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Small Biz Matters – a half hour program each week where you can work

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Your Sponsorship Dollar

With Alexi Boyd from Boyd Office Management Services

When times are good businesses start to think about sponsoring local causes and looking at this as either another way of advertising or a way to iprove their social responsibility

Today we’re looking at local sponsorship. This is actually a really cost effective way of increasing local sales; cost effective because is often cheaper than “buying the right” to use something like the McGrath Foundation logo on your material.

There are a few reasons why you might consider sponsoring a local cause as part of your business:

  • You’re encouraged by someone in your family
  • You want to increase awareness of your business locally
  • You want to increase local sales
  • You want people in the local area to know you’re socially aware
  • You’re just trying to do something nice
  • You have a strong belief such as a political alignment and want to incorporate it into your business

Part 1 – Which causes do you align with?

  • This is a really important question.
  • Make sure the cause you choose makes sense with your business category. For instance if you’re a ballet school it makes no sense to sponsor the local netball team.
  • Find out what causes your direct competitors are sponsoring and try to be different, or perhaps similar. That’s a business decision for you to make.
  • Firstly, as with all advertising you need to think about your target market. If you build granny flats for instance even though mums and dads in a wealthy area you’re your target market you don’t want to sponsor a school in an area in which each house doesn’t have the room to swing a cat.
  • This is a sad point to make but check they haven’t been in the “news” for any reason such as embezzlement etc etc. THAT’s not a good look
  • Find out who their other sponsors are and make sure that makes sense to align yourself with the right businesses as you don’t want to be seen next to a dodgy operator

Part 2 – Getting Value for Money

  • Make sure they give you a list in writing of HOW they’re going to advertise your business.
  • Numbers are a really important factor here. You need to know stats. How many people attend events, how many facebook followers, how many people on their email list, how many hits on their website?
  • They need to be organised and give you a valid tax invoice
  • You should have a specific person to be in contact with so if you have any concerns you can go to them individually
  • You need to find a cause that is well known to your target market AND in the area in which you live. It can’t be too obscure.
  • Make sure you supply the right materials too – a very high res logo, the CORRECT web address and contact details and your positioning statement (BOMS is Practical strategies to improve business productivity)
  • As usual you should shop around. You wouldn’t just go to the most expensive printer in town, you would ask for several quotes, it’s the same with your sponsorship dollars
  • The organisation needs to be organised VERY CLEAR about what you’re receiving in exchange for your sponsorship dollar. As with all and you need to trust that they say they’re going to do with your money. Perhaps the first time you might consider asking for evidence of how they advertise you.
  • You should expect a certificate of appreciation so you can display in at your place of work but ALSO ask for their logo so you can add it to your website as a sponsor.

Part 3 – HOW do you support?

  • Its not just about the money, you might offer free services like:
    • Graphic designer doing layout for them for a programme
    • Tradesmen offering services (make sure you check with your insurer before going ahead with this)
    • But of course if you do something other than give them money you can’t receive a tax invoice for this.
  • Make sure they give you a list of HOW they’re going to advertise your money
  • Well organised causes will give you a set of packages and options to choose from, perhaps a specific event
  • Talk about extending your sponsorship and perhaps after an event you’ve been a major sponsor for there can be a brand reminder such as the product you helped purchase for the school having your name on it
  • NO ONE should be coming to you and simply demanding money with no explanation as to how they’re going to use it
  • Find out how your money is being spent – how does the cause split your dollars? Are they 100% going to a specific