Take as much time as you need to prepare for your first approach to a posible auspiciador/sponsor.
For this Receta you must match the characteristics of potential SOPA sponsors with the strengths of your station.
Who can be a sponsor? Think about your station’s target audience. Which businesses are interested in reaching that target? Whose products or services align with the interests of your audience? Which are the businesses that are close to you?
Make a List
Meeting with key people can help you collect information, make recommendations and develop a list of potential auspciadores/sponsors.
- Development Director and Development Staff: Find out what businesses or corporations already sponsor special events, donate services or premiums for membership drives, are members, etc.
- Station General Manager and other Department Staff: Remember the more information you gather, the better for your list. Do not be afraid to ask; everyone knows someone that can be a sponsor.
- Board of Directors & CAB: If you are a community-licensed station with a Board of Directors and Community Advisory Board, meet with them. Explain your SOPA and Marketing Plan using your power point presentation. Ask them to collaborate with you in obtaining prospects.
- Major Donors who are individual supporters but are part of corporations may be willing participate in the SOPA. They may also refer you to others in their industry or business circles that can help.
- Business Leaders: You may know or be referred to business leaders who are not yet supporters of the station. After you make a presentation to them, end your meeting by asking for the names of other potential participants in your SOPA.
- Potential Sponsors: brainstorm on your own by looking at ads in newspapers, other media, billboards, and the phone book (yes, they still exist). If any business there is a potential match to the interests of your audience, add them to the list.
Research Your List
From all the information you gathered, make a prospect list for your SOPA. You should have a large number of contacts so put them in priority order, from most to least likely, hottest to coldest. Information is power so research each prospect before you contact them. It is vital to have all the correct, complete contact information. Visit their websites, google them and familiarize yourself with their products or services. Use a database to keep track of their sponsorship history, your outreach, etc. There are programs available, some stations use customize their membership data programs, other use Excel spreadsheets. Tracking data will help you develop future strategies.
Set a Goal
When you establish a goal, it must be realistic, something you can achieve and it must be measurable. From the list of potential sponsors, set a goal. Let’s say you are going to make 5 calls per week, 3 visits per month, send 2 emails weekly, or a combination of them. Or you can establish a monthly monetary goal based on a realistic assessment of your sales potential and how much revenue a spot can generate.
How will you work to meet the goal. For example, if you are going to make 3 visits per month: 1) are you making a schedule?, 2) are you requesting appointments through telephone calls or emails?, 3) where are you meeting them, at their office or giving them a tour at the station?, 4) do you need your General Manager in the meeting?, 5) what are you going to present to your sponsor? There is no one way of doing this. Just put down a structure that works for you and your station.
Get Ready for the Next Steps: You’ve prepared yourself strategically and technically to start approaching sponsors and making them friends of the station. The next Receta will point out how to prepare yourself personally.