How to Write a Killer Sponsorship Proposal
10th April, 2018
How important is a sponsorship proposal?
Once you’ve had a call with a potential sponsor, assuming that call goes well, they will likely ask you to send over a sponsorship proposal. The sponsorship proposal you send them is hugely important.
A great sponsorship proposal gets the client instantly engaged. They should be excited to read it. It should get them thinking about how fantastic the sponsorship could be for their brand.
If the sponsorship proposal isn’t up to scratch, it’s a wasted opportunity. If the content and presentation of the proposal don’t do the opportunity justice, you’ve got no hope of securing the sponsorship deal.
It’s important to remember that the sponsorship proposal will be shared internally with decision makers and that you won’t be there to present it. The sponsorship proposal has to stand on its own two feet. If it’s unclear or confusing, the people reading it will quickly switch off and dismiss the opportunity.
There are two key parts of a sponsorship proposal that must be top notch and work well together: content and design. Here’s how to get them both right…
The content should be clear and to the point. As we’ve said, you won’t be there to explain what things mean so you need to ensure the proposal answers questions, rather than creating them.
The proposal needs to give the brand the information they want, but don’t go overboard and fill it with a million figures and pages of flowing copy. Be clear and get straight to the point. Assume that the person reading it is having a busy day. If there is even one part of the proposal that could let their mind wander, change it up or ditch that part completely.
Focus on the sponsor
The focus of the proposal should always be on the brand and how the sponsorship opportunity can help them. Consider their objectives and ensure every part of the proposal focuses on them above all else.
Tailor it to the sponsor
To do that, you’ll need to tailor the proposal to the individual brand. If you can, ask them about their business and their objectives. If that’s not possible, do your research. Your sponsorship proposal needs to show them how the sponsorship opportunity can help them achieve their business objectives.
What if you’re pitching the same proposal to multiple brands? Preparing tailored sponsorship proposals will take longer than sending one generic one to 10 different brands, but it will be so worth the effort. Think of it like when you’re applying for a job. You can send a generic application to 30 companies in the space of an hour, but you’re unlikely to get many interviews. Or you can take the time to tailor your application to each company and you will see far better results.
The visual element of the sponsorship proposal is just as important as the content itself. You might have the greatest information going, but if it’s poorly presented, it won’t have any impact. The sponsorship proposal should be easy to read and clearly highlight key information. There are five design tools to use when designing a sponsorship proposal. And yes, you can make use of them even if you don’t class yourself as a world class designer!
Visual representations of data allows the information to be clearly presented and easily digested. You could use them to show things like the potential media exposure the sponsor can expect to achieve, the demographics of the audience the opportunity will target, or the anticipated social media reach. The infographic doesn’t have to be overly fancy. In fact, it’s often a case of the simpler the better. If it shows the information in a clear and easy to understand graphic, consider it job done.
Use contrasting colours or shapes to create more impact. Use bold images to complement the text. But don’t use 33 different fonts throughout the sponsorship proposal. That’s a quick way to make it look like a four-year-old’s school project.
Create consistency throughout the proposal by sticking to the same selection of colours and shapes throughout. Think of it like you’re decorating a room: two or three key colours that work well together is great. Add another 23 into the mix and you’ve got a right mess on your hands. If you have brand guidelines or certain colours and fonts you always use, make use of them in the sponsorship proposal.
Make sure text and images are nicely aligned to create an easy flow. You should know exactly how you want the reader to follow each page of the proposal, and the design can make sure they do it in the order you want.
Make sure the text and images are well spaced. Don’t try to cram things onto a page. Decide what is most important and leave the rest out, giving the key stuff room to breathe. Use hierarchy to highlight more information. Don’t tuck the most important message of the whole sponsorship in the bottom corner of the proposal in a tiny font!
Use these tips to help you create a sponsorship proposal that is too good to ignore. If you need help putting your sponsorship proposal together, drop us a line.