By Chris Myers
Selling sponsorship can be fun, but for most people it is a lot of hard work where you hear the word “no” a lot more often than “yes”. Sometimes the “no’s” can come from a property just not being ready to sell sponsorship. However, a large portion of them come from the seller not screaming the fit between the property and the potential sponsor in every level of their sales pitch.
In this blog we offer some advice on how you can showcase fit in three key areas of your sales process.
In order to maximize fit in the prospecting phase of your sponsorship selling process you really have to take a strong internal look at what you stand for and what kind of partner you want to position yourself with. That internal look can vary based on the entitlement level, the asset (pre-game party vs. charity gala), or by category. As you are prospecting look to the sub-categories of fit as a guide to make sure you are evaluating each potential prospect against your fit. Do they market like you do? Does the prospect believe in the same community principles as you? Answer some of these questions and you can either eliminate prospects or start to really dig deep so that your initial cold/warm reach-outs have meat on the bone and can speak to why a partnership makes sense. Then you can showcase that fit in the next phase of the sales process.
Decks should be customized. End of statement. How you customize them can set you apart from other properties pitching to your prospect. One way to set yourself apart is to steer your proposal around your fit. Every level of the proposal from the about us section, to your audience metrics and even assets (which we will get to next), should all be steered towards the fit. You want the buyer to not just say wow this is a great sponsorship, but wow that is a great sponsorship that fits us in a “X” number of ways. Let them worry about the price only after they have been teased by all the wonderful benefits that your fit will provide them.
Every sponsorship comes with assets, or benefits, that the property provides to enhance the world of their sponsor or get them the ROI they desperately need. If you break down selling from prospecting, to the proposal, down to the meat of the engagement the assets are really where you can instill a strong fit. Find ways to tap into the sponsors motivation. Is it awareness?, CSR?, ESR?, or are they just looking to sell products. Are you presenting them the assets that will meet those needs? If you have a prospect who is not a fan of activating at events that feature alcohol, maybe don’t present them with the fan party entitlement.
Every cold call, every meeting, every pitch should be layered in why the partnership makes sense for both parties. You need to be selling the fit between you and your prospect. Make them see it and your odds of getting that next meeting, and bringing you one step closer to closing the deal, is at your fingertips.
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