Corporate sponsorship is a win-win situation for both the nonprofit and supporting corporations.

Corporate sponsorship can be a great way for nonprofit organizations to further their mission. Giving USA’s 2019 Annual Report detailed that corporations gave a total of $20.05 billion in 2018. These dollar figures clearly indicate that there are tremendous opportunities out there for nonprofits to do business with their corporate colleagues and acquire the funding they need.

For this reason, corporate sponsorship is essentially a business transaction, with mutual benefits for both the nonprofit and for-profit organizations. In this relationship, the nonprofit organization receives funding and support and the sponsoring corporation receives increased visibility, brand building, and a boosted reputation.

To acquire sponsorship for your nonprofit, you will need a corporate sponsorship strategy to get noticed. It is important to do your research and get to know what motivates corporations to become involved with nonprofits. Take into account the reputation and core values of the corporation you wish to partner with since that will reflect on your organization. Find out the best way they will benefit from this approach so you can outline specific incentives to compel them to work with you. With this knowledge, you can start to plan your approach. Here are a few tips to help bulletproof your sponsorship strategy and receive the funding you need.

Tell your story.
Your organization has a story to tell. To gain corporate sponsorship you will have to clearly define your mission, display your successes, discuss your plans and showcase your metrics.

A few great ways to do that is with an impact report, your strategic plan or presentation that includes graphs, record numbers, and metrics to convince your benefactors to provide the sponsorship you need. These also serve as great leave-behind items that showcase your professionalism and give corporations your story in their hands.

Show successes AND areas that need improvement.
Highlight your biggest triumphs and include your areas of improvement without remission. Both tell a powerful story. One shows your successes and the other showcase your attitude towards growth and that you are planning for the future but need additional support to complete your mission. Remember, transparency is key in building and maintaining the trust of corporate sponsors.

A great presentation.
Corporations expect to see professionalism. How you present yourself to the corporations you are pitching is crucial to how they will perceive you. Your appearance, deck, marketing materials, negotiation prowess, etc., are all contributing factors. Pouring some additional time and funds into these areas will give you great ROI.

Final thoughts

Remember, corporate sponsorship is essentially a business transaction. It is a win-win situation with mutual benefits for both the nonprofit and for-profit organizations. To acquire sponsorship, you must devise a corporate funding strategy to get noticed and get the funding you need. Make sure to present yourself in a professional manner. Be completely transparent and tell your story, share your successes and be honest about the areas that need improvement, and most importantly outline the specific incentives they will get from this collaboration.

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