a sponsorship it knew could result in $1 million in new sales.
Templates are great to get things started. However, finding the right template is only the beginning. Customizing one to your prospect’s needs will be the difference-maker to help you find sponsorships.
Related: Three Things About Sponsorships: Proposals