In business today, to attract more customers and build your brand, you must first start by creating an image of success and authority. Most customers tend to be more comfortable doing business with businesses that they trust to meet their expectations. If you portray your business to be profitable, most customers will believe that you can deliver what they need.
The same goes for corporate events; if you want your event/fundraiser/non-profit to attract more people, one way to do so is by working with successful brands. Working with big brands, will in most cases, help you increase your audience as most people already relate with those brands. However, it is not always enough to attract big brands to make an event successful; there are various things that must be done when preparing for an event that requires money and, at times, lots of it. You have to secure the venue, pay the event planners, pay the delivery persons, and set everything up for the event.
At times you may not have all the cash needed to set up your event, in which case sending a sponsorship letter may come in handy. Through donations from sponsors, you could be able to set up your event just as you may have envisioned it. By creating a platform for your sponsors to push their brand, they may be more willing to sponsor your event if they believe in your cause.
What is a Sponsorship Letter?
A sponsorship letter is a letter that is written to a business or individual to contribute to an event, fundraising initiative, or offer long-term support to a non-profit organization. The letter is usually written when a business is trying to solicit funding or in-kind donations towards a specific cause.
The sponsorship letter should be written in a way that conveniences your sponsor to sponsor your cause and clearly stating to them why it is worth sponsoring for that cause. The letter must also elucidate the key benefits that the sponsor will be getting from sponsoring that event. The letter should be sent out to prospective sponsors as soon as one has established their budget incentive levels. This will afford the sponsors enough time to consider your sponsorship proposals and make their donations.
Sponsorship Request Letter Templates
When to Use a Sponsorship Letter
There are various instances that warrant the use of a sponsorship letter, including:
- When you are sourcing funding for your event
- When you are looking to host a fundraiser
- When you are running a non-profit organization
- When you are looking to continue your studies
Elements of a Sponsorship Letter
Before you can approach your potential sponsors with your proposal, it is important to first understand the key elements that you must include in your letter:
Short Introduction about yourself: Introduce yourself or your organization, i.e., who you are, and what you do. The introduction part of your sponsorship proposal should be short- it should only describe who you are in a sentence or two.
A brief idea about your opportunity: What are you looking to achieve with the sponsorship? What are some of the direct benefits that you can realistically promise the sponsor by partnering with your event? Your sponsorship letter should paint a clear picture of what you are looking to do with the sponsorship and should also state what the sponsors stand to get by sponsoring you, your event, or your organization.
The reason why you contacted them: The letter should be clear and direct to the point. State why you are contacting the sponsor. Make it clear to them that you are writing to request them to offer their sponsorship. State why reached out to them specifically for the sponsorship.
Brief Information about your audience: Do you have an idea of who your target audience is and how they overlie with the sponsor’s target audience? If not, then you should start by analyzing the target audience to help you determine the sponsors to target with your proposal.
When you will follow up: After sending your proposal: It is important to always follow up to make sure that they did receive it. Make sure to mention when you will follow up and what method you will use i.e., phone call, email, or physical visit to their office.
Things to Avoid in a Sponsorship Letter
When writing a sponsorship letter, there are various things that you may want to avoid in your sponsorship letter so that it may turn out to be as efficiently prepared as possible.
Specific financial help: In as much as you are requesting the sponsor to help you financially, do not mention how much you want them to contribute. Simply state what you are doing and how they can help you achieve what you are doing.
Sponsorship grids and levels: Although you may be tempted to include levels or grids in your letter, it is important to avoid them. Setting a grid or level may deter the sponsor from helping you out with the little they have.
Asking for free products: Do not ask to be given free gifts. Mention some ways in which you will be returning the favor that they are doing for you, such as setting up booths for them, mentioning them in your event, displaying their adverts, advertising their brand in your campaign, etc.
Pictures of your stakeholders: Do not include a picture of your stakeholders in your sponsorship proposal. Your stakeholders may have a positive or negative influence on the sponsor. They may see one or two people that they wouldn’t like to associate with, thereby not sponsoring your event.
Focusing just on your need: Do not make the letter all about you. Don’t be too self-centered and forget to mention some of the ways in which the sponsor will benefit.
Asking for a signature or contract: Do not ask the potential sponsor to sign a contract before they have even read your letter. Give them time to go through your letter and determine if they are interested in sponsoring you.
Best Practices for a Sponsorship Letter
When you are looking to get a sponsor for your event, it is important to start off on the common ground. How do you know the sponsor? Who introduced you to the? Have you met them before? If you were referred by someone close to them or someone that they’ve worked with before, it is important to mention it in your letter. After you have established some form of connection with the potential sponsor, draft a letter and address it to them specifically. Do not draft one letter and send it to multiple prospective sponsors. It is important to analyze each prospective sponsor individually and determine the common areas that you have before drafting the letter.
When writing the letter you want to make sure that you have captured all the right info in your sponsorship letter -especially the information on your target audience. The sponsor will most definitely want to know how your target audience blends with what they are doing. So, make sure that you don’t miss to include it in your letter.
NOTE: Don’t include any unnecessary information in your letter. Only include what you believe is essentially important to the sponsor.
After sending the letter follow up with them. Sponsors usually get hundreds of letters every day. It is important to follow up after sending your letter to make sure that they received it and to get their feedback on your proposal.
When Not to Send a Sponsorship Letter
Convincing someone to give you money is always hard. It is even harder when you are meeting them for the first time. If you don’t have any connection with the sponsor, sending a sponsorship letter may be in vain as they will, in most cases, reply to those that they have previously worked with or already have some form of connection with.
Another instance when not to send a sponsorship letter is when you have forgotten the audience data: when you don’t have enough information about your audience, writing a sponsorship proposal may be in vain. The sponsor will want to know they will benefit from your audience. Make sure that you have enough information about your audience before drafting your proposal.
Lastly, you should not send a sponsorship letter when you don’t have enough time: It is always recommended to send your sponsorship proposal a month o two to your event. This will give the sponsors enough time to review your proposal and also give you enough time to follow up with them.
A sponsorship letter should be short, i.e., one page in length. The sponsor is more likely to read through your proposal if it is short and direct to the point.
You should start your proposal by properly introducing yourself- who you are, what you do and why you are writing the letter.
The best way to ask a company to sponsor you is by finding out a common area that your event lines up with what the company is doing- how they will benefit from your event, and then draft a great sponsorship proposal to pitch them your idea.
Your sponsorship proposal can make a difference in whether you will be able to land a sponsorship or not. Making sure that everything is well captured in your proposal is very important. Whether you are looking for a sponsor for your personal cause, event, fundraising, or even education, it is important that you craft a great sponsorship letter, one that will convince the sponsor that their cash will be put to good use.