Archive for the ‘sponsorship’ Category

Tips for the RFP Process

February 9, 2016

Responding to an RFP can be a daunting task, especially in the sports market.  Yet, tackling an RFP piece-by-piece can make the process easier and, hopefully, yield lucrative results.

The first thing you need to do is make sure that the requirements are a good fit for your destination. Read the RFP thoroughly to see if you have the items needed to place a bid.  The bare bones necessary are the venues, hotel space, volunteer availability, expertise of a Local Organizing Committee (LOC) and a plan to deal with bid fees.  If you have any questions, pick up the phone and call the planner.  A phone call will go a long way, and allows you to find out what the hot button issues are. In some cases, what you might think is important actually may be unimportant for the planner.  Always ask the question. For example, if a bid specifies that your fields need to have lights but yours don’t, ask the planner if lack of lights is a deal breaker.  Another example might be that a client prefers Hilton properties, but the bulk of your rooms are with Marriott. If this happens, let the client know, and check to see if this will be an issue for the bid.

One of the most important steps in this process is to check the history of the event you are bidding on.  The best way to do this is to talk to the CVBs or Sports Commissions in cities that have hosted the event in the past.  Ask them about venues used, hotel pickup and if there were any challenges with the event operator.  Make sure to find out if they had any overall problems with the event.  This information is very valuable, and will help you in the RFP process.  It is important to also check the geographical history of the event – has the event ever occurred in your region? Some events are a better fit to certain areas of the country- what works in the South might not work as well in the North. It’s fine to let a client know that you have researched their event.  It shows that you are thorough and helps keep them transparent and communicative.

Many destinations cannot afford – or simply won’t pay – bid fees. Many times, a bid fee can be circumvented by offering concessions instead.  A list of concessions is usually provided along with the bid fee. These can include complimentary hotel rooms, airline tickets, rental cars etc.   Only the sales person and the destination marketing or sports organization can determine if you can address their concessions.  Perhaps you can form a partnership with a local rental car agency to get a reduced weekly rate in exchange for agency being listed as the sponsor. Airlines can be a bit challenging, however contact your local hub, they may be willing to work with you. Utilize relationships with the hotels in the area to obtain comp rooms for the proposal.  Some events will require two or more hotels to fill the comps. Always make sure the comp policy is consistent across hotels listed in the proposal.

Once you have collected all of the information required for the bid, prepare to submit the proposal. If you have not been able to meet all the concessions, it is still okay to submit. Several things can happen at this point. One response may be, that, although the concessions were not completely met, the facilities may be a better fit for the event. Another response could be a flat out no, however the organizer now is aware what you are able to do and may come back for future events.

It is important to ask for decision dates as a part of the proposal submission. If it is not specifically addressed in the RFP, make sure to ask. This allows organizations to hold space at facilities until decision time. Some facilities will place the space on “hold” for a certain number of days and give the event planner the “right of refusal” for the dates. In that case the organization on “hold” will have to go to contract and send a deposit for the space. Some organizations will request a site visit as a part of the decision process. With years of experience, it is safe to say a site visit should typically last two days to include venue and hotel options.

John Gibbons, CSEE
Executive Director of the RI Sports Commission
JGibbons@GoSportsRI.ocm

Ron Eifert, CSEE
Senior Sales Manager
Dayton Convention & Visitors Bureau
reifert@daytoncvb.net

Finding funding: Sometimes it comes to you

July 28, 2015

So you have a great idea for a new event for your facility: It would bring in hundreds of athletes who would stay multiple days and bring in thousands of dollars to the local economy.

Or, you’d like to expand your facility, adding fields or courts, which would allow you to bring in bigger, better events. All sounds good, but the bottom line, as they say, is the bottom line: How to pay for all of this?

It’s a universal issue that all organizations, rights holders, facility operators, high school and college athletic departments or team managers face. You may have great ideas, but you don’t have the resources to fund them. Where does the money come from?

As a sports corporation or CVB, you might ask your sales staff to acquire more sponsorships or partnerships. (what your sales staff says after you leave the room, well, that’s out of our control)

We already know that more colleges and universities, especially those outside the “Power Five” conferences, are looking to beer sales at games to help fund the athletic department. A year ago, there were 21 on-campus football stadiums where any fan of legal age could grab a brew. That’s more than twice as many as five years ago.

