Honor your sponsors. It’s a tough thing to do.
You need to make your sponsors feel appreciated, but your time is limited and your program is full.
How do you hit all of your goals, keep your audience entertained and still get people out the door by 1:00 pm?
Be creative and have fun.
Use the following tips to put some spice into your thank yous:
- Use the gift bag.
Many companies are very creative with the items in the gift bag. At
some events it seems there is a contest to see which company could come
up with the best item: nail polish, chocolate, tape measure,
pedometer, etc. On stage go through the bag and hold up all of the
fun items and thank the sponsors. I always am happy to do this and
often try to incorporate gift bag items into my program
- Give them an award.
Present the CEO or owner of each sponsor with an award and have every
attendee from that company stand when the award is presented. If you
have the award recipients lined up ready to go, this should be a very
quick process. It also encourages companies to fill their tables!
- Think outside the banner.
Sign-age is great, but don’t be tied to it. One window company built a
free-standing, self-lit, rotating red dress window to be displayed. It
was very unique and the company is invested in being able to use it
again (by sponsoring additional events!) Ask companies to creatively
promote their businesses.
- Ask them what they want.
If you ask if the CEO would like to say a few words, they will feel
obligated to do so. However many of the sponsors I’ve talked with
don’t really want to get up and speak, they’d rather get to the
program. Do they want a plaque to hang on the wall or would a nice gift basket be better? Would they like to have dinner with your
speaker the night before the event? Ask how they would feel valued.
- Pick one.
It’s tempting to thank them over and over, but being thanked well, once
from the stage is enough. Put on a great program. Give them something
to feel good about sponsoring and thank them just once.
Eliz Greene works busy people to improve heart health, so they can work well, feel better, and stress less.
She is a heart attack survivor and the author of the Busy Woman’s Guide to a Healthy Heart as well as 3 other books on wellness. She writes one of the top 50 health and wellness blogs and is a sought-after heart health, stress management, & wellness speaker.
If you are planning a women’s wellness program, workplace wellness program or programs for healthcare professionals check out EmbraceYourHeart.com to see if Eliz would be a good fit with your organization.