This week’s blog is re-posted with permission from Aaron D. Wolowiec, MSA, CAE, CMP, CTA. Aaron is the founder and president of Event Garde, a professional development consulting firm based in Grand Rapids, Mich. Website: www.eventgarde.com.
When’s the last time this happened to you? There’s a highly recommended, world-class speaker you’d like to feature at an upcoming program.
She’s perfect for your event in every way, except for the associated price tag. After much negotiation, you’re able to secure the “friends and family” discount; however, it’s still more than you’ve budgeted.
If your meeting comprises a qualified audience of planners or other decision-makers, you might consider an in-kind sponsorship with a local hotel or conference center. Following are 11 ideas for partnering with local venues:
Select three venues that might like to showcase their property and reach out to them directly with the understanding that this partnership will be secured on a first-come, first-served basis
Allow venue to give tours/sales kits following the program
Encourage two to three venue staff to participate in the program and to be available during registration, breaks and meal functions to engage with attendees
Recognize venue as the title sponsor in promotional materials (e.g., print, website, social media, magazine, email)
Give venue a couple of complimentary registrations to parcel out to potential clients; venue could make these VIP experiences with a complimentary overnight and breakfast before/after the program
Give venue the complete participant list before/after the program
Allow participants to register at a discounted rate if they complete a brief meetings portfolio survey that is then shared with the venue
Allow venue to set up a booth near registration
Allow venue a three-minute introduction, video or slideshow to kick-off the program
Encourage venue to host breakfast/lunch; during this time, a venue representative should be assigned to each round to meet and engage with participants
Ask venue what other deliverables they would like to receive [perhaps association-related products and services] and do your best to share whatever you can
What other ideas do you have for successful partnerships between venues and associations?
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