Troy University Athletic Director John Hartwell estimated that beer would account for $200,000 in commissions for the season. According to its contract with concessionaire Sodexo, Troy receives 43 percent of gross beer sales at its 30,000-seat stadium, or better than $2 for every $5 beer.

But sometimes the money comes to you, through an endowment. A trend that started in the Ivy League and spread to other schools is now becoming the new way to save that school from paying a salary.

The most recent example? Richard Corbett, a Florida real-estate executive who served as the business manager of Robert F. Kennedy’s 1968 presidential campaign, gave $35 million to the University of Notre Dame, from which he graduated in 1960.

Of the total, $25 million will go for a new building to house the anthropology and psychology departments and a digital-media center. He also directed $10 million of the gift to endow the university’s head football coach position.

In another case, Xavier’s men’s basketball coach, Chris Mack, is now the Sedler Family Men’s Head Basketball Coach after Tom and Genny Sedler provided Xavier with the endowment to fund Coach Mack’s salary. The endowment basically allows the university to take the money that would go to salaries and use it somewhere else.

The academic side has been doing this for decades, as donors have funded the “so-and-so-chair for chemical engineering research” at universities around the country. So how can you get the endowment idea to work for you?

It might come in the form of a civic-minded philanthropist who wants to fund a new soccer or basketball complex, or a company that can use foundation dollars to help a community cause while getting its name out in public.

This is a time we all have to be creative to find sponsorship and partnership dollars. Doing a form of an endowment might be the way to get your project from the drawing board, into the community.

ball field

NASC Signs Top Sponsors for Sports Event Symposium

November 12, 2014

Cincinnati (November 11, 2014) – The National Association of Sports Commissions welcomes its Elite and Diamond level sponsors for its upcoming Sports Event Symposium, to be held April 27-30 at the Wisconsin Center in Milwaukee.

Elite level sponsors who have signed on for the Symposium include the host, VISIT Milwaukee, as well as the West Michigan Sports Commission.

Signed Diamond level sponsors include Foley Sports Tourism Complex (Alabama) and TEAM Maryland.

Foley Sports Tourism Complex will sponsor the Keynote Luncheon, TEAM Maryland the Sports Marketplace Aisle Signage, VISIT Milwaukee the Welcome Reception, and West Michigan Sports Commission, the Closing Celebration.

Grand Rapids and the West Michigan Sports Commission will be the host for the 2016 NASC Sports Event Symposium, Monday, April 4 through Thursday, April 7 at DeVos Place, downtown Grand Rapids.

“We are grateful for the support that our Elite and Diamond level sponsors continue to show the Sports Event Symposium each year,” said Don Schumacher, executive director. “Without their help, the Symposium would not continue to be the premiere education and networking event for sports professionals.”

The NASC Sports Event Symposium is the annual meeting for the only not-for-profit association for the sports tourism industry. For more than 20 years, the Symposium has been designed for sports tourism professionals by sports tourism professionals.

Through a combination of industry-leading educational and business development opportunities, more than 800 Symposium attendees learn how to produce measurable ROI for their organization and advance their careers in the industry. To learn more about the Symposium and sponsorship opportunities, email beth@sportscommissions.org or visit www.sportscommissions.org/symposium.

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For more information or an interview with NASC staff, please contact Jackie Reau/Betsy Ross at Game Day Communications, 513-929-4263.

Mascot Mania: Making Community Connections

October 6, 2014

A mascot can be more than a tiger roaming the sidelines of a game, it can serve as an ambassador for year-round fan engagement.

Consider this: A couple of weeks ago, Texas A&M’s live mascot, Reveille, a female rough collie, was saved from impending injury when an A&M cadet stepped between her and an SMU receiver and blocked the receiver from crashing into the dog. That got a lot of airplay and, for the cadet, got him a free pair of senior boots worth more than $1,000, paid for by the commandant of the Corps for his heroism. (you can read a play by play breakdown of the best block of the game here: http://www.sbnation.com/college-football/2014/9/22/6827349/reveille-texas-am-mascot-ryan-kreider)

So, the mascot earned Texas A&M great publicity and connected the school with the community and sports fans everywhere.

Think about adding a mascot to do the same for your organization?

