10 Interactive Sponsorship Ideas for Engagement
As a sponsor, the most important outcome of an event is to receive maximum visibility. This seems like a no-brainer, but it can be challenging finding ways to change up the traditional branding tactics to something that physically engages your audience.
Keeping in mind that social media has become the key player in visibility, here are our thoughts on how to create a unique and memorable event experience for both your attendees and your sponsors. Read about how to incorporate your sponsors in a virtual event.
Interactive Event Sponsorship Ideas
- The Mini Experience
- Mental Health Break
- Branded Swag
- Social Media Tags
- Juice Break Puns
- Interactive Photo Ops
- Branded Networking Lounges
- Raffle Giveaways
- Sponsor Meet & Greets
- Cell Phone Charging Station
Keep reading for a deeper dive into how to implement each of these interactive event ideas, engaging both your sponsors and attendees at your upcoming events.
With the high and often rising cost of conferences and meetings, your attendees will be looking to engage in a series of experiences rather than just sitting through the standard general session (GS) and breakouts. One impactful way you can achieve this is by curating a themed space for your audience by playing up the uniqueness and flavor of the city where your event is being held.
For instance, if your conference is taking place in Florida, you could either take your breakout session somewhere outside to really give your attendees an authentic Florida experience or you could turn one of the venue's rooms into a sponsored indoor beach party. To do this, simply set up light weight hammocks, beach furniture, and tiki power “bars” and your attendees will start to feel the Flordia ambiance.
Healthy activities have become all the rage at conferences. One way you can offer health benefits while also creating a memorable experience, is an experiential yoga class with giveaways. To help your attendees stretch and relax, provide them mats with sponsor logos or branded sports towels that they can take home with them after their yoga session. You can even have some fun and create sweat bands with an embroidered logo from your sponsor. Having your attendees leave with useful swag is key in visibility, especially if it is something that they will use in their daily routines long after your meeting has ended.
The most obvious way to make your sponsor known is having branded swag - and lots of it. Right as your event attendees walk in, make sure that they have the opportunity to choose their own branded swag, ranging from shirts to coffee mugs. Encourage people to use their new swag at the event and set up stations throughout the venue where attendees can pick out a new swag item. Handing guests a branded bag right at the entrance will encourage them to want to find all the free things that they can.
Once attendees have received their swag, and hopefully put on their new shirts, sweatshirts, hats, etc., encourage them to post pictures of themselves with their new swag and post it on social media. The most effective way to get people talking and engaging with an event is through social media. Encourage event attendees to post themselves at the event and tag the sponsor. Include an incentive where if they do post a picture with the sponsor tagged, they earn a prize. Make the incentive higher by encouraging people to post a normal tagged post, versus just a tagged story post that expires within 24 hours. With more people tagging the brand, more people will see the social media activity and click on the brand to learn more.
Set up juice stations outside of your sessions and have your attendees create then name their drinks. While they mix and match the provided ingredients, they also must name their juice, playing off the sponsor (preferably using puns such as Hershey’s Good Morning Kiss, for an early morning session). Those names can be loaded into a touch screen and people can vote on their favorite, with the winner receiving a special sponsored give-away.
Whether a custom structure featuring floating logos or a series of actors disguised within a hedge wall, an interactive photo op is one of the most prominent and long-lasting opportunities for sponsor visibility. Long after an event has passed, people will often look back at their pictures to stir up their memories and remember the event. With sponsor logos in the background of each picture, it will be hard for event attendees to look back on the past event without remembering the sponsor as well.
A popular sponsored item is the network lounge. Encourage attendees to sit and talk with one another at tables covered in sponsor logo decals, snap photos with custom branded throw pillows, or just take a moment to relax and debrief between activities. Your lounge area can be as elegant or casual as you see fit. Offer guests custom glasses or coasters to take home with them after the event has ended. These keepsakes will help event attendees remember the name of the sponsor after the event has ended.
When attendees first check in for the event, offer them a raffle ticket for a raffle drawing at the end of the event. Letting them know that the raffle is at the end of the event encourages them to stay until the end and gives them the opportunity to fully enjoy all the other interactive engagements. Offer the raffle winner a branded item, but make it epic. Whether it be a branded iPhone cover or a shirt for their dog, make the raffle giveaway something that attendees look forward to and offer them a sponsored product that they will want to continue to use long after the event is over.
A brand can sponsor any event - but why this event in particular? Set up a meet & greet station where event attendees can meet with a representative of the sponsoring brand. Here, the rep can share why they chose to sponsor the event and what they enjoy about the organization that is hosting the event. This gives attendees more of an idea of what kind of opinion other brands have on the event organization, and what sort of values the sponsoring brand has.
If a day-long event is being held, it is inevitable that someone's phone battery will die. Frantically walking around the event trying to find a wall socket to plug their phone into, attendees will breath a sigh of relief when they notice a cell phone charging station. With the sponsor's logo plastered all over the charging station, people will be forever grateful to the sponsor for thinking of including a cell phone charging station at the event.
Whether platinum, gold, or silver, there are many other interesting and interactive engagement opportunities you can offer your sponsors. Just remember knowing your sponsor’s demographic is just as important as knowing your own.
Want to read more about how you can reinvigorate your existing sponsor partnerships and entice prospective sponsors? Uncover four more ways to make a big impact on sponsors and attendees.
Why is Sponsorship Engagement Important?
Sponsorship engagement is important because it grows the relationship between your organization and your sponsor's organization. When clients see this relationship, they recognize that these two organizations have similar interests and may begin to associate one company with the other. Additionally, products and messages can be integrated fluidly, allowing each business to grow with the added knowledge that the other business brings.
Furthermore, sponsorship engagement can help ease the financial burden of events for your organization, while providing the sponsoring company with more visibility. It is important to develop strong relationships with sponsors to engage in a mutually beneficial relationship.
Benefits of Sponsorship
Sponsorships are a mutually beneficial relationship. Sponsors are able to showcase their brand, newest products, and capabilities to audiences that may not typically be within reach. On the other hand, having the support of sponsors can help organizations pull off events and create better engagement opportunities for meeting attendees.
Sponsorships can also enhance the theme of your event through customized graphics, digital experiences, food and beverages, and sessions. Even though these items may be sponsored by a different organization, they can still play in nicely with the theme of the day's events and enhance the attendee experience.
Let's Elevate Your Events for Sponsors & Attendees
Are you interested in hearing more impactful tips and info about how we can help you plan your next event? For a deeper dive into how the LAI Live team can help you to design competitive and compelling interactive event sponsorship packages for your 2019 shows, contact our team today!