Sponsorship opportunities: should sponsorship be viewed as a necessity or a commodity for association events? We argue that it should always be viewed as a necessity – not only to provide financial security but to also contribute to a memorable and enjoyable event.
Sponsors fund the event
While associations often already have some budget from membership fees and ticket sales, sponsors can help by providing additional funding that enables you to take your event to the next level. This extra budget can go towards a larger or more suitable venue, higher-profile guest speakers, or additional commodities that your attendees will appreciate.
Sponsors add credibility to your event
Those more hesitant attendees will often look at the event sponsors (as one of many factors) when judging whether the event will be worth their time and money. Relevant and high-quality sponsors add a layer of credibility to your association’s event that can help you sell more tickets, gain higher attendance, and often aid press coverage.
Credible sponsors can also help you book high profile guest speakers that your audience will be excited to hear from.
Sponsors deliver valuable experiences for your members
When sponsors are sold into the event correctly, they can provide practical experiences that elevate the audience’s experience and make your association members feel like true VIPs. For example, your sponsors may deliver a talk about their industry-leading research or give product demos to your members that they wouldn’t be able to get elsewhere. This works best when you’ve researched beforehand to identify what experiences your members would find valuable.
Sponsors provide unique networking opportunities
Having sponsors at your association events can also provide your members with a unique opportunity to network with those businesses and build professional relationships to utilise in the future. This can be particularly appealing to members when the companies in question are often hard to connect with on a personal level.
Sponsorship Opportunities, last but not least: Sponsors help you market your association to new members
Your event sponsors will only succeed if your event does, so they will often take proactive steps to help you market your event and reach a wide audience. This can put your association in front of new potential members and, as we mentioned previously, add their credibility to your organisation.
Sponsorship should be a key consideration when planning any successful association event. It should be viewed as something integral to the event’s structure, not just as an additional source of funding.
Congrex Switzerland is an established PCO whose in-house sponsorship team has a network of contacts that spans the globe. This allows us to offer ongoing support in all exhibition and sponsorship planning areas. Annually Congrex Switzerland organises approximately 45 events with over 73’000 delegates. Amongst our clients are international associations, governmental organisations and corporations.