What to do when a company says "No" to sponsorship?

How do y’all turn things around when a company says “No” to sponsorship?

I currently offer a custom tier that’s less than our base tier and allows the company to support the event and get exposure without actually having to attend. This has only worked once though :joy:

Something I like to do is offer demographics that cater to the company. I had a company that focuses on community college students or high school students further education and they thought my university event wouldn’t be worth it for them. By pulling up the demographics from the year before I was able to show we have a decent amount of students that would be a good fit for them and that encouraged them to rethink our event


It honestly depends on why they said no. Sometimes it is timing related (they’re too busy or maybe your event is too soon), sometimes they don’t have enough budget left, sometimes it’s a bad fit. I always like to ask explicitly - people won’t always tell you but when they do, it’s helpful!

Not having enough budget left is often the easiest to solve because the fix could be discounting your price or switching them to a lower sponsorship tier.

Bad timing is harder to fix, but gives you info to reach out earlier for your next event.

In terms of it being a bad fit, it’s important to find out why - maybe they don’t target students, maybe they don’t have internships at all, etc. There is a small chance the reason it’s a bad fit is due to not fully understanding your event/what the benefits of sponsoring are, in which case you can correct and turn it around.