If, for example, you are holding an event for the first time and your largest annual donor gives you $25,000 per year, don’t set up a title sponsorship for your event at the $500,000 level… you’re not going to get it. On the other hand, many organizations that do have large donors will hold annual galas and price their top sponsorship at $1,000 or $2,500 thus underselling what could be a very lucrative avenue for additional revenue.
Setting Your Sponsorship Levels
When setting sponsorship levels, look at your overall event goal. Assume that you will raise at least 50% of your overall fundraising goal through sponsorships (if not more). Thus, if you want to raise $100,000 from your event, your sponsorship goal should be in the $50,000+ range. Set your sponsor levels accordingly. In this case, you’d want to have a top sponsorship slot of at least $15,000 – $20,000 in order to reach your overall sponsor goal.
Naming Your Sponsorship Levels
Name your sponsorship levels in a way that highlights either your event theme or your organization’s work. For example, if you are holding an event to raise money for a school, you could name your sponsor levels: Scholar, Essayist, Author, Contributor, Friend. If you are holding an event with a garden theme your sponsorship levels could be: Rose, Tulip, Petunia, Daffodil, Daisy. If you can’t come up with anything that ties into your organization or event, you can also use naming conventions like: Platinum, Gold, Silver, Bronze.
Providing Benefits to Sponsors
Each sponsor level should include a distinct group of benefits for the sponsoring company, individual, organization or family. These benefits can include:
Marketing Opportunities – What marketing and advertising opportunities can you offer your sponsors in return for their sponsorship?
- Event and pre-event naming opportunities
- Inclusion in press releases and event programs
- Signage at the event
- Recognition by event speakers from the podium
- Press availabilities
- Recognition on the organization’s website
Event Benefits – What event benefits can you offer your sponsors in return for their sponsorship?
- Tickets to the event and to any VIP receptions at the event
- Reserved tables at the event
- Inclusion of a sponsor representative as an event chair or co-chair
Be creative in planning your sponsor benefits. Not every sponsor will receive all of the benefits outlined above, and obviously the higher a sponsor’s donation is, the more benefits the company or individual will receive.