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Finding Blog Conference Sponsorship

blythe image by flickr user annethelibrarian

Once you’ve been blogging for a bit, you start to wonder about real-life bloggers out there, and if there is any way you could possibly meet them. Going to a blogging or crafty conference is one way to meet your online friends in real life, but the costs can add up quickly. Getting sponsors is one way to subsidize your costs for attending a blogging conference. Today at #crafterminds, we chatted about how to get conference sponsorship, and things to think about when you are looking for sponsorship.

The full transcript is at the bottom of the post, and here are some highlights:

  • RT @taunitweets: First step to finding conf sponsorship? Understanding the conferences sponsorship rules & regs
  • Has anyone sat down & tried to figure out the actual costs for attending a conference?
  • When thinking about your costs, remember airfare, hotel, food, incidentals, childcare, at-conference transportation
  • RT @taunitweets: Most conferences have specific rules abt individual sponsorship on their site…
  • I love this article from @blissdom: Smart Girl’s Guide to Personal Sponsorship
  • And also from @blissdom: Crafting Your Pitch
  • RT @taunitweets: The earlier you can pitch a company the better. Many have budgets planned out for the yr before it begins.
  • When creating a pitch for sponsorship, think about what you can offer a potential sponsor
  • Ways you can benefit a sponsor: placement on your blog (a post, sidebar ad), social media love…
  • RT @taunitweets: Consider partial sponsorships…Pitching several non-competing companies.
  • RT @taunitweets Consider working as a volunteer to cover the cost of your ticket.
  • RT @taunitweets: If you have an existing relationship w/ a sponsor then I wld contact. Otherwise seek out new ones.
  • You can also apply to speak at a conference – could be good for a free ticket.
  • I estimate $1000 & up RT @MouseInMyPocket: what is the average cost to attend a conference?
  • RT @reesedixon: went to my first conf this year. It paid for itself and brought opps I wasnt getting on my own.
  • RT @taunitweets: Blog advertising, sponsored posts, blog giveaways, business card
  • @craftmoore brings up a good point! You can ask for local businesses or family members to sponsor/donate.
  • RT @graphicsfairy: Dont forget, if you make an income on your blog or your handmade biz, you can deduct expenses
  • Maybe you could offer to set up a FB page or do some social media for a local business in ex. for sponsorship
  • You can raise money by having a garage sale, bake sale, or craft sale, too! Earmark your sales for an event.
  • Ways to save $ on a conference: share hotel rooms, be on airline mailing lists (to take advantage of sales)
  • RT @iLoveToCreate: From company stance, we want 2 know how youll be ambassador for us at show. Send a creative & prepared presentation.
  • RT @craftmoore: Whatever the sponsorship “deal” is, you dont want it to take away from YOUR conference experience.
  • YES, keep in mind the things you are promising a sponsor. Don’t promise too much (esp. AT show – you’ll be crazy busy already)
  • Some good conference sponsorship ideas in this article: Mom Blog Magazine: What Bloggers Can Offer Brands
  • RT @CraftaholicAnon: Another way to save cost is look up your friends on FB and see if anyone lives close to the conf.
  • Warning about couch-surfing during conference – travel to conference every day can be a PAIN
  • RT @taunitweets: Buy your tix early. Most conferences have early bird rates – much better deal!
  • I stayed at a friends’ house for a conference – travel was HARSH – 45 min drive (& I had no car)
  •  RT @taunitweets: Staying at the official conference hotel will usually save you money #trustme
  • Here’s an idea – how about hosting a Twitter chat for a sponsor in exchange for some moolah?
  • WORD RT @taunitweets: I think its always more beneficial to go where your “people” are.
  • Yes! Choose conferences wisely for maximum return on investment!
  • RT @taunitweets: Make sure you pay attention to what conf fee covers. @snapconf is covering most meals
  • Make sure your family is on board for your conference going – they all have to sacrifice for you to go.
  • RT @taunitweets: If you want to volunteer for a conf, follow them, engage, build relationship. Youre more likely to get a spot
  • This is also a great strategy for prospective sponsors! RT @taunitweets: engage, build relationship.
  • Some collected Conference Sponsorship wisdom from #BWEchat: Blog Sponsorship Advice
  • When I approach a sponsor, I focus the things I will do on my blog, NOT at the conference
  • What brands are looking for from a sponsorship pitch (from @unexperiencedmom): What Do Companies Want in a Sponsorship Pitch?
  • Don’t fill pitches with hesitation “You have to believe in yourself and what you can offer.” http://ow.ly/7HJ3E
  • RT @CookCleanCraft: Im now thinking about using frequent flyer points to help reduce costs.
  • Once you get a sponsor, don’t forget to send them an invoice!
  • “my promotion ideas were good, but what I had already done spoke louder to them than anything else”: How Did I Get a Sponsor?
  • When you get sponsorship, you are adding layers of complication to the event.
  • But conference sponsorship is a great avenue to explore, esp. if you need financial help to attend

image: licensed via flickr/creative commons, by annethelibrarian

11 28 2011 Crafterminds Transcript

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3 Responses to “Finding Blog Conference Sponsorship”

  1. sorry I missed the chat today. Had to do my ‘day job’. Thanks for posting the transcript as this is info I’ve been wanting for a while!

  2. Rick Calvert says:

    I would like to expand on what @craftmoore said here: “Whatever the sponsorship “deal” is, you dont want it to take away from YOUR conference experience.”

    The first question is why are you attending? To hone your craft, network with peers and potential sponsors, advertisers and become a better blogger? Or just to have some fun? Or are you attending the conference as a vehicle for making money in itself?

    That last option is the only reason you should be getting sponsored to attend a blogging conference imo. Otherwise you are just distracting yourself from your original purpose.

    Can attending an event be expensive? absolutely. You have your pass, the travel the hotel, food, entertaining clients or peers. It adds up. Is it worth it? Well if you chose the right event and work your butt off while you are there to improve your business then the answer is a resounding yes.

    Secondly speaking as a show organizer I can tell you that we all frown on this practice at the least and are openly hostile to it in the extreme.

    Our business is charging attendees and exhibitors / sponsors to come to our events. If you are getting sponsored and giving a company access to our audience without paying us for that exposure you are taking money from the conference organizer.

    Secondly most legitimate sponsors and exhibitors are going to be upset that you did this and allowed a competitor to “suitcase” the event they paid good money to participate in. They followed the rules and you didn’t.

    That is not a very good first impression when you are meeting new clients.

    They may not tell you that to your face but I guarantee you they are thinking it.

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