When you sponsor something, you are financially supporting a person, organization, or cause. Sponsorships are considered to be one of the fastest growing form of marketing in the U.S. and also, for factoring brokers, represent one of the most powerful networking and relationship building tools for your factoring and commercial finance consulting business. Recognizing good opportunities for sponsorships and arranging to participate in them will allow you to meet and network with very large numbers of potential referral sources and even prospective clients all at one time while often supporting a great cause. Though such sponsorships often involve some form of charitable cause or philanthropic event, the financial contribution of the sponsor is almost always provided with some financial benefit in mind. In other words, sponsors expect a “payback” for their support. And… a great example of such payback would be the “Bankers Bash“.
The Bankers Bash example below is a case study of an actual event held annually by a very, very successful factoring broker. It’s a unique sponsorship-styled event but one that virtually any creative factoring consultant can organize once you put some time and effort into it.
Bill’s Case Study: The Bankers “Bash” Sponsorship
Bill, a factoring broker, belongs to a popular service club in his community and over time, has worked his way into a position of leadership and authority. One of the club’s primary fundraisers is an Annual Golf Tournament for a local charity. Bill worked hard to get put in charge of the tournament and he had a great idea to make it BIG HIT! He created the Banker’s Bash…a tournament for “Lenders Only” in his community. As a factoring broker, this meant a great opportunity to meet and build relationships with dozens of local loan officers and other bank employees that meant referrals. And once in charge, and in typical “Bill” fashion, he decided to make the BASH bigger and more popular than the tournament ever was before. He was going to give away a car away by having his company sponsor a “Hole-In-One” contest.
Setting Up the “Bash”
Bill contacted a specialized insurance company that offered promotional hole-in-one insurance and found he could purchase a policy for insurance against a hole in one for about $1,000. The insurance would cover the cost of a popular $40,000 -$50,000 German import in the event a participant became the lucky player and made a hole-in-one. As a professional broker, this was actually well within Bill’s annual marketing budget. So he agreed purchased the insurance for the event. After a quick call to a local dealership, the dealer was more than happy to have one of his bright red, sport coupes on display at the event. In fact, the car would be parked right on the on the grass next to the tee box on the par 3 hole chosen for the contest. And…there as added bonus! When Bill explained the details of the tournament and the local charity that benefitted, the dealer even offered to pick up half the cost of the $1,000 hole-in-one insurance policy.
Bill’s Job at the “Bash”
So now it comes to the point of Bill’s job at the “Bash”. Although Bill was an avid golfer, he did not play in his own event. Instead, he set up shop right on the par 3’s tee box so he could meet, greet, and shake hands with every banker and lender that played and teed off as they tried to win the car. Bill had coolers of refreshments available and gave each contestant a free sleeve of “lucky” golf balls with his company’s logo and a four leaf clover boldly imprinted on each ball.
Results of the Bash
While the tournament was a complete success for the local charity, the “BASH” was a networking and relationship building BONANZA for Bill the broker!
- Prior to the “BASH”, Bill visited every bank in the area, passing out entry forms and invitations to play in “his” tournament for a good cause. And…meeting loan officers while doing so.
- At the tournament, Bill personally shook hands with each player (banker), gave them a logoed gift, and wished them good luck on winning the car that HIS COMPANY was giving away.
- Over the next several weeks, after the tournament, Bill stopped in every bank that fielded a team, thanked the bank loan officers personally, handed out “leftover” promotional items with his company’s logo and cashed on his promotion. He now began the relationship process by inviting them to get together and have lunch in the near future.
Bottom Line: Working Towards a Goal
Setting up and organizing a “killer” sponsorship such as the Bankers Bash will take some time and effort. You will first need to elevate yourself to a position in a fraternal or community club / organization where you can earn the right to run the event. Clubs that have a strong number of business owners will be very interested in this type of promotion since it not only raises funds for the “philanthropic cause of the day” but also gives the club members a chance to meet the bankers in the community since these events are typically followed by a BBQ or dinner event of some kind where prizes are given out for winners and opportunities abound for club members to network.
For factoring brokers, working towards a “Bankers Bash” sponsorship may take some time and effort, but successfully overseeing and managing this type of promotion year after year will entrench you solidly as a mover and shaker in the community and can literally turn you into a six-figure producer in a very short time.