50+ Sample Sponsorship Agreements

What Is a Sponsorship Agreement?

A sponsorship agreement is a written document that outlines the contract terms and conditions of a sponsor and a beneficiary or organizer. The former effectively agrees to finance the latter’s event, activity, or product on mutually agreed terms. 

According to Pledge Sports, football is one of the most popular sports in the world. Dedicated fans all over the world tune in to football games so much that it has permeated every aspect of public life. So it comes as no surprise that endorsement deals and sponsorships are abundant for the world’s biggest football teams. According to the online article, the top two teams- Real Madrid and Manchester United- have accumulated sponsorships worth $220 and $209 million respectively from big brands like Chevrolet and Adidas.  

Key Players in a Sponsorship Agreement

Organizer: One example where sponsorship is common and prevalent is in the event management industry. Holding and executing events do not just take a lot of preparation and planning, it also needs a significant amount of funding. Organizers are usually tasked with creating an event budget and crafting a strategic marketing plan. Part of that plan may include enlisting sponsors. There are many benefits to having another company sponsor your event. The single most important one being, of course, is that it cuts expenses. You do not need to worry too much about coming up with the funds if a sponsor is willing to pay for your event or activity. As the organizer, your task and function is to handle the sponsorship money responsibly, implement the event, and deliver results. Sponsor: There would not be any need for a sponsorship agreement if there were no sponsor or sponsors. Sponsors can fall under different categories such as individuals, corporations and private institutions, and even government agencies. The reason for the sponsorship may vary as well. But typically, the sponsoring party always has some goal, agenda or interest in mind when they choose to finance and support the benefiting party because there are benefits to being a sponsor, especially if it is a major or popular event. The sponsoring company can achieve high levels of brand exposure; and there’s a lot to gain from the networking involved in partnerships and sponsorships. Depending on the agreed terms, being a sponsor could also mean fertile ground for reaching out to potential clients and customers and the chance to tap into new markets. In other words, being a sponsor can open the door to more opportunities and business growth.

Possible Sponsorship Scenarios

In the world of marketing and branding, sponsorships can be seen everywhere. You can see it courtside at major athletic games or engraved in marble on a school building. Whatever the scenario, it’s safe to say that sponsorships act as a lifeline for a lot of people and organizations. The examples below are just some scenarios where sponsorships can clearly be seen:    

Sports: You only need to notice the brand logos found on a professional basketball player’s jersey or on the shorts of your favorite UFC or mixed martial art’s fighter. Sponsorships dominate the sports world because of how popular they are not just with fans, but with the general public. Sponsorship deals can be high-profile and they come with a barrage of promotional market tactics. With the likes of icons such as Michael Jordan or Serena Williams, brands can instantly ride the fame of these sports superstars. It benefits both parties when retailers and brands win key endorsements with major sports athletes. The mutual brand association itself says enough already. Events: A lot of events are showcases of sponsorships. One major event may have multiple sponsors, and each with varying degrees of support. Highly televised programs such as the Super Bowl, NBA Playoffs, or the Olympics are ideal spaces for brands and companies to truly take advantage of. Event organizers know all too well that sponsorships can help contribute to an activity’s overall success. If your event is backed by well-established corporations and brands, that’s not only added financial support but it’s added credibility as well. When your activity is sponsored by big brands, it outwardly suggests that your event can be at par with these brands. Education: Scholarships and grants are popular forms of student financial aid. There are different types of aid and each entails a sponsorship of sorts. A student may be a beneficiary of an individual, a foundation, a private institution (e.g., bank), or even the state government itself (e.g., federal student aid). The reasons for paying for someone else’s education vary from case to case. Foundations have scholarship funds that help deserving but underprivileged students attend a good school. Athletic college scholarships are common and highly coveted especially by high school students. It gives talented high school athletes a free ticket to college. In sum, when a sponsor agrees to funding a beneficiary’s education, it can cover more than just tuition. A full academic scholarship covers tuition, room and board, meals, textbooks, and even supplies. Nonprofit Organizations: NGOs or non-government organizations are not like typical corporate organizations where making a profit is the main goal. These types of organizations usually advocate for something greater than just money. These may be cause-driven like the promotion of environmental conservation or social justice. Most of these organizations also tend to focus on a certain sector or problem in society. NGOs typically have the backing and support of multiple donors and benefactors. They need this support in order to fund the different programs that advance their organization’s mission. A plain example would be corporate social responsibility or CSR programs of companies. The typical scenario would be these companies partner with an NGO or other beneficiaries and pay to get involved or give back to their communities.

