How to Get a Product Sponsor

by Joe Burnham; Updated September 26, 2017
Companies often sponsor charitable events with product assistance.

Product sponsors can assist your event or organization by providing products free-of-charge, normally in exchange for advertising their services and marketing goods to the individuals present. While it can take time to secure a relevant sponsor, their involvement can be supremely beneficial when funds or financing are a difficult issue during the planning stages of your activity. While the scope of sponsorship can range dramatically, the process for securing it remains straightforward.

Determine your exact your request. While it’s possible to approach a sponsor without a definite set of requirements, it’s useful to determine a desirable level of resources which any potential sponsor should provide. This enables the sponsor to quickly understand the intended scope of the sponsorship, and provides you with a starting point for negotiations.

Make an extensive list of relevant sponsors. It’s often helpful to examine previous similar events, to determine which companies actively sponsor comparable projects. Research each sponsor on your list, making a note of its typical contribution to clients and the person to whom your request should be directed.

Write a short, spoken presentation about your project. This forms the basis of your telephone conversations when contacting company representatives. The presentation should include a description of your project, your objectives, and the level of exposure it will likely generate for the company. While this is brief, it should allow you to ascertain whether the sponsor is likely interested.

Prepare detailed answers to the most common questions. This demonstrates your preparedness and professionalism. Likely questions include: “Why did you consider us as your sponsor?” “How much of the product are you requesting?” “How has the project been advertised in the media?” and “How many people are you expecting to attend?”

Meet in person as soon as possible. This solidifies the business relationship, and makes the agreement more difficult to back out of.

Keep open lines of communication. Call the organization routinely to clarify any issues, and always provide a reliable means for them to contact you quickly. This is especially true when the project is about to launch.

Review the terms of the sponsorship and accept. Depending on the level of sponsorship, this ranges from being an informal spoken agreement to a fully-detailed contract.

About the Author

Joe Burnham has been a writer since 2008, working with British magazines such as "NME." His articles have been featured in "The Independent" newspaper, London's "Time Out" magazine and "York Vision," where he served as editor-in-chief. Burnham holds a Bachelor of Arts in politics and international relations from the University of York.

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