Like all grassroots sports organisations, fishing clubs are in need of on-going revenue and a great way to boost the bank balance is through club sponsorship.
Of course, finding the right sponsors isn’t always easy. To help you find funding for your fishing club, check out our ultimate guide to attracting sponsorship now…
What is sponsorship?
Typically, sponsorship involves businesses providing you with resources, funds or services in exchange for an association with your club. As well as helping local organisations, sponsors can gain a commercial advantage by obtaining positive PR and advertising opportunities.
With many fishing clubs facing funding challenges, securing sponsorship is a crucial way of increasing your revenue and keeping your club alive.
Why are club sponsors important?
First and foremost, sponsorship can help to raise money for your fishing club. As the bills mount up, it can be hard to fund every aspect of your club through subs and membership fees alone. With sponsorship to offset these costs, you can offer better club facilities and events.
However, sponsorship isn’t just about funding. With the right sponsors, you can raise the profile of your fishing club too. This is essential if you want to attract new members, establish yourselves in the local community or qualify for further local funding.
Engagement with the community is important for all grassroots sports clubs, as you’ll likely need community support at some point or another. Even though some members of the community won’t necessarily be interested in joining your club, they may be happy to support a local endeavour. By building community ties, you can gain support from local people, regardless of whether they’re actually a member of your fishing club.
Who should you approach for sponsorship?
For many fishing clubs, securing sponsorship from anywhere can be advantageous! However, targeting the right sponsors can streamline your efforts and increase your chances of securing sponsorship. When you’re applying for sponsorship, the following types of organisations should be front of mind:
Targeting businesses which manufacture, supply or sell fishing equipment is always going to be popular. With an understanding of the sport and the culture, they may be more likely to offer you sponsorship. Furthermore, these types of companies can also offer you discounts when your members need equipment. If you already deal with one main supplier or store, be sure to approach them first.
Companies which are based in the local area are often keen to get involved with community events and local clubs. If you want to enhance your ties to the community, approaching local businesses for sponsorship is a great way to do it.
Start-ups and enterprises
New businesses and start-ups are often looking for exposure and publicity. Associating themselves with a local fishing club or sports organisation is a great way to achieve this, so keep an eye out for new companies, freshly launched enterprises and local entrepreneurs.
How to appeal to a sponsor
Sponsorship is a two-way street, so it’s important to determine exactly what you can offer your potential sponsors. Whether it’s space in your member newsletter, advertising on your website or branding on club jackets, target sponsors will want to know what they’ll get in return for their investment. So it’s important to think about what your club can offer in return.
When you’re appealing to a sponsor, it’s essential to provide information about your fishing club too. With a brief history of the club, you can highlight the benefits it brings to the community and the profile it’s achieved in the local area. Aligning the club’s values with the sponsor’s company ethos is always beneficial too.
To successfully attract sponsors, you’ll need to offer an eye-catching and persuasive opportunity. It’s usually best to do this in writing but don’t be afraid to pick up the phone or use email marketing techniques to secure sponsorship.
It’s important to outline the benefits that sponsorship can offer them and your club. Whilst you’ll most certainly be hoping for an injection of cash to boost your revenue, you may want to encourage them to become an integral part of the club too. Inviting them to be present at club events or to participate in club meetings is a popular way of fostering a sense of belonging, for example.
Remember – sponsorship is a commercial transaction. Unlike fundraising, potential sponsors are going to expect you to live up to the terms of the sponsorship deal. Only offer what you can guarantee and be honest with target sponsors. Whilst it isn’t always easy to find funding, your fishing club can flourish with support from local and national sponsors.
If you don’t ask, you don’t get!