Sep 17, 2010

7 tips on how to get sponsors for your event

This is a guest post by Abhishek Gupta and a very important one. The most read post on my blog till date has been on making sponsorship proposals. While I have been exposed to sponsorship proposals as a sponsor I had been waiting for an event organiser to share his experience with us. Abhishek has successfully organised IIM Ahmedabad's largest cultural event and raised millions. (IIM Ahmedabad is the best & biggest MBA institute in India).

Although raising sponsorship money seems like any other sales process, there is a huge
difference in no existing product or service being there to sell in this case. The similarlities - Buyer is sponsor, Seller is the event organizer and Product/ service is the event. Following are a few tips on how we go about it.

Know your offering

First & foremost, believe in your product/ service! You should be
thorough in all aspects about your product/ service. What is the idea? What resources, including people & finances, required? What timelines? Past examples? You got to know all. This might sound cliched but SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities & Threats) could be the most handy tool.

Identify your buyer

Although carpet bombing helps but target bombing can't be avoided.
Find out the agencies planning to enter into market or launch an IPO, as they would have extra budgets for sponsorship. Large sized agencies or agencies with lion's market share already also could be targeted as they have the moolah. Fit between your product/ service user and the buyer target segment is very important.

Know your buyer

It goes without saying that the buyer is listening to only what he/
she wants to. Sell what they buy not what you have. This involves modifying your product/service to suit the requirements or presenting it differently.

Sell & tell something extra to each

Each buyer should feel that something extra,
something innovative is being sold to him/ her. This extra/ innovative could be your USP (Unique Selling Proposition) which no one else is offering. Communicate about your effort to do something extra 'Only for You'.

Be persistent

Don't lose hopes if the first response is not encouraging. Ensure that
you have talked to senior management before taking a final no. Look out for the right hand person of the decision taker and convince him/ her first. Create levels in your organization, such that to show your seriousness to buyer you takeover from your deputy whenever needed.

Lookout for latecomers

Most of the times, 20-30% of the sponsorship comes in the last
few weeks. This is not to advocate wait & watch but just to ensure we don't close putting in our efforts a month or two before.

Leave room for negotiations

Since we approach the buyer and no particular value could
be attached to a sponsorship level, buyer would certainly want to bring down your quote. However, convince them on others buying higher and lower level at higher and lower prices respectively. In other words, make a comparative pitch.

A word of caution

Ensure that everything you talk about/ discuss/ agree is in black &
white and also look for at least 50% payment in advance.

"Know what you sell and Sell what is bought."

About the author

Abhishek Gupta organized the largest business school cultural fest, IIM Ahmedabad's Chaos in 2006 and almost single handedly took the event to new heights. He is now a Principal Consultant in Government Advisory division at Ernst & Young, Delhi. He has over 7 years experience in the consulting industry. His educational qualifications include PGDM from IIM-A and Chartered Accountancy.

Image Credits: graur codrin


  1. Vivek,
    we are looking for sponsors for Durga Puja in Bangalore. Can you please tell me how to approach sponsors?

  2. Shoot me an email with more details. Will try to help you.

    1. I want sponser for my event based on women day organised by moist organisation and savendana ngo can you help me for that

  3. Vivek,
    I am working for an event Mgt firm in Cochin and we are conducting Miss Kerala 2012 @ Le Meriden Cochin in August 16 2012 kindly help me rope in a few sponsors for the title and co-sponsors, preferably from FMCG or Cosmetic Brands.


  4. @Prashat

    I do not provide such services as of now. However we can discuss. Send me an email at vivek [@] allaboutpresentations [dot] com

  5. Dear Vivek,

    I am a Retired Army Officer and I am planning to organise a Desert motor adventure rally in the desert and the semi desert terrain of Bikaner (Rajasthan).In order to boost adventure in that area I need sponsors for such forthcoming events.Please let me know as to how to get good sponsors for my event.

