Can you afford to sponsor Wimbledon? 10 opportunities for small businesses

Sponsorship of sporting events like Wimbledon can be considered the exclusive domain of the big boys at IBM and Hertz. But sponsorship should also be considered a worthwhile investment for small firms. There are plenty of excellent opportunities for small businesses that don’t cost the earth. So it’s important that you strike the right deal.

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Here’s our top 10 insights to get the most out of sponsorship.

1. Free goods – provide free goods and services in exchange for exposure that sponsorship brings, there’s always a deal to be done.
2. New on the block – if you’re a new start-up, sponsorship can help spread the word about your presence and establish your position in the market.
3. Set objectives – consider the rewards you want to reap; boost sales in the short term or raise your profile in the long term.
4. Get the right fit – the decision what or who to sponsor establishes an immediate association with that organisation or event so choose carefully.
5. Marketing plan – agree a plan to maximise your exposure with your sponsor, e.g. co-branding, joint PR and plan the campaign to run from pre to post event.
6. Keep it local – community initiatives can get good publicity and create valuable goodwill by sponsoring local sports and charity events.
7. How to sponsor – it can be as simple as a food producer sponsoring a local rugby team through purchasing the kit in exchange for shirt branding.
8. Networking opportunities – whether it’s at a rugby game on the touchline or at a business breakfast at an exhibition, make the most of networking.
9. Connect online – there are opportunities to sponsor email newsletters and via advertising space on a website which can build engagement and drive visitors to buy online.
10. ROI – your return on investment won’t necessarily translate in to pounds, but you can measure an increase in sales, website enquiries, newsletter subscriptions.

In summary, sports and charity sponsorship are common marketing strategies. And if you pursue corporate sponsorship at an exhibition, you can be considered an expert in your field!

We want to hear about your sponsorship successes, share them in the comments section below or on Twitter.

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