Big business for corporations and expositions
Sponsorship is a relationship between two parties where both seek equitable benefits through an exchange of products, services or funds. It is a business relationship and should be mutually beneficial to the sponsored and the sponsor.
Trade shows are a bonanza of sponsorship opportunities. However, sponsorship is also very different from advertising. Sponsorship is not a solo adventure, the way advertising is. It promotes a company in association with the sponsor's name.
There are six main reasons why companies embrace sponsorship:
- image enhancement
- driving sales
- increasing visibility with positive publicity
- to take on a “Good Corporate Citizen” role
- to differentiate from one’s competitors
- create new business relationships, and
- informal networking
Media sponsorships can be essential to a public shows success. Many consumer show producers seek a relationship with the dominant television and radio stations, and the major newspapers in the market. Media sponsors provide valuable advertising exposure at little or no cost.
Sponsorship works best in the context of a relationship. You will often see the same companies supporting the same events year after year after year. This synergy creates a special, unique ‘brand’ for the duration of the event, a brand that the buying public begins to count on and expect. Make sure you inquire about on-going sponsorship opportunities, as well as cross-promotion opportunities.