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From Olympics to Raleigh SPARKcon: How to build your business with a sponsorship

Featuring Lea-Ann W. Berst, founder and principal consultant at Sleddogg Marketing Management

Learn how to align your business with the best sponsorship opportunity.


Freelancers, especially creatives, typically shy away from “selling” themselves to get new business, but there is another way to meet potential new clients.

Lea-Ann Berst, a global marketer for more than 20 years, will explain how you can use event sponsorships to build relationships with prospects and influencers, while simultaneously improving your visibility and standing as a good citizen in the community.

Freelancers - no differently than corporations – need to develop strategic marketing strategies to grow their business, she says.

Drawing on her vast experience and co-sponsorship of the “My Big Fat Secret” postcard campaign at Raleigh’s SPARKcon arts fest, Lea-Ann will explain the how-tos, dos, don’ts and benefits of using such activities to build your business.

You’ll also learn the secret to success when things don’t go as planned – a lesson learned when she was tasked with helping an Olympic sponsor use its sponsorship to grow its brand.

Lea-Ann founded Sleddogg Marketing Management in 2001, after first gaining 15 years of experience in the corporate world. Her clients come from a variety of industries: technology, e-learning, retail, events management, health and wellness, and others.

Companies such as Lenovo, GSK and Expertus have called her for help in figuring out what sets them and their products apart, and how to communicate that distinction to their markets.

Lea-Ann is a frequent guest lecturer and judge for international marketing award programs. In 2011 the Triangle Business Leader recognized her with a Women in Business award for significant accomplishments in business and community service. Learn more at

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  • A former member
    A former member

    Lea-Ann really drove home the importance of aligning with co-sponsors that compliment your business well and have the same goals for the event.

    November 15, 2012

  • Cyn M.

    Great! Lea-Ann is a wealth of knowledge and expresses in a language we can all understand.

    November 15, 2012

  • Cyn M.

    Lea-Ann ( @marketsleddogg ) spoke to the ICA group about her experience with the Olympic Games and, more close to home, her co-sponsor experience with Cyn ( @CynergieStudio ) during SPARKcon. Thanks to everyone who came out and a special thanks to Lea-Ann!

    November 15, 2012

  • Irene G.

    Lea Ann was awesome in helping us understand the big picture in marketing. I loved the energy and the education she shared with our group.

    November 15, 2012

  • Cyn M.

    NC STATE MONTEITH ENGINEERING RESEARCH CTR - Look for Meetup signs and it will be in room 246. See you there!

    November 14, 2012

  • Cyn M.

    Whether you are a small or large company this discussion will help you understand how to think about and choose the best partner, sponsorship opportunity, or event to align your business with for maximum exposure and increased revenues. Dynamic and informative.

    November 8, 2012

  • Cyn M.

    NC State Centennial campus is large. if you are unfamiliar, keep this in mind when approaching the building for parking. If you are in the garage take the elevator to level A. Then go up the stairs to the second floor. Look for sign to conference room 246.

    If you din't park in the in garage but outside go up the front stairs, and the door should be ajar. The conference room is on the second floor, look for sign to conference room 246.

    October 29, 2012

  • Cyn M.

    You can see the postcards we collected during Raleigh’s SPARKcon arts festival for the “My Big Fat Secret” campaign here: Check them out and let us know which touched your soul or made you laugh.

    October 23, 2012

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