A dance exists between the causes and charities that we embrace and the sponsors and partners that support them.

Sometimes their objectives are lock step with each other, other times,distances in thinking to be bridged.

We asked a number of smart cause executives and marketers, what approaches work during our monthly Wikicauses #wikichats. Here are their 20 insights:

Q2 – Sponsorship – How do you work with a corporate sponsor to ensure that your cause’s mandate is respected? #wikichat

1) Great Four Element Resource by our Wikichat VIP Guest Jolkona’s @lamiki A2: Here’s an article I wrote on @mashable about how to “woo” corporate sponsors http://on.mash.to/iezgtT

2) Sponsoring Employee Involvement @Sandra_Scian A2 – I’ve asked them to join the org in other ways – volunteer, planning and attending charity activity. write articles too?

3) Clear Guidelines @yazmaziar Pre-emption. Updated Corp Guidelines for internal stakeholders helps ensure proper orientation before solicitation

4) Private/Public Balance @corinnerd We have with mixed success; use govn’t funding to establish a program then seek corp to sustain it @Sandra_Scian harder with traditional charities receiving gov funds. Fear of losing it if replacement revenue found

5) Defined Areas @jolkona We work with businesses in 3 areas: cause marketing, employee giving, & volunteerism. Outlined here: http://bit.ly/p94Tp6

6) Expectation Setting KidsHelpPhone Clear outline of expectations is key. Don’t be afraid to have difficult conversations – they can strengthen partnerships

7) Controversy/Sensitivity  Can Impede @corinnerd had great govn’t support less so corporate from nat’l perspective, lots of corps find violence against women a scary connect

8 ) Broadness/Generalness a Handicap @YMCACanada With a cause as broad as “Strengthening the Foundations of Community”, challenging 2 align w ideal corp sponsor

9) ROI/Mandate Balance @HartGalla Finding the balance of ROI for a sponsor/mandate is a big challenge..Clear communication is KEY

10) Offence vs.  Defence @artezonline Do you do most of the approaching as part of your business plan or do you find sponsors approach you?

11) Planning Phase @SeanMoffitt And where do you get your sponsors involved – at conception, planning, execution – I find oftentimes too late

12) Tailoring and Homework @snotforprofit Do you tailor a different ask to different sponsors? Do you spend time on research?

13) Lay Your Cards On the Table @mindyourmind_ca Transparency!

14) Philanthropy First @canadahelps We seek out partnerships w/ corps that already have philanthropy as a core value, not just a marketing opp for them

15) CSR Alignment @MeghanReddick At the upfront, during negotiations, make sure your cause is aligned with their CSR strategy

16) Serendipity @corinnerd Think you need to ask when opportunity presents itself. Once actually gave our pitch in an elevator (only 5 floors)

17) True Partnership over Renting Space @SeanMoffitt As a sometime for-profit guy,how do you strike the balance and still ensure your partner gets more than a logo on a poster

18 ) Formalized Agreements @PlanCanada We work with many wonderful corporate sponsors and manage expectations/mandate through gift agreements and MOUs

19) Stick to Your Initial Guns @jolkona Sponsorship, you outline your asks in the very beginning.

20) Information Source @jolkona If you’re looking for ways to get involved with corporate volunteering, check out @RealizedWorth — great blog!

Any other rules of thumbs or approaches that work well between sponsors and causes?

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