3 Tips to Overcoming Your Fears of Sponsorship Proposals
Asking for what you want can be a very uncomfortable process, even in sponsorship proposals.
Asking for business.
Asking for support.
Maybe it feels this way because you’re putting your hard work, your passion… your mission out on the table for others to see. To judge. To weigh in with their thoughts and feedback.
It can be intimidating to think about; let alone DO.
While we’ve talked many times about being confident when approaching potential sponsors, sometimes just having the initial conversation can be the main challenge.
“What do I say?”
“How do I say it?”
I’ve walked many clients through overcoming these fears, and while it’s not the same for everyone… it’s important to recognize that it’s not always about feeling confident.
Sometimes it’s just about taking that first step, despite your fears.
Below, I’ve laid out a few ways I’ve walked my clients through their initial fears of getting sponsorships and sponsorship proposals:
Treat the proposal like a conversation.
While we have a blog post on how to give a winning sponsorship presentation, try not to think of it as something that is huge and intimidating.
Instead, remember that this is YOUR dream. Your business is getting an opportunity to come to fruition. Treat the presentation with the potential sponsor as a conversation, allowing your excitement and passion to shine through.
There’s nothing like genuine conversation to stir questions and discussion, and get a potential sponsor interested in what you’re offering.
Keep it simple.
As we’ve mentioned in other sponsorship presentation blogs, don’t over explain yourself. Present your ideas clearly and concisely, in a way that highlights all the important points.
Bullet out the most relevant points of your proposal on a notecard and recite and/or memorize them. This will help you keep control of the conversation, but also help you avoid “awkward silences” because you’re not sure what to say next.
Keeping focused will help alleviate those pesky self-doubt questions. “Did I explain myself well enough? Why didn’t they have any more questions? Did they get what I was saying?” When you’re prepared, it is easier to be confident in your expertise and your sponsorship proposals.
Treat every presentation as an opportunity to improve.
You can change how you view situations by shifting what you focus on. Approaching every presentation as an opportunity to improve allows you to go into each presentation knowing you’ll leave with something.
Whether you get sponsored or not is, of course, still relevant. However, if you don’t leave shaking hands with a sponsorship agreement in place, you’ve still left with valuable information for your next presentation.
Make it a general practice to review your presentation and your sponsorship proposals following your meeting. If you don’t receive the sponsorship, inquire about the WHY (as if you were an interviewee for a potential job). Self-assessments also work great to go over your points and see if there’s anything you missed along the way.
Honest (and kind) feedback from yourself and others will leave you with more than just opportunity. Soon, it will be a winning strategy for landing sponsorships.
I’ve used these 3 tips with my own fears, and clients as well! I know how intimidating it can be to put your passion and your dream out there.
Don’t let fear hold you back from simply asking for what you need to make your dream happen.
What other practices have worked for you to rid yourself of fear?