Strengthening Relationships with sponsors

this year, one of our goals as a team is to strengthen the realtionship between us and our main sponsor.
I was wondering what other teams do with their sponsors (in addition to regularly updating them, sending them team merch, etc.), as we are currently drawing a bit of a blank.
any help is greatly appreciated!


Not on my current team, but on a previous one, the team invited all the sponsors to an awards ceremony where they got at least a plaque and some team swag. All students must attend, two of them give short speeches on how much robotics has helped them grow or something, and dinner for everyone. Not pizza but something nicer, a real meal, donated by a group of the parents. This happened at the end of the season, after CMP, so we could show off any hardware we earned, as well as driving the robot. We invite each sponsor to drive as well, but the student drive team had so much more practice with it…

If such a thing seems out of place, at least invite the sponsor(s) to see build season once or twice, hopefully near the end when everyone is being productive and/or the robot is almost finished.

Also, an engineering design review is a great way to loop in the sponsors. On the Saturday after kickoff, our designs are essentially done, but often there are two or more competing concepts. Students present these concepts in detail, hopefully with a working prototype, to a panel of experts - engineers, executives, etc. who them offer feedback on good and weak points of each idea. Plus dinner. Sponsors love this, as they are really helping the team, but only have to commit to 3-4 hours on a single Saturday.


After school is out, we visit each sponsor. We usually have 4-5 students and 1-2 mentors.
We give each sponsor a goody bag containing a team picture, medals that we may have won and a copy of our flight log.
The Flight Log is a magazine we make every year showing our history, student and mentor pictures, pictures taken during the build season, financials, engineering awards and a brief rundown of the robot attributes to win said award.

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