When you sponsor something, you are financially supporting a person, organization, or cause. Sponsorships are considered to be the fastest growing form of marketing in the U.S. and also represent one of the most powerful networking and relationship building tools for your factoring and commercial finance consulting business. Recognizing good opportunities for sponsorships and arranging to participate in them will allow you to meet and network with very large numbers of potential referral sources and even prospective clients all at one time.
Though sponsorships often involve some form of charitable cause or philanthropic event, the financial contribution of the sponsor is almost always provided with some financial benefit in mind. In other words, sponsors expect a “payback” for their support and a great example of such payback would be the “Bankers Bash“.
The Bankers Bash example below is a case study of an actual event held annually by a very successful factoring broker. It’s a unique sponsorship but one that virtually anyone can organize with some time and effort.
Bill, a factoring broker, belongs to a popular service club in his community and over time, has worked his way into a position of leadership and authority. One of the club’s primary annual fundraisers is something called the “Bankers Bash“, a charitable golf tournament made up of teams strictly from the local banking community. Bill has worked hard to get put in charge of the BASH. He knew it meant having the opportunity to meet and build relationships with dozens of local loan officers and other bank employees each year. Once in charge and in typical “Bill” fashion, he decided to make the BASH bigger and more popular than ever. He was going to give away a car by having his company sponsor a “Hole-In-One” contest.
Bill contacted an insurance company that offered promotional hole-in-one insurance and found he could purchase an insurance policy for about $1,000. The insurance would cover the cost of a popular $40,000 -$50,000 German import in the event a participant made a hole-in-one. This was well within Bill’s annual marketing budget so he quickly purchased the insurance for the event. After a call or two, he found the local import auto dealer was more than happy to have one of his bright red sport coupes on display at the event which would be parked right on the on the grass next to the par 3’s tee box. As an added bonus, the dealer even offered to pick up half the cost of the $1,000 hole-in-one insurance policy.
Although Bill was an avid golfer, he did not play in his own event. Instead, he set up shop right on the par 3’s tee box so he could meet, greet, and shake hands with every banker as they tried to win the car. He had coolers of refreshments available and gave each contestant a free sleeve of “lucky” golf balls with his company’s name and a four leaf clover boldly imprinted on each ball.
The “BASH” was a networking and relationship building BONANZA for Bill!
Setting up and organizing a “killer” sponsorship such as the Bankers Bash will take some time and effort. You will first need to elevate yourself to a position in a fraternal or community club / organization where you can earn the right to run the event. Clubs that have a strong number of business owners will be very interested in this type of promotion since it not only raises funds for the “philanthropic cause of the day” but also gives the club members a chance to meet the bankers in the community since these events are typically followed by a BBQ or dinner event of some kind where prizes are given out for winners and opportunities abound for club members to network.
For factoring brokers, working towards a “Bankers Bash” sponsorship may take some time and effort, but successfully overseeing and managing this type of promotion year after year will entrench you solidly as a mover and shaker in the community and can literally turn you into a six-figure producer in a very short time.