Exhibition and Sponsorhip: Finding funds is one of the key challenges when organising annual conferences or similar events. Recent research shows that 75 percent of sponsors are always on the lookout for new partnerships, which means meeting planners and organisers have many possibilities to establish connections that bring value to all stakeholders. But since the conference exhibition and sponsorship sector is very competitive, there are certain things organisers should be doing to stay ahead of the game.
Related: The Importance of Conference Exhibition and Sponsorship
How To Attract Conference And Exhibition Sponsors
One of the keys to securing conference and exhibition sponsorship is aligning the goals of organiser and sponsors. For sponsors, it’s all about exclusivity and personalised treatment, so make sure your proposal for exhibition and sponsorship meets these expectations and includes:
- About you: what makes you stand out as the organiser, what value does your company bring to the market, what are your achievements and engagement strategies.
- About the audience: how well do you know attendee event demographics and how exactly will the event cater to their needs.
- About the market: show you know current industry trends and the sponsor’s place in the market
- About the amount requested: include a detailed breakdown and how you expect this to contribute to the event’s success.
Make it about the sponsor: A survey showed that most decision makers expect sponsorship to help them showcase their products and services, draw attention to social responsibility, and create visibility and brand awareness. Therefore, proposals must make it visible how each of the above is relevant to the sponsor’s values and goals and must be supported by data, as sponsorship is a business decision.
Go the extra mile using multiple sponsorship channels, like online newsletters, blogs, and social media. Incentivise the audience to engage with the sponsor’s products and services by highlighting shared values and objectives.
Don’t aim too high if you’re a startup or your company is not well known. According to this infographic, the average sponsorship package is $12,000, but it may be better to split the total amount between different potential sponsors and request smaller amounts that are more manageable and less likely to be perceived as risky.
There is strength in numbers, so smaller/newer companies should consider partnering with other co-organisers, including some that are already established or known to potential sponsors.
Related: Four Ways Of Increasing the Success Of Conference Sponsorship
Sponsorship Solutions For Social Events That Deliver Value
Traditional solutions like booths, on-site, and online banners must be complemented by creative and high-exposure solutions with a focus on social interaction, engagement, and brand activation. The goal is to create a social event that facilitates face to face interaction and drives visibility. Some examples include:
- Sponsorship opportunities that promote interaction with event attendees, such as sponsored pre or post-event webinars.
- Event networking or matchmaking software that allows attendees to schedule meetings with sponsors.
- Sponsored social influencer meet-ups or parties before or after the event.
- Sponsored WiFi, event apps, online registration, or other tech solutions that solve common pain points for attendees.
- Sponsoring a branded section of the event’s website where attendees can find educational/informative resources.
- Scavenger hunts where the sponsor’s booth is one of the check-in spots.
- Adding the sponsor’s logo to mobile charging stations, quiet zones, or relaxation lounges.
Don’t forget that although engagement is a qualitative aspect, it can still be measured, so plan sponsorship opportunities thinking about how precisely the sponsor can measure results. This is often done via click-through rates, social media metrics like post reach, social media profile likes, impressions, video views, mentions, comments, retweets, session duration, etc.
Implementing the suggestions listed in this article can help your conference and exhibition sponsorship strategy remain useful beyond the day of the conference, attract and retain sponsors, and improve your chances of event success, and brand recognition.
If you need professional support planning your annual conference or event, get in contact with the exhibition and sponsorship specialists at Congrex Switzerland. Let’s take your conference to a new level!
Congrex Switzerland is an internationally operating agency delivering customised solutions. This encompasses the overall organisation of conferences and meetings including the management of hotel rooms and the strategic consultancy. Annually Congrex Switzerland organises approximately 33 events with over 73’000 delegates. Amongst our clients are international associations, governmental organisations, and corporations.
If you wish to receive additional information about Congrex Switzerland, please feel free to contact us.