    Warm Regards

    Major Arvind Singh Rajawat

  6. Dear Major Arvind

    You can get in touch with me at vivek [at] allaboutpresentations [dot] com.

  7. Vivek,

    I sent a mail twice and you said you are travelling somewhere and i am sending it again

  8. @Strange Technical Issues: Can you please send your email again. Thanks.

  9. Vivek..
    i am the marketing head of my business economic society
    i want time based sponsorship's..i have the proposal ready(already mailed to you)...we organize intra college events and that is why we arent able to get sponsors as the impressions isnt a huge number !

  10. I am VIT University vellore. We are a team called flying inc we are participating in an event held by SEA AERO division in U.S which we have a build a model airPlane. Please help us in getting the sponsors of this. Looking forward to your reply.

  11. Hi,
    I am suyash from VIT University ,vellore. My team is participating in SEA Aero modelling event which will be held in US . We need sponsors for making the model airplane.We are a genuines team recognised by vit. Please help.Looking forward for your reply.

  12. Swaranjali is going to organise Gharana Festival 2012 for that we need some financial support for the upcoming freelance artistes of different gharna's. Looking forward to get sposnosrship for our festival in 22nd and 23rd Dec in Delhi.

  13. Looking for a sponsorship and Financial Support for the forthcoming Gharana festival 2012 organise by Swaranjali Delhi India.

  14. we have formed an association named bangalore spa association we are enroling all the spas in Bangalore to be a part of , we are thinking how will be able to get or attract sponsors for us so that we can turn it into a complete successs.please help us out...our email id : ,,

  15. Our school is organising an international themed carnival on December 14th at our campus and our budget would approximately be around 1.7 lakhs..our main customers are teenagers and some younger customers and parents..can u guide us with how exactly we go through the sponsorship ppt?

  16. @Chiara Please send me an email on vivek [@] allaboutpresentations [dot] com

  17. We are organizing an 3 days event in Patna,Bihar related to latest technology and startup ideas for the students and IT professionals.
    Need sponsors.@ashish

  18. @ashish Drop me an email on: vivek at allaboutpresentations dot com. What kind of help do you expect Ashish?

  19. hi vivek. i have created a event full of action and stunts. its called parkour and freerunning event. but i don't know how to approach sponsors. and where to approach. and whose gonna help me. i think my event is very unique so i am sending you event details to your e mail. please help me. contact : or or 8460883699

  20. Dear all i am looking for a sponsorship for an event called "Drug Free India" on Dec 31st 2015 kindly help me out in approach sponsors kindly contact us and help me contact:: or Mb : 9964480222

  21. Hello Mr. Vivek,

    I am the founder of 17 yrs old Charitable Organization in Bangalore & we provide shelter,food,cloths,education & homely environment to close to 250 single parent & Orphan m/f kids in Bangalore & providing nutritious meal program in slums.

    and this year we want to support more then 300 Orphan kids & 10 slums with the nutritious food,education & health.
    And we are shortage of funds and for the first time we are planning to organize a musical event
    Where the fresh talents including bands will perform Bollywood, sandalwood 80’s & 90’s songs
    And we can raise funds & help the people in need.for more info about our origination you can check our website :
    Please help us in getting the sponsors of this. Looking forward to your reply.
    With regards
    Manav Charities

    1. Hi. I appreciate the good work being done by your charity. You can email your presentation to me and I can share feedback on that. I do not provide sponsors but help people make better pitches and presentations.

  22. hello people,
    I am conducting a smart make-a-thon event.For building smart home appliances. Any one interested to sponsor. The event attracts nearly 1000 engineering students

    Please contact me

  23. All r invited at FEMAfest.... Do share d page, invite friends and confirm as joining at d page!
    For more detail and for sponership you can contact me :-

  24. Jiya i will organise fashaion show in ahmedabad at July end. so help me for sponcers.

  25. And my Gmail id is

  26. Jiya i will organise fashaion show in ahmedabad at July end. so help me for sponcers.