How to Make the Most Out of a B2B Sponsorship – #Soslam Style
These days, it’s all about stretching a B2B marketing dollar and sponsoring an event is no different. Your company has paid good money to support an event you believe in – why stop at having your logo listed on some signs and the program? You can do more! Using MLT Creative’s recent sponsorship of the SocialSLAM VIP Party as an example, read about what we did to make the event a success, to inspire you to do the same!
But first a little background…
For the second year in a row, MLT Creative has been a part of the ever-growing socialSLAM conference, in Knoxville, Tenn. The annual event was held last Thursday and Friday at the Knoxville Convention Center, and Glenn Taylor, Sarah Young, Elizabeth Baker and I made the trek to support our friends, Mark Schaefer and the Social Media Club of Knoxville team.
This year, MLT Creative sponsored the VIP Party, hosted at 90 Proof Nightclub in Old City, the night before SocialSLAM. A big kudos to Nicole Denton and her team for planning the entire VIP Party, so all that we had to do is show up (but not empty-handed, of course!) The event was a sold-out success!
We recieved great feedback from party-goers at the conference the following day, but Mark said it best:
“I'm sure you are already seeing the reports on Social Slam but it was ... epic.
The VIP party was tremendous. Fantastic feedback. Thanks to the MLT team for adding the special touches to the event. I feel that we really rose to a whole new level and I'm very grateful for MLT's support in so many ways." (Thanks Mark!!)
Follow in our footsteps below to maximize your investment in an event sponsorship:
Step 1: Prior to the event, make sure your company logo is everywhere it could possibly be – on the event website, in the promotional emails, positioned in any literature at the main event and in any planned follow-up communications.
Step 2: Produce giveaways (branded, of course) that are unique and fun to bring with you to trade as currency for introductions (or simply as an icebreaker). We created these "I Got Slammed at SocialSLAM" temporary tattoos and applied them at the party. We had hoped someone would be brave enough to wear a tattoo on their forehead, but alas, no.
Step 3: Develop some sort of activity that generates buzz around the event and gets people talking about you/your company. To earn these one-of-a-kind, limited-edition SocialSLAM shot glasses, party-goers had to answer three social media-related questions, and have their answers filmed by an MLTer. (More on that to come later!)
Step 4: Arrange for a picture-taking area, whether it’s a step-and-repeat (or just a “step”) or a photobooth. Plaster your logo all over this real estate. When people take pictures in the designated area, they’ll keep the photo (and thus your logo) around.
Step 5: Leverage photo and video content during the event (by posting to all of your social networks, with the event hashtag) and after the event on your company website and blog (just like this post!).
Step 6: Be sure to talk to people so they know you and your company, if only briefly. It helps to have interesting business cards (or drinks) to hand out.
Step 7: Have fun! It is a party after all.
Stay tuned for upcoming blog posts with entertaining interviews we conducted at the SocialSLAM VIP Party!
Kelly Cooper is B2B marketer and a senior account executive at MLT Creative, an Atlanta-based B2B marketing agency.