An effective cycling sponsorship prospecting script

Quick, you’re talking with a prospective sponsor about cycling sponsorship. You have one minute to describe why they should engage and talk with you.

What do you say?

An effective script should follow three simple rules. First, it should provide a brief, easily understandable, description of your club, team or event. Second, it has to describe the value sponsorship can provide. Third, it should include a “call to action”; i.e. why you are calling, and a suggested next step (what you want to happen next?).

Below I have created a quick guide you can follow, as you engage prospective sponsors in discussions. The recommended approach is divided into three sections – opening, middle, and closing. Each section has a few points which you can use when contacting, or engaging, prospective sponsors in initial discussions.

Opening Introduce yourself and who you represent. Quickly describe your club, team, or event, including a few of the key points listed below.

Name of club or team

Where you’re located; area served

How long the club or team has been in existence

What you do & why – race, promote recreational cycling, participate in fund raising rides for charities, help develop trails and/or bike lanes, cycling advocacy, youth development racing program……

Where you do it – road, mountain, track, cyclocross, local parks, shared trails…..

Activities – charity events, races, rallies, group rides, community service, initiatives (“Share the Road”, “Safe Cycling Education”…)

Middle (What’s in it for them?)Focus on the potential benefits to them! Discuss the value you have delivered for other sponsors, or the value your club/team can deliver to them. Briefly describe how cycling sponsorship can help companies achieve their business goals & objectives. Remember it is important to align your messages with the reasons companies provide sponsorship – to make money, save money, or promote an intended image. (“Understanding why companies sponsor cycling clubs”)

Examples – describe how your participation in activities as group rides, races, rallies, etc. has driven, or can drive, greater visibility, awareness, interest, traffic and sales, or brand recognition. Another idea is to discuss how your club/team has helped its sponsors drive increased sales through B2B (business-to-business) relationships initiated by your club or team.  Lastly, if your club or team is a registered 501©(3), non-profit, be sure to mention it, and describe the benefit.

If your club or team does not have any existing sponsors, describe the value of cycling as a sport helping companies increase visibility, awareness, etc. Refer to the following post for good examples describing why companies view cycling sponsorship as a good vehicle for increasing their visibility with a specific audience, market segment or niche.

Closing/Call to Action (What you want to happen next?) This is where you should suggest a logical next step. The purpose of the closing statement is to have further discussions, enabling you to engage in the sponsorship selling process. An example of a potential next step could be an appointment to:

Learn about their company – business, market served (clients, target customers), goals and objectives

Understand who they sponsor or support through funding & donations? And, why?

Explore potential areas where their company and your club, or team, can work together.

Another example of a “call to action” is to understand who is involved in making sponsorship decisions. And, to identify the process involved. (Which company resources are involved, time frames, budgets, etc.)

So, there you have it. A short, concise, effective approach you can use to engage prospective sponsors. If you focus on the value your club, team, or event can provide; aligning your messages with what motivates companies to sponsor; you should be able to engage more companies in productive sponsorship discussions.

As always, I am very interested in hearing from you. So, please feel free to leave a comment, or send an e-mail to Al at Sponsor My Cycling Club dot com.

Thanks again for visiting. Remember, until next time, to “keep the rubber side down!”

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