For example, Kentucky Speedway for years had  ‘Horsepower,’ its community mascot. (pictured) Horsepower would be part of many community events that might not have had a thing to do with auto racing, such as mascot broomball every winter. Horsepower also has led library reading programs, participated in flag football at halftime of NFL games and been part of mascot foot races at Cincinnati Reds games.

Even though Kentucky Speedway is a venue with a handful of events throughout the year, its mascot ‘Horsepower’ helped keep Kentucky Speedway in front of the community, and consumers, throughout the year by having a presence at events.

Libraries have mascot reading dogs. Recycle services have mascot recycle bins (really). The idea is less about developing an expensive mascot, and more about keeping your organization, sports commission or venue in front of the community 24/7, 365.

Remember, it’s your community that supports your group with sponsorships, volunteers and ticket sales. Having a mascot is a fun and simple way to engage the community on a year-round basis.

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Special Offer on 2014 Symposium Sponsorships

January 2, 2014

2014 logo_low resOnly a few sponsorship opportunities remain for the 2014 NASC Sports Event Symposium. Don’t miss out on exceptional exposure for your brand including recognition on the final Symposium mailer, which will be distributed to over 6,000 sports event professionals.

Sponsorship packages are flexible and customized to suit your business objectives and organizational needs.

GOLD SPONSOR BENEFITS: One (1) conference registration, 1/4 page advertisement in conference program, on-site signage, social media mentions, recognition in sponsors section of Symposium app, Invitation to private function in Sports Marketplace, Mic-time at sponsored function (where applicable), Company name on Symposium website, emails, and marketing pieces

PLATINUM SPONSOR BENEFITS:  One (1) conference registration, 1/4 page advertisement in conference program, on-site signage, social media mentions, recognition in sponsors section of Symposium app, Invitation to private function in Sports Marketplace, Mic-time at sponsored function (where applicable), Company logo on Symposium website, emails, and marketing pieces

SPECIAL OFFER!!! Sign a sponsorship contract by January 31st, 2014 and choose any one of the following Add On’s at no additional charge:

–   Second conference registration
–   Pre-conference attendee list
–  Half page program ad
–   Banner at on www.NASCsymposium.com
–   Item in registration bag

Available Sponsorships

Sponsor Level Investment  Function
 GOLD  $5,000 Education Room
 GOLD  $5,000 First Time Attendee Reception
 GOLD  $5,000 Game Changers
 GOLD  $5,000 Conference Program
 PLATINUM  $7,000 Breakfast General Session
 PLATINUM  $7,000 Mobile App
 PLATINUM  $7,000 Rapid RFP Review

Contact Beth Hecquet, CMP, CMM, Director of Meetings and Events, at 513.281.3888 x3 to secure your sponsorship today! View complete information on sponsorship opportunities.

Here with just a few of our closest friends

August 3, 2012

As our Olympic Games journey comes to an end, we finally made it to where the games began – Olympic Park.  In order to access the Park, either a ticket for a venue within the area or a day-pass that had to be purchased months in advance is required.  At first, this made no sense to me as many sponsors have interactive exhibits here, and the Merchandise Mega Store takes up a good portion of the area.  Furthermore, it is a great place to people watch.  However, upon spending a few minutes here, I understand the method to what I assumed was madness.  I am guesstimating there will be upwards of 400,000 people here today. If they had opened the doors to everyone, it would be a security nightmare, nearly impossible to enjoy and just plain crazy.  It has been a great trip and I look forward to sharing the nearly 2,000 photos I have taken.

 

Beth Hecquet, CMP
Director of Meetings and Events
NASC

It’s Fun and Games

August 2, 2012

Greater London has caught the Olympic spirit. Banners are up on houses, businesses and streets. Free and pay activities have been created and heavily promoted such as BT Live in Hyde Park.  Large screens have been erected at Hampton Court Palace grounds to watch competitions.  Although there has been quite a fuss about tickets being listed as unavailable even though many seats have been empty at major events (you’ve probably seen them on TV), there are still plenty of ways to participate and catch the Olympic spirit.

Olympic Flags

BT Live

Beth Hecquet, CMP
Director of Meetings and Events
NASC

CSEE Spring 2012 Module Preview

February 1, 2012