Sponsoring a hospitality event is a strategic marketing move that can significantly benefit your business, by increasing brand visibility, connecting with your target audience, while also driving growth.
To help you make the most of this valuable marketing opportunity, we have compiled our five key steps to maximise the effectiveness of your event sponsorship, along with some additional insights to help your business get the results that you are looking for.
Be clear in your objectives – Before you commit to sponsorship, define clear and measurable objectives. Whether you aim to increase brand awareness, generate leads, or strengthen existing relationships, having well-defined goals will help you shape your sponsorship strategy and gauge its success. After all, by failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.
Ensure that your objectives are realistic and achievable, considering the resources and budget you allocate to the sponsorship. This will help you maintain a clear focus and prioritize your efforts effectively.
Choose the right event – Selecting the appropriate event is the foundation of a successful sponsorship. The event you choose should closely align with your brand, industry, and target audience. It is vital to evaluate the event’s theme, location, and size to ensure they resonate with your business, and can assist in delivering your objectives. The more closely the event matches your brand values and goals, the more effective your sponsorship will be, and in turn your return on investment will prevail.
Consider the long-term potential of the event. Events with a loyal and engaged audience provide an opportunity for ongoing brand exposure, relationship building, and business growth. Being seen to support key industry events can help to put you in the best position when pitching for new business.
Don’t be afraid to customise – Collaboration with event organisers is key. Work closely with them to customise your sponsorship package to align with your specific goals. Negotiate for additional benefits or exclusive opportunities, such as prominent branding, speaking slots, or having your name against a charitable activity such as supplying prizes for a charity auction. Don’t be afraid to contact the event organisers with your own ideas, just because it isn’t being done, doesn’t mean it can’t be! Think big!
While negotiating, consider the flexibility of the package. This can be particularly advantageous in adapting to evolving circumstances and emerging opportunities.
Conversation is the foundation to success – Sponsorship is not just about brand visibility; it’s also about building relationships. It is important to create a meaningful impact, by utilising the opportunities presented for engagement during the event. Host networking sessions, interactive activities, or be prepared with inspiring presentations that resonate with attendees, enrich their experience and most importantly get them talking about your business.
Focus on creating memorable and shareable experiences that can extend your brand’s reach. Encouraging attendees to share their experiences on social media will amplify your event attendance and create online engagements that go beyond the event.
Another way to increase engagement with your brand is to be a part of, and generate conversation prior to the event. This could be brought about by utilising media contacts to provide commentary on key industry topics relevant to the event, through to arranging interviews beforehand with media who are attending the event, particularly if you have pertinent business announcements.
Evaluate and adapt – Post-event evaluation is critical, and being critical is key! Assess the outcomes of your sponsorship including any media coverage and conversation, identify what worked well, and pinpoint areas that could be improved. Gather feedback from your team, as well as the event organisers, to gain a comprehensive understanding of the overall effectiveness of your sponsorship and what you could improve upon during your next event exhibition.
Use any data and insights you gathered from the event and from the event organisers to refine your approach for future sponsorships. Learn from your experiences and continuously adapt your strategies to maximize your future sponsorship’s impact.
An overview – By adhering to these five core principles and considering the additional insights, you can easily maximise the effectiveness of your event sponsorship. This approach will help you drive results, enhance your brand’s presence within the hospitality industry, and establish valuable connections that can contribute to your business’s long-term success.
Successful event sponsorship is not just about the event itself but also about the lasting impact it can have on your brand and its growth potential utilising key contacts gained.