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7in7 Series: Sponsorship Solutions for the Future with Jeff Curtis

Join Paula Beadle on this webisode of 7in7 for a conversation with Jeff Curtis, Portland Rose Festival Foundation’s CEO. Jeff’s experience in the sports and events sponsorship arena spans decades. Paula gets down to the nitty gritty to hear more about Jeff’s successful efforts to pivot the iconic festival in the midst of COVID-19 and how he’s strategizing for the future.


If you’d like to see the full interview with more on contract negotiating, selling virtually, storytelling and sponsorship, the future of digital, the power of volunteers, and the need for corporate responsibility and social good, watch the extended interview HERE.


Here are some key insights from the interview:


Integrate sponsors into virtual events

Virtual events are not substituting producing an actual event, but they are an effective way to engage your audience, tell your story and say thank you to sponsors.


At the heart of the story

Sponsorship is not just about delivering benefits to your sponsors – it’s about the story you tell how your sponsors’ support propels your event into the future.


Support without remedy

Tell your sponsors the impact story and share your numbers as a result of COVID. Unabashedly tell your sponsors that you need their support without repayment or deferment.


Preparation is key

Script your conversations so you are prepared to address your sponsors concerns and clearly share your position. Each sponsor has a unique situation and preparing will demonstrate your commitment to the partnership.


Be a solution provider

Be prepared with options and ask questions to understand sponsor’s needs. Show a willingness to get creative and work together to find the best solution.


Collaboration between properties is the future

Many events may not survive after COVID and many are likely to have diminished resources. Look for opportunities to cross-sell partnerships between event properties.


Look for your meaning within your community

Do a little soul searching about your organization. What value are you providing to your community? Sponsors are paying close attention to social good and want to align with properties who value their community impact.



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