How do I get a large company to sponsor a small event?
OK. I'll explain this a little bit.
Every year for the last 23 years a vintage vehicle rally has been held here in my hometown. I helped out with the running of this this year. Whilst it is primarily a vehicle rally, it is a day for everyone with fairground rides, historic town centre, shops and lots of fun to be had.
The event happened yesterday (15th July), at a cost of £10,000. Usually we rely on donations from local traders to run the event as it isn't funded by the council however this year donations only amounted to around £2,000 meaning that the "company" who run the event had to eat into the cash reserves meaning that we don't have much for next years event.
We also had trouble with finding volunteers to help out on the day (even the committee are volunteers) and so it'd be nice if we could pay stewards too... minimum wage jobby really.
Anyway, we'll need some funding for next years event. Our first meeting is next week (yeah, we're starting early) and while it was on my mind I thought I'd look at the possibility of finding a company who will sponsor the event, £10,000 - £20,000 (depending on whether we pay marshalls, ask for money to advertise the event better, try to attract better entertainments, etc).
Does anyone have any experience of getting corporate sponsorship? Is it easy? What needs to be included in the letter? Does anyone have any contacts or ways of making it easier?
I'm thinking that £20,000 isn't TOO much to ask for from these large companies. We estimate this year's crowd at over 50,000 people so it's a nice marketing oppertunity. I was thinking of targeting car manufacturers but if you call it the "Honda Transport Festival" vehicle owners might only think it's for Honda vehicles, so whilst I'm open to that idea I'm thinking that something unrelated would work well too.
Anyway, any help appreciated. Obviously, we have a year to do this but I'd guess it'd all need to be sorted by the end of the year.