Organizer resource classics: How to obtain a sponsor for your Meetup Group
This classic guide to finding Sponsors for your Meetup Group is from our (now defunct) Organizer Resource Center. It was put together by Ron Purvis, one-time Organizer of the Greenville D&D Gamers Meetup.
There’s a ton of great information in here. Things to know before you begin, how to figure out which sorts of businesses might be a good match, and what to say to get a business on board with supporting your Meetup Group. If you’re thinking about looking for Sponsors but you’re not sure how to go about it, read on.
What Do You Need from a Sponsor?
The first step in finding a sponsor, is deciding what you need from the sponsor. Until you know how much you need, and if you can use services and/or merchandise in place of money, it makes no sense to ask the potential sponsor.
First, take a quick look at what you have spent in the past. How much have you had to pay in fees to Meetup, the venue where you meet, the stationary store, the copy center, and any other place that you spend money for your Meetup group. Count it all up both in dollar amount and in merchandise and services.
Next we need to look at where you would like to be with your Meetup group if you could afford it. For instance would you have t-shirts or bumper stickers for the members? Do you need business cards? How about funds for materials used during the Meetup? You may also want to host a dinner party for the members? What ever your plans, you need to list how much money and merchandise and services that you will need.
Once you have the total list of what you need for both current and planned expenses, you need to separate these expenses by recurring and one time expenses. Now that you know what you need in order to accomplish what you want to do, we need to see what we can offer the sponsor.
Make your next Meetup a S.L.I.C.E. - 5 things you can do to have more fun at your next Meetup
Meeting new people is tough. Making genuine connections is even harder.
We’ve put together five things that you can do to have more fun and be more social at your next Meetup. Think of the following as your Meetup checklist:
1) Slow Down: When you move quickly, others may perceive you as nervous or uncomfortable. Being excited and engaged is important – but focus your energy. You want to maintain control of your body language and voice. It’s the difference between a disco ball and a laser beam: the disco ball is wild and fun but gives you a headache after a while… a laser can cut through steel.
2) Loud Voice: Speaking quietly sub-communicates that you aren’t sure of what to say. In a noisy environment, you want to speak loudly enough that people can hear you over other conversations—this is particularly important when you first start talking to someone. Once you make that first impression, you really just can ride that wave – everything you do later will be rooted in the confidence you demonstrated early on.
3) Interrupt People: You will rarely have the perfect, unobstructed opportunity to meet the people you really want to talk to. You don’t want to interrupt somebody’s emotional story of love and loss, but you shouldn’t feel afraid to engage a group of people who seem interesting. Just say, “Hello, don’t let me stop you,” to whoever is speaking at the time. After you get an idea of what they are talking about, toss something in. It’s a lot better than hovering around people waiting for a chance to join the conversation.