Have you ever noticed what conferences, networking events and even some special television programs have in common? Ok, we know…you probably haven’t given that strange combination of things much thought until now. :-) But bare with us, we have a point here…
What can you do to support a cause or an event even if you don’t have the time to be physically present? Sort of like putting your money where your mouth is.
We’re talking about sponsorships.
Think about the organizations you are involved with. Or maybe there are organizations you would like to get involved with but you just don’t have the time or the energy to commit to the cause?
Now, you could just sit down and write them a check and be done. And we would agree that would yield some good Karma. Don’t get us wrong, financial support is important! And you will feel good about your gift; not to mention the charity you donate to can continue doing their good works.
But we want to challenge you to think of your support for these organizations a little more strategically.
Are there any organizations you can support that would not only do good things for the world but also help get the word out about your business? Here are just a few ideas to get you thinking:
1. Sponsor a conference for a trade or professional association.
2. Subsidize a program at your local community college.
3. Create a scholarship for someone in your target market to attend a conference, workshop or seminar.
4. Provide “in-kind” donations to an organization in your industry like a workbook you wrote or a CD you created.
5. Host (and pay for) a well-known speaker to visit your Chamber of Commerce or networking group.
6. Collaborate with several businesses to establish a foundation that serves your market in some way.
You might be thinking, “But my business is small and I can’t afford to do any of those things.” Believe us; anything you can do, even on a small scale, makes a difference. Think about throwing a small stone into a lake. Those ripples go on and on, longer than the eye can see.
Sponsorship activities give your business a lot of bang for your buck. Not only will you be doing good things for people, you will be positioning yourself as and a leader in your community and maybe even your field. This strategy also gives you “inner circle” access to other leaders and decision makers, who now have the opportunity to get to know, like and trust you. So the next time, they will be the ones calling you!—————————————————- Kelly L. LeFevre