With just over one year to go before the next Southern Lakes Festival of Colour, organisers have launched a new sponsorship category aimed at building support from the local business community in return for a package of benefits.

Firms can elect to become either a Local Business Supporter or Local Business Partner for the 2015 event for an investment of $1,000+gst or $2,000+gst respectively. Both options can be paid in instalments. Companies already signed up include Penberthy Insurance Otago Ltd, Aspiring Wealth Management and Aspiring Lifestyle Retirement Village.

In return, Local Business Supporters receive a package of hospitality and marketing benefits including a priority booking period, choice of reserved seating, a double invitation to all festival functions including the launch plus their company name on the festival programme, website and social media channels.

Local Business Partners receive all these benefits plus six complimentary tickets to a show or shows of their choice, the opportunity to include a promotional offer in one of the festival’s monthly e-newsletters, their company logo in a special ‘thank you’ advert in the local media before the festival and specially discounted advertising rates with Radio Wanaka.

Festival of Colour General Manager, Lindsey Schofield said the new sponsorship categories give local business owners the chance to maximise their return on investment by creating specific marketing opportunities around their involvement with the event.

“We’ve designed the new packages around the need for local businesses to receive something back in return for their financial support. The variety of performances over the six-day festival from theatre and music to inspiring talks and family shows provides excellent opportunities for corporate entertainment and promotion to a loyal, mainly local audience,” she said.

“We already have some wonderful corporate sponsors, many of whom return year after year after seeing the benefits of their association with the festival, but we recognise this level of financial support isn’t feasible for many smaller firms who still want to be involved. At the same time, it will also help broaden the festival’s funding base.”

Ms Schofield urged business owners seeking more information to contact her at the festival office in Wanaka.

Local Business Supporters and Partners compliment the Festival of Colour’s existing gold, silver and bronze sponsor groups that start at $6,000 as well as its media and accommodation partners that provide contra support.