It always seems impossible, until it’s done. – Nelson Mandela.
Does your non-profit need to diversify your fundraising? Corporate sponsorship remains a largely untapped financial resource for many organizations. Your nonprofit needs to diversify funding and corporations need to amplify their sales, marketing and community presence.
- Your sponsorship prospects are closer than you think. Consider hosting a prospect discovery session to uncover the relationships that exist between your organization, stakeholders, and the corporations to which you are connected. This can be an ad hoc group of “connectors” inviting your vendors, stakeholders, and VIP customers to a prospect research session. Once you have your prospects identified, create strategies to engage those prospects.
- You must get close and personal. Begin your prospecting sessions with the end in mind: getting the names of corporate contacts you can solicit, and the commitment from your connecter to make an introduction. Your goal is to get a face-to-face meeting (optimal) or a phone conversation with your prospective sponsor.
- Digital/ Social media are among your strongest commodities. Continue to build strong, responsive and loyal online social platforms as they are great opportunities to link your sponsor directly to their ideal customer. I’ve worked with many organizations who have built their sponsorship program strictly on the benefits they can offer through social media.
- Signage and logo recognition are passé. Think about it ….do corporations like Pepsi really need your help to promote their logo? Look to offer more creative benefits that align with your corporate prospect’s brand and ultimately help them drive business.
- Offer diverse opportunities for corporate sponsors to partner with your brand. New sponsors may be reluctant to take on your top tier opportunities until they have a sense of if the partnership will generate a return on their financial investment. I don’t encourage you discount your value, but do encourage you to consider developing a range of smaller sponsorship packages that serve as the prelude to larger opportunities.