Tips for Getting Sponsors  

Obtaining sponsorships is not easy. It takes skillful planning and negotiation, persistent drive and above all, perseverance. In one way, it can be likened to job hunting. It takes a lot of patience and even rejections before a door of opportunity opens. However, there are ways you can improve your chances of persuading a sponsor to help your cause. It might be helpful to keep these tips in mind:      

Provide Options: Most people like to be presented with options. Companies have the propensity to weigh benefits, risks, and potential losses. With that notion in mind, it might be good if you present your prospective donors a selection to choose from. Package deals are a good way to start. For event organizers, package sponsorship may come in various shapes and forms. Some donors may opt to provide in-kind support while others offer cash or even provide manpower. It is important to categorize sponsorships and their benefits to make it easier for donors to choose. For example, an event company creates three sponsorship packages to choose from: gold, silver, and bronze. The gold entails more benefits in exchange for a higher sponsorship amount. The silver and bronze categories also possess their own conditions and benefits. Make sure to specify each package well and enumerate their benefits. Do Your Research: When you are scouting for possible sponsors, it is always a good idea to do background research first. You don’t want to be caught off guard or unprepared. If you are looking for potential vendors, one way is to come up with a shortlist of contenders. And in order to do this, you would need to do thorough research on each prospect. Weigh the pros and cons of having them as potential benefactors then make your decision. Be Professional: Like any formal business transaction, always keep it professional. The usual way of reaching out to donors is via letter of intent. Your proposal should strike the right balance between informative and persuasive. Think of it as your sales pitch. Provide the prospective donor with all the key information; you can even include a deck or kit of whatever it is you’re promoting or selling. The language you use is important too. Be professional but don’t assume they know everything. Before addressing the need for sponsorship, offer to give a brief history about the event or organization.Add Value: The tone of your proposal should suggest that there is value in what you’re promoting or hoping to achieve. You need to explain why getting enough support is important. Capitalize on what the donor can possibly gain by their act of sponsoring. From the get go, you want to be able to establish what’s in it for them in exchange for their support. Because like in any successful business partnership, you want to make them feel special and valued. On a side note, how you choose your benefactors is also crucial. If you are serious about proper messaging and consistent branding, getting the right sponsor is paramount. Make sure your values align with theirs. Or at the very least, the sponsors you choose are brands that you can get behind. In other words, there doesn’t exist any conflict of interest or mismatch of principles.

How to Create a Sponsorship Agreement

When you’ve crossed the hurdle of obtaining sponsorships, the next step is to solidify the agreement. This may take some formidable give and take and a series of negotiations. Both sponsor and organizer may contribute to the crafting of terms and conditions. Follow the easy guide below to create your own sponsorship agreement:   

Step 1: Introduce the Parties

All agreements are made between two or more parties. The first step in crafting your agreement is to provide the complete details of the sponsor and organizer/beneficiary. Include the full name, complete address, and date of the agreement’s effectivity. For example, an events company throws a big launch party and its main sponsor is a well-known liquor company. The introduction section of the contract would need to include each company’s name and complete business address.     

Step 2: Provide a Background

The sponsorship contract would need to contain a short description of the nature of the agreement. What is the reason for entering into the agreement? What is the central event, advocacy, or product that ties both parties? Before outlining the terms and conditions, an informative and concise introduction is required. Details include but are not limited to the name of the event, date of engagement, location, past achievements, etc.  

Step 3: Outline the Benefits

Part of the terms and conditions stated in the sponsorship agreement should be the benefits of the partnership. What is inclusive of the sponsorship package? Many companies gain something in exchange for their donations and generosity. Aside from financial sponsorship, some agreements stipulate media mileage. To illustrate, exposure is of utmost importance to achieve high traffic and participation for events. For example, an event organizer may engage the media for a particular event. If the network or media outlet agrees to be one of the sponsors, the organizer may get added benefits such as coverage and other marketing advantages.   

Step 4: Culminate with a Confirmation Statement

Any contract should conclude with a declaration to reaffirm the agreement. The declaration should be stated in first person with signature lines provided below it. There needs to be adequate space for the parties to sign their names, designations, and the date.   


What should I look for in a sponsorship agreement?

There are several things to take note of in a sponsorship agreement. These include length or duration of the contract, functions and responsibilities of each party, benefits of the partnership, grounds for termination, and other general terms and conditions.

What is an example of sponsorship?

The plain and obvious signs of sponsorship can be seen in sports or public arenas. Logos of well-established brands and companies can be seen on every corner and on every material. Big names such as Pepsi, Procter & Gamble, and Nike are famous brands that sponsor a lot of different events, shows, and people.

What should I offer in return for sponsorship?

In exchange for financial support, you can offer to feature the sponsor’s company logo or brand in promotions. Recognition and exposure matter. In cases such as events, participating companies and sponsors are normally given booths to advertise their services or products. Mentions and brand association is vital too, especially in the world of social media.

Sponsorship agreements are crucial in promoting clarity and accountability between parties. And you want to make sure you cover all the important areas. Still unsure of how to proceed? Download a sample template above and simply customize it to fit your needs!