Picture yourself running in all the races you want to without having to pay the entry fee. Imagine being able to participate in any sport, game, or event no matter how much they cost. Picture the scene of receiving free shoes, clothing, and gear for your athletic activities.
It is common for athletes to want sponsorship without having a clue to achieve this goal. While many people think that you can only become sponsored if you are an elite athlete, but that is not the case.
The following steps can give you some ideas of how to become a sponsored athlete. This process is frequently misunderstood and knowing how to get sponsorship will give you an advantage. Soon you might be able to gain sponsorship and receive money for doing your favorite athletic activities.
How to Become a Sponsored Athlete
Understand the Reasons Companies Choose to Sponsor Athletes
The main reasons companies choose to sponsor athletes is as a way to sell their services or products. Each company will rely on different marketing strategies and some see sponsorship as a marketing tool. These companies will pick athletes that represent the target market. Most people picture sponsored athletes as being elite, but sometimes a company will look for an attractive one or simply someone that meets their goal, such as an “edgy” athlete to market to teens. When you start thinking about how to get sponsored by supplement companies or any company, think about the image you present and search for companies that would want your business.
Build Your Audience in Preparation
Even if you do well in a race, that won’t be enough and not everyone realizes this. Unless there is an audience paying attention to what you do (not including those at the race), companies will see you as almost useless. Only a few people are able to create this audience just by winning thanks to media coverage. Most athletes, however, will need to gain an audience through social media networks or writing a blog. Although they take some time to make, blogs are cheap, easy, and effective. You can also use a business you run or your other talents (like music) to build your audience.
Choose Your Sponsorship Type
There are many different types of sponsorship, including receiving free products, getting discounts, entering races for free, having travel paid for, or even simply earning money. The general rule is that if you get more attention, you can ask for more, but there aren’t any set rules. Each company will evaluate what you bring to them and then create an offer and to learn how to become a sponsored athlete, you need to understand that.
Find Potential Sponsors
A key part of how to become a sponsored athlete is considering all potential sponsors, no matter how small the company is. Small companies have their own advantages, such as getting to know you better. After narrowing down your options, figure out who to talk to. In the case of large companies, look for their PR firms or marketing departments. In the case of small companies, you can contact the owners. You can also ask someone you know who works for or is sponsored by the company to talk to.
Get in Contact
Create a short proposal that is 50 to 100 words, telling them about yourself, your audience (size and demographics) and what you want. Be humble, but let the company know what you will do for them and what you expect in return. Keep in mind that if you contact larger companies, you will have a lot of competition.
How to Get Sponsored by Supplement Companies
Create a Brand
The process of how to get sponsored by supplement companies also involves multiple steps. First, you need to consider how marketable you are and work to brand yourself. Do so through social media, blogs, videos, and other tools. Supplement companies are more likely to consider sponsoring you if you have a brand.
Consider Product Sponsorship
You may want more, but don’t pass up the opportunity to take a product-only sponsorship. This will give you the chance to work with the company and improve your brand via their Twitter and Facebook followings. Soon your brand will grow and you can get more (and better) sponsorship.
Work hard to give yourself a professional appearance and always take the opportunity to socialize with supplement companies, photographers, magazine editors, promoters, or judges. These people talk to each other and knowing a few can get your foot in the door, leading to a sponsorship.
Take the Right Photos
All athletes who want to learn how to become a sponsored athlete need professional photos, but that’s not it. You want to pick a photographer with experience in the industry so they can show off your physique and abilities. Consider photographs and investment and use them wisely.
Be in Top Form for Photos
If you are lucky enough to be told that a supplement company or magazine hired a photographer to take pictures of you, be sure that you arrive in shape. If you show up in your off-season physique, the photos will probably never get used and you will waste everyone’s time. Instead, maintain a good reputation by ensuring you only need two or three weeks at any point in time to get ready for a photo shoot and be honest with the photographer if you need more time.
Before and After
Don’t pass on offers to use a product and become a “before and after” photo to show the transformation of the product. If you get an offer like this while you are off-season, it will be the perfect time to boost your sponsorship and career. Doing before and after photos can get your foot in the door with your favorite supplement company, leading to more fame and recognition.
Find a Champion Trainer
Be sure to select a trainer who is well-respected. They will take your physique and abilities to the next level and if they have a great deal of influence, they may even help you become a sponsored athlete.
The following video gives you more detailed information on how to become a sponsored athlete: