Every week, I receive a multiple inquiries related to Hunt Valley Horsepower’s sponsor team. The inquiries range from ‘How does my company become a sponsor?’ and ‘How do you choose your sponsors?’ to ‘Can you recommend a sponsor for [insert business function]?’. All answers are at the ready.
Our esteemed sponsors are active members of the Hunt Valley Horsepower community. Our sponsors have been recommended by our community. A few have provided service to my own vehicles over my 11 years of holding residence in Maryland. Even in cases where I have personal experience, I will query the community during Saturday morning conversations, on the Facebook Group Page and in e-mails. To call a company a sponsor, I must be able to recommend them without hesitation. Of course, no business is perfect. Even after 16 years of corporate healthcare management and winning a few customer service awards along the way, there were situations where I could have provided better service. The same goes for any business. The bottom line is that our sponsors come with high level of business quality and customer trust.
Managing Hunt Valley Horsepower events, managing the social media platforms, managing current sponsor relations, signing new sponsors, administering horsepowering.com, designing t-shirts, writing a weekly newsletter, working with event site management and support staff, etc. has become my full-time occupation. It’s a labor of love. It’s not a labor of great financial gain; therefore, it may be viewed as challenging not to accept all interested sponsors. Money isn’t the driver. It comes down to our people and it comes down to integrity. I simply choose the most respected businesses. Can I recommend the company to our community? If the answer is ‘yes’, that’s the start of a potential partnership.
Since March, 2013, 18 vetted, respected and honorable sponsors have joined the team. While there is a no-solicitation policy in effect for our primary gathering area of Hunt Valley Towne Centre, sponsors are permitted to represent their businesses in a fashion that respects Greenberg Gibbons Commercial – the management team of HVTC – and Hunt Valley Horsepower’s vision of a gathering that isn’t commercialized. Sponsors also benefit from business promotion on horsepowering.com, social media, the weekly newsletter, clothing, from a business-to-business perspective and so on.
Unfortunately, there have been and are non-sponsoring businesses present on Saturday mornings that do not understand the message. Some choose to continually skirt and violate the solicitation guidelines even after repeated notifications. If you’re reading this and you feel that these words are directed at your business, there’s a good chance that you’re not involved in the community for the proper reasons. Our community was founded to provide a platform to express our diverse set of automotive enthusiasm. Our sponsor support helps pay for event insurance, security, signage, website fees and even items like vests and refreshments for our Adopt-A-Road clean-up sessions. Our community will not be viewed as a captive audience for businesses that do not have our best interests in mind. Its not respectful to the property owners and their vendors at our primary gathering location. Its not respectful to our community, my company and our sponsors. Our sponsors abide by the site guidelines. They are doing it right. I will continue to provide our sponsors with an expanding platform of promotion while working within the guidelines that allow our community to thrive.
Where can you learn about the esteemed sponsors of Hunt Valley Horsepower? Here’s the place -- horsepowering.com/sponsors. Visit their websites and business locations when in need of their expert services. To my sponsors, thank you! Without you, this inspired undertaking would not be possible.