I had the best time sponsoring David Neagle’s Accelerate Live event last week! Here is a picture of me at my table – the money tree was a BIG hit!
What is your strategy to connect with new people when you’re at events? This is such a big part of the process when out speaking and exhibiting that often gets overlooked.
Read on to learn the “5 Essential Steps to an Effective Sponsorship.”
My mentor once said, “How you do anything is how you do everything.” Taking a close look at the strategy you’re using when you’re in front of your ideal client is key. Here are 5 strategies I share with you on how to make your opportunity a success.
- Get clear on your intentions for the vent. Do you want to connect with more people to grow your database, are you wanting to fill your practice with more clients, etc.? These questions need to be thought out well in advance in order to create the strategy for your table. It will differ depending on your intentions.
- How can you engage people to stop by and have a conversation with you and your team? You’ve likely been in a situation before yourself where the people at the exhibitor booths are salesy and even a little scary! You’re repelled by their behaviour and want to rush past without even making eye contact! Know that other people have had similar experiences and are also therefore hesitant to “stop by” your booth. How can you make inviting so that people what to pop by? Having a conversation at your table is the start to you determining A) if this person needs your help and B) whether or not it’s someone you want to work with. It doesn’t need to involve being “salesy” or uncomfortable.
- Have a team. Have a team. And have a team. I can’t stress the importance of this enough. For the event I sponsored last week, I actually flew out my personal assistant. It was worth every cent. She knows my business and me (my latte order was waiting every morning – yes!), and I therefore didn’t have to spend the time training her on my business. You want to set yourself up for success by having the support there who can assist you in having conversations, especially when it gets busy. At one point we had so many people asking us about the money tree, that we were actually missing people. You may even want to consider having more then one person assist you depending on the size of the event. Your assistant can help you collect names and determine who may a good fit for you to speak with. They can also assist in some of the follow-up right on site.
- This brings me to the next tip. Follow-up. This is a huge part of generating new business that often gets overlooked. Someone mentioned the other day that almost 80% of people sponsoring events do not follow-up! Isn’t that crazy? Talk about sabotage. Schedule in the time to follow-up right when you make the decision to speak / sponsor the event. Actually, make sure you have the time to follow-up before you even make the commitment to begin with. It’s that important. I remember I scheduled two sponsorships back-to-back once, and I did not have the time to follow-up from the first event before heading to the next. It was a big lesson. So, make adjustments in your calendar and spend the time doing this. You have likely just made a big investment on the opportunity to begin with, and make sure you spend your due diligence afterward.
- Don’t discount your fellow sponsors. Be the expert you are and step into this place fully. Of course you can help the other sponsors (if they need and want your help of course). I witnessed a conversation last week between two sponsors that amazed me. One sponsor was clearly looking for the other sponsor’s help. BUT the other sponsor said things like “I’ll offer you a program – just kidding” and “I wouldn’t do that to you”. Clearly there were some issues around sales going on there. This other sponsor wanted that person’s help and was practically handing her credit card over.
Be aware. You can help anyone and everyone is a prospect. Be who you need to be.