Visitor attractions attracting corporate sponsorship – the tips below are designed to help museums and heritage attractions gain optimum benefits from sponsorship opportunities
How to attract corporate sponsorship for your visitor experience – museums and heritage projects:
- Clearly articulate the benefits to sponsors – the first step is to understand what potential sponsoring organisations are likely to benefit from a more formal association with the museum and its activities.
- Create a list of potential target corporate sponsors – ask all management staff, trustees and volunteers for their suggestions.
- Recognise that some sponsors may wish to target your primary audiences – having reliable data on your visitor base can prove very important in this regard.
- Build a relationship with your sponsors – local companies may wish to demonstrate their commitment to local cultural ‘wellbeing’ as part of a wider responsible employer philosophy.
- Nominate one person (volunteer or trustee) to have responsibility for sponsorship and corporate liaison.
- Add links with sponsors as regular agenda item on museum management / organisational meetings.
- In setting out a sponsorship proposal include specific requests, how resources will be used and the difference that corporate sponsorship can make to the organisation. Most sponsorship is financial but manpower, supplies and technical expertise can also provide useful contributions to help reduce the museum cost base.
Invite sponsors and potential sponsors to a museum open day or similar event to demonstrate the museums activities and show the value of the sponsorship.
Corporate sponsorship – what can be attractive to sponsors?
Some thoughts on the range of sponsorship areas which can be tailored to respond to the objectives of different companies:
- The overall museum (possibly including the sponsor’s name in the museum title)
- Specific collections / galleries
- Individual exhibits
- Staff secondment
- Specialist expertise
Corporate sponsorship – some possible pitfalls
- Some companies may fall into difficulties and may have issues in respect of their public profile, environmental credentials, financial probity etc. Any sponsorship agreements should therefore seek to avoid conditions and be subject to termination in the event of certain scenarios.
- The museum’s visitors, staff or volunteers may disagree with the actions of potential sponsors who may be perceived to be working to contrary purposes. The mission statements of potential sponsors and the museum should therefore have significant common ground.
- Corporate sponsors tend to contribute in part from public spirited generosity and in part out of self interest. The balance between the public good and the corporate good can be a delicate one – any donations should be unconditional wherever possible.
To find out more about sponsorship for your museum or attraction please contact Richard Linington firstname.lastname@example.org or call 023 9248 1999