The Perfect Sports Sponsorship Email Template (not what you’re expecting)

You saw the headline, you were thinking “Yes, the perfect email I can copy, paste, & send out to close $1M in deals”.

I know, we’ve seen them all before (many times on platforms just like this). Someone posts the perfect cold email template that promises instant sales.

Here’s the part where I crush your dreams (well, kind of). I don’t have a template that is cut & dry for you to cut & paste.

And really, you don’t want that cut & paste silver bullet. I’ll explain why.

This week on The Inches Podcast Rich and I dove into the perfect sales email for sponsorship and the structure you should follow (not a template).

You can hear the full episode HERE but as always some points below.

First, sales are about building rapport

This is something we forget a lot in all of sales. Our goal is to build rapport with our prospects.

What is rapport?…well:

noun

  1. A close and harmonious relationship in which the people or groups concerned understand each other’s feelings or ideas and communicate well.

Sometimes we get so caught up in our goal and hitting it fast that we forget this vital part, your job is to help our prospective client reach their marketing goals with our sponsorship assets. They don’t care about our sales goals.

In sales, at every touchpoint, we either build positive or negative rapport with our prospects & clients. Our goal is to build a positive rapport with them, especially when you first reach out.

You can’t build rapport with a templated email.

Again for the people in the back…you can’t build rapport with a templated email.

Why? Well, for one thing, you won’t stand out. The worst thing you can do is pull one from Hubspot or whatever blog pops up when you search ‘best cold email template’.

You see, that sales template was not created with your assets, prospect, or their needs in mind.

It would be like showing up to my house and bringing a Broncos jersey (I’m a Raiders fan) to start a friendship with me.

So as you think about your cold outreach, think about how you can build rapport with your client rather than the quick template.

Now, with all the above in mind, there is a structure we can follow.

The Game-Winning Structure For Sponsorship Sales Emails

Look at your prospect’s news section or blog or LinkedIn page

This is the key that Rich brings up constantly in his sales on the podcast…and it works.

In order to understand what our clients may need (build rapport), we have to understand what their business goals might be. Taking the time to do research shows you care about their goals from the get-go.

The best way to do this is by looking at the news section on their website. Most companies have them at the bottom of their website. Sometimes you just have to search the company name then blog. If neither of those work…companies have a LinkedIn page they usually post to.

These resources have great info on what our assets might fit with at the prospect company.

Some examples of what you may find:

  • A new product launch
  • A community initiative they are launching
  • A new acquisition of a company
  • A company or community goal that they recently hit
  • A new hire or HR initiative

All of these things bring fit to the partnership assets we offer…but even more so it gives us a focal point for why we are reaching out.

Caring and knowing about their business helps us build rapport right off the bat.

If the first email is a test, the company news page on a prospect’s website is the cheat sheet.

Bring context to what you’ve found on the site

Now you have something that no template can create for you, a reason to reach out.

In sales, context is a superpower.

Unfortunately, a lot of people in sales reach out because they think you would be a good prospect for revenue generation. The prospect has no reason to answer this email.

But if we have context for why we are reaching out…and it is important to the prospect and their sales goal…we can build positive rapport.

Now fit your asset to the news/need from the sponsor’s website

Now that you know what might be a need, you can offer an idea of what might work to help from your assets.

For example, if the prospect is launching a new product, finding an asset that would help educate your fans on the product and maybe a coupon to drive early sales.

If the prospect just brought on a new hire, maybe suggesting that the company offer a suite with a video post on social that shows the experience to show the company values its employees.

If the prospect is launching a new community initiative, offering a package around gameday and social media recognition of the initiative with fans.

One thing sets this structure of context apart from templates: You are doing the work for them. You are doing all the thinking work for them by finding assets that fit their goals.

In sales, this makes our lives easier for our prospects. They have 10 million things to think about…making them think about how your asset might be a fit is low on their brainpower list.

So when you construct your email, offer a specific package for them to think about in context to their need.

Let me finish this structure talk with the following: You may be wrong on their needs…and that is ok

Yes, this is an educated guess on what they may need as a business, but many times you will be wrong.

The effort though leads to great things. I can’t tell you how many times this has led to an answer of “We’re all set there…but I forwarded to Dan in HR and he thinks there might be a fit for X initiative.”

With this structure, you show you care which builds rapport. The reason we build positive rapport is now might just not be the right time.

If we send an email that is templated, there may be no shot later on when there may be a fit.

But if we structure the email correctly and build context, we have another shot at reaching out or having the prospect reach out again later.

Templates kill rapport, context and the right structure builds it.

I know, I said not template…

But I would be remiss if I didn’t leave you with something that you can build on as you create your emails.

This email is a shell, you should not word for word it. Don’t be lazy, get creative, and do the research. But you will see the structure from above.

— — — –

[Intro to prove I’m not a robot] Hi Jen, Nick here from the Washington Sentinels. First congrats on the new location downtown. I’ve walked by but haven’t gone in yet. I will definitely change that this week!

[Acknowleding you did the research] I noticed you all were launching a new product this quarter and couldn’t help but think we could promote it to our fans with some of our assets in the stadium at the Sentinels.

[CONTEXT for how we can help] In particular, we’ve seen a ton of success with product launch through boothing on the concourse and social media mentions to our fans, which number over 1M nationwide and in the arena.

[Quick & easy ask] Interested in learning more with a quick call this week?

— — — –

Again, do not word for word this. Otherwise, you’ll sound like every other person out there.

But this structure will help you get calls and, probably more important, make your sales calls easier when you do speak to them if they are interested as you know exactly what to focus on.

Don’t sell flour, sell the cake

One of the best ways sales has been explained to me is using flour (I know weird right, but it’s good).

When you buy flour, you aren’t buying it for what it is (powder), you buy it for what you can make from it.

If you walked up to me and tried to sell me flour, I would have to think about whether I needed it or not.

If you walked up to me and asked me to bake a cake, and then offered to sell me the ingredients…I have a context to the value of what I’m trying to be sold. The flour now has value it didn’t before.

To build rapport, build context…let’s dump the sales template and replace it with a structure that helps us bring value to our prospects.

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