This is a guest post from Elise Hanslip. Elise is the Marketing & Communications Manager for event-tech company Entegy.

Innovative technology has transformed the onsite experience at conferences and similar events. The costs, however, can be prohibitive for some. But what if your event tech could pay for itself? 

It’s entirely possible to offer registrants a mobile event app, badge printing, and a smoother check-in process without needing to spend another penny. In fact, many event creators have even increased revenue through event tech sponsorship.  

Event sponsorship places a brand directly in front of their target audience and is often recognized as one of the most sophisticated, credible marketing strategies. But today’s brands aren’t interested in a logo placement — they’re searching for opportunities to engage customers. Here’s how you can help them do so.

First, identify your ideal event sponsors…

Before writing your prospectus, create a list of ideal sponsors for your event. This includes all of the companies that you currently and previously have partnered with and potential new sponsors. Check out your competitor’s events – which companies are sponsoring them? Get more inspiration for your sponsor search in this article.

Next, reach out to potential sponsors to find out their goals and challenges. This approach shows that you’re interested in their partnership and not just their money. The answers they provide will help you identify which onsite opportunities are most valuable to them. 

Read on to learn how to align a sponsor’s goals and objectives with the right offer. 

For sponsors that want brand exposure…

When your event is well-established and trusted by attendees, event sponsors will pay a premium to simply be associated with it. Fortunately, onsite event technology offers a treasure trove of opportunities for brand exposure. Here are a few places you can incorporate your sponsor’s image. 

Offer an app splash screen takeover

Put your sponsor’s logo in front of attendees as soon as they open your app.

 Share their brand on the app icon and store listing

This branding opportunity is perfect for events with a global app or technology sponsor.

Add them to the app sponsor list

List your event sponsors in the event app with links to further information. If you have sponsor categories you can group them into sections and themed classifications.

Create a custom icon for them

Customizable menu icons present an opportunity to give sponsors a dedicated button on the app’s main menu. Put them front and center and link to their page in the app or to their website.

Offer a clickable app banner

Page banners sit at the bottom of the app menu and content pages. These banners can be just a static image or a link to a page within the app or an external website.

Integrate them into page headers or session icons

Sponsors can support a particular session, networking event, or piece of content to be reflected on the app page’s header and session icons.

Include sponsored questions or messages on display screens  

There are other opportunities for brand placement in individual sessions and around the venue. For example, for interactive sessions you could include sponsored questions or messages.

Brand your digital interface on kiosks

The first opportunity to highlight a sponsor upon attendee arrival is with kiosks. Brand the digital interface as well as the base.

Place their logo or message in your badge design 

Badges (including the lanyard) is another highly sought after brand placement. Include placements on the front or back of badge design.

For sponsors that want increased traffic and leads…

A number of brands are satisfied with gaining exposure. But those seeking a more direct connection to customers will want more from your event tech. 

Connect attendees with sponsored resources through your event app or website, encouraging them to take further action and find out more about the sponsor.

Send push notifications or SMS attendees, directing them to specific sponsored content. 

Gather information for your sponsors using surveys. Feedback and data from attendees are valuable to you, but these attendee insights can also enable sponsors to deliver a better experience to their target audience.

For sponsors that want to influence and engage with their audience…

For some sponsors it’s not enough to merely direct attendees to their app or website, they prefer to create memorable engagement experiences that will leave more lasting impressions. Here are a few ways sponsors can use interaction to influence attendees. 

  • Create an interactive game element, rewarding attendees with points for visiting sponsor booths, app pages, or websites.
  • Incentivize check-ins to sponsored sessions or exhibitor booths with a digital passport competition.
  • Include a sponsored social feed with a welcome message from the sponsor and sponsored posts.
  • Get creative with a trivia or a scavenger hunt with questions or actions related to the sponsor. 

For sponsors that want proof of ROI…

Sponsors may need to see numbers to justify their spend and identify if their target audience is amongst your attendees. How many guests will be at your event? What is the primary job title of attendees? What industries are they from? Ideally, you can answer these questions based on past event data, but if this is not available you can offer a projection.

Make the most of analytics and tracking data to show sponsors tangible data, which they can use to measure their ROI.

  • Exposure based on a number of app downloads
  • App banner click count and page views
  • Push notification view count
  • Survey results on favorite exhibitor/booth
  • Number of leads captured by exhibitors
  • Profile data — job roles, industry, and more — that can attract and win sponsors for future events 

Once you’ve defined what your sponsors want, you can create the ultimate custom package for them. 

Looking for more ways to snag sponsors? Check out this post.