Corporate fundraising: making the approach
Overcome your fear of cold calling and approaching businesses with this simple toolkit, which is based on a blog written by Nicole Newman for Creative Partnerships Australia.
How many times have you been politely brushed off when approaching companies for sponsorship? Or had your emails ignored? Or don't know where to start?
As more organisations seek sponsorship, it seems the corporate sector is putting up more barriers to communication. Identifying the right person to approach, least of all engaging them in a conversation, is becoming more difficult.
But there are ways to get noticed. This quick guide gives you five simple steps to follow in order to achieve a positive response.
Do your research
- Are you approaching the right business for your offer?
- What are their business objectives and challenges?
- Do you share the same customers?
- Does the way they present themselves — on their advertising, website and social media — connect to your organisation?
- Look at specialist press and view the company's annual accounts on the Company's House website. They will help you get a good insight into the business culture and help you assess if your project is relevant before approaching them.
Find the right person
This can be tricky as companies no longer give out names but a little persistence can work wonders.
- If companies don't list contacts on their website, use LinkedIn or Google their Marketing Director or Advertising Agency.
- Failing that, the press section of a website will have a contact name.
- As a last resort, call the CEO's PA — they almost always answer the phone — but take care. A sales call will not be appreciated but an invitation to a high-profile event will be welcomed.
- Invite the PA rather than the CEO to your event. It’s a very effective way of getting to know a company before making a more formal approach.
Download the full toolkit:
Corporate fundraising: making the approach (PDF)