As a sponsored athlete for two large U.S companies, it is my pleasure to discuss this topic with you. I am going to make it as simple as possible…
1) You may not want to hear this one, but its huge! Create a network! You must have a network that you can reach. A sponsorship is a partnership that needs to make both parties happy. The sponsor supplies the athlete with free product/promotion/support and opportunities, in turn the athlete promotes an organic, positive image of the brand. If you do not have a network you can market on, the partnership is only one sided. That’s not a very happy business relationship at all, is it? You wouldn’t like to give, give, give and receive nothing back either – so of course it makes sense. You need to be able to sell, create more awareness, and promote the brand in turn.
2) Along with creating a network; you must BRAND YOURSELF. Creating your own brand and making it obvious as to who you are, what your mission/vision and goals are is very appealing to potential sponsors.
3) When seeking sponsorship from a company, you want to be real and authentic! You need to know WHAT you stand for. This is important because once you know this, you will easily be able to choose which companies you stand behind. Being an sponsored athlete works best when you are genuine and organic, seek companies that align with your own brand. You need to truly believe in the product(s) and vision the company has that you are pursuing.
4) Make the brand aware of who you are, and have your audience know you love the product/brand. You can do this by tagging them in your social media outlets and creating brand awareness. This allows the company to see who you are, and recognize that you are a loyal supporter. This will help you for step 5…
5) Now that you have a network, you are a brand, you know what companies you want to reach out too, it will be obvious to the sponsor that you are a loyal supporter – the next step is; GET IN CONTACT! Believe in yourself and be ruthless in pursuing what you want! You must stay persistent in this step. There are most likely hundreds of people going after the same sponsorship you want, so you must stay determined! Create yourself an ATHLETE RESUME that states who you are, your accomplishments, goals, and why you believe you would be a great asset to the team. Send this in multiple times if you have too (but don’t make them hate you! I am not responsible for making them hate you if you don’t know when enough is “too much!”) Sometimes emails can go unread, lost, or even unacknowledged. Send your resume in a couple times if you have too, I’ve done it and it worked! Companies like to see that you are determined to become apart of the team.
6) Don’t get butt-hurt if you are denied. Keep pushing, keep working hard, keep dreaming. What’s meant to be, will be!
I hope these steps helped to give you a better idea in how to pursue your dream sponsorship goals! Don’t stop believing in yourself. Thank you for reading and GOOD LUCK!!