Sponsorship Sales, Property and Benefit Services
Sponsorship sales, or sponsorship fundraising, is a core competency for the Pitcher Group. We can help you with every stage of the sponsorship solicitation process from developing property and benefit plans, to lead generation; and from prospect meetings, all the way to sponsorship fulfillment. The following are Pitcher Group sponsorship services:
Sponsorship fundraising is truly about associating companies with elements of your organization and about providing relationship building opportunities with your stakeholders. So, unlike charitable fundraising, you can present almost all of your programs and facilities as sponsorship opportunities, not just those that require additional funding. The Pitcher Group can help you identify and create properties; bundle properties to make attractive opportunities; develop a properties map that shows the relationship between opportunities; and price properties to the market.
To provide true sponsors with the value they typically expect can require an investment in benefits of 15-20% of a property’s sponsorship fee. In addition to exposure benefits, companies will have an interest in sales and promotional rights, entertaining opportunities, employee and customer perquisites and service benefits. The Pitcher Group can help you to identify benefit opportunities within your organization and to create an inventory of integrated and selectable opportunities that can be tailored to each sponsor. We can also help you consider the cost and value of each benefit to provide opportunities that are affordable for your organization and yet, attractive to sponsors. Our goals with benefits are to help you sell more sponsorships (or sell them more easily), and to attract higher fees for each of your sponsorship properties.
It can be difficult to know how much cultivation you need to do before pitching a sponsorship opportunity. Fundraising organizations often pitch too early in the solicitation cycle resulting in being turned down by potential sponsors. Likewise, with companies sometimes taking months to reach sponsorship decisions, knowing if you and your team are making enough progress to achieve your fundraising goals on time can be a challenge. In this case, fundraising organizations sometimes respond too late to adjust their strategy in time. A Moves Management and Sales Pipeline system can help you address both of these challenges. Moves management identifies how far each prospect is in the solicitation cycle and identifies tasks for moving prospects each step of the way from initial contact to final decision. A sales pipeline takes that solicitation cycle information, and calculates your overall probable results to let you know in advance whether you are likely to achieve your goals. The Pitcher Group can help you develop a moves management and sales pipeline system tailored to your organization.
On those occasions you need to identify additional prospects for your sponsorship program to be successful, Pitcher Group research partners can conduct a prospect identification program for you. By examining support of competitive organizations and other factors, we can provide you with a list of prospects with a demonstrated propensity to support your initiatives.
The best source of information about a potential sponsor is from the prospect themselves. The Pitcher Group can assist you with this direct discovery process. However, sometimes you may require detailed information about a prospect prior to meeting a company. Pitcher Group research partners can provide you with detailed prospect profiles. These biographical reviews examine affiliations, financial capacity and precedents and areas of interest relevant to sponsorship.
One of the best ways to improve your sponsorship offerings is to test your ideas with potential sponsors. The Pitcher Group can help you validate your sponsorship program and provide recommendations for improvement by conducting a series of one-on-one interviews with those most likely to support you. Akin to the feasibility study in charitable fundraising, this research exercise can also provide the first step in the solicitation process with the participating companies. Often the access and feedback you get in this exploratory stage is difficult to gain later.
It can be useful, particularly when supporting volunteers such as a board members, to know the fundraising activities and success of other organizations in your vicinity or those doing similar work to yours beyond your community. The Pitcher Group can provide you with scans of your competitors (and partners) or even detailed case studies of particular organizations and programs. Our goal is to help you learn from the efforts of others and to adapt to marketplace conditions.
If you have a prospect that you are meeting for the first time, you will likely want to engage them several times before asking them for money. With a Moves Management strategy in hand, the Pitcher Group can help you develop and deliver the activities that cultivate your prospects.
A sponsorship proposal is an investment prospectus for a marketing opportunity. The Pitcher Group can help you develop proposal content about your organization and properties. In particular, our proposals typically include supplemental requests for additional opportunities beyond a base request. Again, our goal is to help you maximize your success.
Whether you need something quick and serviceable, or of professional design standard, the Pitcher can assist you with solicitation materials. We offer solutions crafted by either our fundraising consultants or our design and writing partners depending on your needs. Beyond graphical design, we focus on the functional characteristics that your materials should include to maximize your success. For example, we look at when you should and should not use projected presentations. Our functional and graphical design services include introductory leave-behinds, presentation visual aids, proposals and more.
The Pitcher Group approach is to act as one of your team members, ready to participate in any task. We will not go ask for money on your behalf without you, but nor do we expect to sit back and just give advice while you do all the work. As such, we can assist you with solicitation calls. We can participate in any stage acting as technical experts or full pitch-participants. Our goal is to make sure you have all the resources you need in a solicitation presentation.
When negotiating a large sponsorship agreement, it is important to involve your organization’s legal counsel. However, it is also important to know what issues unique to sponsorship are likely to come up during negotiations or during the life of the sponsorship term. The Pitcher can help you anticipate these issues and provide your legal counsel with recommendations from a practical perspective to complement their legal perspective.
Property Pricing Audits
There are several different methodologies that can be used to price a sponsorship property. Many organizations start with amounts of funds they need to generate. However, the value of your properties, how your competitors are pricing opportunities and what sponsors are prepared to pay must also be considered. Sometimes, a prospect will require a thorough justification of a sponsorship fee with quantification of the value derived from each element of a property and each benefit offered. This process includes counting and valuing each sponsor logo impression — separately calculating the value of any audited advertising opportunities. Property pricing also requires quantifying the value of all other sponsor perquisites. The Pitcher Group can provide you with a third-party audit of your sponsorship pricing whether that be a marketplace comparison or a full benefit-by-benefit value analysis.
One of the most valuable exercises for maximizing your new and renewed sponsorships is a Stakeholder Impact Analysis. This study asks your stakeholders such as customers (or users) about their awareness of, attitude towards and interaction with your sponsors. High scores in these areas provide you with a strong rationale for securing sponsorship funds. Testing prior to a sponsorship followed by re-testing following a sponsorship provides direct evidence of the impact of your sponsorship opportunity. The Pitcher Group can help you conduct this pre-testing and post-testing. We know the ways which this information can be collected efficiently, and the kinds of questions to ask to be able to provide sponsors with information they value.
Your best future prospects are often your current supporters. This fundraising potential makes good benefits fulfillment vital to your ongoing fundraising success. In fact, you want your sponsors to take full advantage of all of their sponsorship benefits. The Pitcher Group can help you ensure good benefits delivery on your part and uptake by your sponsors. In addition to assisting with the delivery of benefits, we can maintain an inventory system of benefits used and still available.
A good post-sponsorship reporting process to your supporters provides you with the perfect opening to discuss new sponsorship opportunities. The Pitcher Group can help you develop a reporting methodology that excites sponsors about their participation. We can also design a report document, assemble needed information and draft report content.