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3 Ways for Your Sponsors to Connect with In-Person Events

Read this blog to discover three ways for your sponsors to connect with in-person events.

In 2020, we saw the shift from in-person to virtual events. Now in 2022, we are seeing a shift once again, but this time back to in-person and hybrid meetings, conferences, and career fairs. With the shift back to in-person it’s time for event planners and sponsors to think about how they are going to approach the events. Some organizations may opt for a hybrid option by providing a virtual component or a secondary virtual event after the in-person meeting.  When it comes to events in 2022 the “new normal” may look different for every organization and that is ok! Do what is best to help and serve your members. Let’s explore three ways to help your sponsors connect back with attendees for in-person programming. Organizations are excited to start meeting again to help grow important networking connections.  

According to the 2021 Association Trends Study by Community Brands industry news, training and networking were all very important benefits to association members and those working at their organizations. Knowing this information is helpful for looking at event programs and what types of offerings you can have at your events. Reviewing these benefits below might also help spark new and creative sponsorship ideas to help provide the most exposure and engagement at your event – and drive non-dues revenue.  

Top 12 Association Benefits

Let’s talk about events and sponsors!  

1. Did someone say branding?

Brand recognition is such a key element to sponsorship and with the shift back to in-person events it is easy to carry out the sponsor deliverables in a variety of ways. At your next event site tour, think about how you can incorporate your sponsors branding options at the venue. Floor clings, elevator signage, and welcome signs are all great ways to incorporate branding at the venue. Another fun way is with welcome bags. You can incorporate various sponsors branding by filling welcome bags with deliverable items and information packets. It’s also great to name your breakout rooms after your sponsors and have those sponsors be the representatives in those educational or exhibit breakout rooms. At your next career fair, think about ways sponsors could provide maps of exhibitors and help work the information table on site. Find creative and fun ways for your sponsors to be in front of your members, allowing them the opportunity to get their messaging and products across.  

2. Sponsors and socials

In 2020, we shifted to more creative ways to have social events through a virtual platform and computer screen.  Now with in-person returning, it’s time to think about how your sponsors can host a social event again! Networking receptions, welcome orientations and luncheons are all great ways to celebrate your sponsors and members in a social setting. Give your career fair attendees the opportunity to network with the organizations at a social event at the end of the career fair. This is an excellent opportunity for job seekers to learn more about the companies and ask questions. You can also add a new twist on a social event at your upcoming conference or career fair by incorporating a professional head shot station. This could be sponsored and provide your attendees the ability to update their career head shots while being able to network, connect and learn more about the sponsor. This is also a great idea to help your members grow in their careers and feel more prepared for their next career moves.  


fully managed career events

3. Sponsor a speaking session or a fun game giveaway!

Give your sponsors the opportunity to speak to your attendees.  Allowing them the opportunity to welcome the start of an education session or awards program gives prime attention to the sponsor.  Your sponsor can have the opportunity to speak about their organization, show a short video and introduce the speaker for your session.  At an in-person career fair, you can have a sponsor kick off the start of the career fair with a welcome address and have that sponsor announce various things during the event. Incorporating a game and giveaway drives traffic at the career fair and encourages participation and engagement throughout the event. When the sponsor provides the prize for the giveaway it’s also another great opportunity for brand recognition from that organization.  

Get creative: Think of exciting, out-of-the-box ideas for sponsorship exposure that can be fun, rewarding for your sponsor and helpful for your event attendees. The transition back to in-person events can feel a little overwhelming but there are so many resources here to help you.   

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