As event planners, our job is to figure out how to boost ROI and enhance our organization’s brand value all at the same time. Sponsorship is one of the best ways to achieve these goals. 

But some event planners think of sponsors with a one-and-done mindset instead of thinking of them as event partners. This is obviously shortsighted. Yes, event sponsorship is an exchange of products and services, but to build a purpose-driven and sustainable partnership, you’ve got to provide these partners with real value.

Why Bother Trying to Get Event Sponsors?

Admittedly, it takes work to attract and retain event sponsors, and we’ll get to those specifics in just a moment. But let’s first discuss why you should put in the effort. What is it that event sponsors really offer your company and event?

The following are the 3 biggest reasons reaching out to event sponsors makes sense:

A Bigger Budget

Planning and hosting an event costs money, and a LOT of it. By attracting sponsors, you increase your cash flow, which means you have more capital at your disposal to leverage. This leads to a better attendee experience and the chance for the best possible ROI.

Broader Reach

Other companies know that becoming an event sponsor is a great way to get themselves in front of a new audience. Interestingly, partnering with sponsors does the same thing for your company. Your sponsors will use their social media pages, blogs, press releases and email marketing to advertise their presence at your event. This means they will essentially be marketing your event for you, getting your company in front of a whole new audience.

Gain Credibility

Bringing the right sponsors onboard will increase your event’s credibility tenfold. Big, relevant sponsors in your space provide valuable social proof that can elevate your brand’s image.

6 Ways to Attract and Retain the Right Sponsors

Now that we know why having sponsors for your event offers some pretty big benefits, let’s dive into the ways you can attract and retain them:


You don’t want to attract any old sponsors to your event, you want sponsors that align with your organization’s goals and vision. Mismatches can damage your brand image and your event.

Perform some significant research to understand as much as you can about prospective sponsors. In addition to their company website, dig into the CEO’s LinkedIn and other social media accounts to find information that will help you make a good decision.

Define Your Event Objectives and Understand Theirs

You need to fully understand what your own goals are so you can clearly communicate these to prospective sponsors. At the same time, you must understand the prospect’s business goals so you can meet those as well.

 Asking for sponsorship may be seen as a weak pitch. But going into the conversation with a clear agenda and mission, a plan of how you will reach your goals, and how this partnership will benefit both of you shows your professionalism and is an incredibly attractive pitch to sponsors. 

Measurable ROI

The age-old saying, “money talks” is very true. Just as your executives want to know what kind of return they can expect from the financial investment, your prospective sponsors want to know the same. Help them to understand the kind of numbers they can expect. 

A good way to do this is to pull some historical data. How did past event sponsors benefit by partnering with you? These metrics will help you entice the right sponsors to view your partnership as valuable. Also, share any past sponsor testimonials. 

If this is your first sponsored event, then offer up some other numbers, like how many will be in attendance, foot traffic, size of your emails list, social media followers, etc.

Make Them Feel Important

Be sure to let prospective partners know that lines of communication are open for them to ask any questions they may have after your initial contact. Share other aspects of your event with them, ie what’s on the menu, who will be the entertainment and guest speakers. Let them know they are open to share their ideas with you so they can feel like an integral part of the planning process.

Provide a Special Experience

To retain sponsors and form a lasting relationship, your goal should be to engage them and keep them happy. Go beyond the outdated scheme and space model and provide them with an extraordinary experience: 

  • Offer advanced setups and systems
  • Wow them with incredible technical amenities
  • Exceed their marketing expectations, brand visibility and exposure
  • Present sponsors with event data

Ask for Feedback

When your event has ended, be sure to reach out to your sponsors to get their feedback. You can use this feedback to tweak and adjust your sponsor strategies for the following event. This shows your commitment and desire to build a mutually beneficial relationship.

The Wrap

Attracting and retaining the right event sponsors will definitely take some work, but it will be totally worth it. In the end, you’ll benefit not only yourself but your sponsors as well, forming a long-lasting alliance. 

Reach out to us if you need help planning your next corporate event. We help clients optimize their ROI while delivering exceptional experiences.


Corporate Event Management
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