I have just finished doing some work for a nutrition association and I think they are in a good place right now. Nutrition is at the top of people’s minds these days, especially with the new Canada Food Guide coming out. Companies are vying to have their food group included in the Guide and have their food group considered as essential to a healthy body. All of these companies know what it means in terms of sales to have their food group included in the Guide.
In short, this association can’t be at a better time when it comes to seeking sponsors. For companies, this association is the strategic leader when it comes to food nutrition, they put the science behind food. Any corporation that wants to cozy up to the food bunch, knows that a relationship with this association is more the strategic way to go vs. becoming involved in a more direct sales environment. For the association, the media is doing your job by shining a light on the food industry (overall) and positioning your association as the expert.
In sponsorship sales, as in most sales, timing is everything. When someone wants your product, it is time to stoke the fire. It is a lot more difficult to get anyone excited about an opportunity when it is the last thing on their mind; for example, an Olympic sport, in the second year of four years in between competitions. Conversely, you want to make the pitch when fever is running high, there is more to lose from not being involved and the event experience is memorable. In the case of this association, the media are making food an Olympic year and the timing for a close relationship is right, especially an association with an organization who is viewed as a trusted leader in the industry.
Sales is difficult enough. You might as well have everything working in your favour to increase your odds for success. This includes timing your requests so that the company motivation for making a deal is high.