7 demands to make for a sponsorship deal

But first a word from our sponsor ….

As many fundraisers have learned, sponsors very often want to have many words, including the first, the last and most of the ones in between.

During the recent Association of Fundraising Professionals’ international conference, Shaun G. Lynch, president of Adventum Philanthropic Marketing in Quebec, said that sponsorships can pay big dividends, but those on the nonprofit side must remember that businesses are very much out to make a profit. They are businesses doing business.

When it comes to negotiating sponsorship deals, Lynch offered the following key points:

  • Don’t allow the sponsor to cap its commitment on a cause-related marketing tie-in.
  • Retain the right to use the sponsorship income as the organization sees fit.
  • Specify up front how in-kind payments will be valued. Remember that products and services cost the sponsor less than the price paid by their customers, and avoid dollar-for-dollar valuation.
  • Define sponsor categories narrowly. For example, instead of one financial services sponsor, seek a bank, a credit card, an investment advisor, an insurance company.
  • Control your mailing list.
  • Define the costs a sponsor must bear.
  • Specify the sponsor’s fulfillment responsibilities. Examples include supplying artwork on time and within specifications, delivering samples to the event, sending inserts to go into promotional packages, setting up tables or A/V equipment, staffing the sponsor’s booth.