Getting Sponsored?

Discussion in 'The Gutter' started by B1105, Apr 25, 2004.

  1. B1105

    B1105 New Member

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    Just a curious question for anyone sponsored out there for trials, whats the process and such? Do you need to be a Pro level rider or can you be sport or expert and just promote the sponsor's image? I'm just kinda interested if possible in getting sponsored, but just for the sake of being sponsored. I dont care really about getting discounts or any of that stuff but just like maybe recongition. I'm about a sport level rider after 3 months of trials but have been biking for many years (downhill, freeride, urban, xc, road). In addition, is it a necesity to compete and be ranked high? I'm from NJ and almost no comps around here except motorama.

    Just curious,
    any input would be awesome


    Byron
     
  2. Andreas

    Andreas All About Trials

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    3 months of trials isn't enough to get sponsored im pretty sure.
     

  3. ascentrek

    ascentrek Original power yuppie

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    This is an interesting topic. There was an article in a bike mag a while back that spoke to people who were sponsored, people that wanted to be sponsored, and the sponsors themselves. Some interesting facts in that article.

    As for some facts on sponsoring and being sponsored, here's some of my viewpoints on it.

    Sponsors: Most mfg/companies want to sign a sponsor or two or more. You have to remember the tag line "Whats in it for me". Most companies want advertising; it helps the bottom dollar. But for them to 'sign' you, you'll need to be a well known name in your area... i.e. bike trials. If you make it to a true sponsorship level, there are usually contracts you have to sign with each company. From there, they may pay you a small salary and give you bike/parts to ride/test.

    Sponsoree: (you). IF you are sponsored, you have to make sure you are following any contract guidelines, but further more, making videos, winning comps, dong PR, etc. This can be a full time job, sometimes not, depending on the type of sponsorship you gain.

    "I wanna be sponsoree". This is funny. Most kids would love nothing more than to tell their peers "I'm sponsored, etc. My youngest brother is a semi-pro street skater. He is in more than 20 top skating videos (In-line). He's been given things, been paid to compete a few times, but doesn't want to skate the type of venue's the sponsors want him too (skate park, X-games, etc). He likes street, and there's not much spectators at that type of venue without being somewhat illegal. Regardless, he makes it into videos. Many kids at the skate park know him by name. They ask "are you sponsored?" just because you're good. I meet at least 3 kids at every skate park that claim they're sponsored... I usually laugh to myself. They want it for the attention, but the sponsor (if there were to be one) gets nothing out of it - "Whats in it for me".

    Most riders are affiliated with a shop or two. Some now, are from on-line retailers. People like AndrewT and Bill R, and Kevin S. have different levels of sponsorship. Some get perks, others money. But they do ride, create videos, and promote their sponsors. That's big for the few trials-shops that are out there. This is such a small sport, that we need to self advertise to keep quality shops around. When I need parts or have questions, I ask the pro level riders, and they explain that I can buy that part at "Webcyclery" (Plug). So I do.

    For you, seeking sponsorship will be work. Local shops don't have the budget to pay someone a salary to simply ride for them. The advertising would have to pay off. Just run the economics. However, riding for mfg'rs can be a different story. If you are good, and there is a market for what you do that can be banked on, then prove it to the company, and get sponsored. You'll prolly have to do demo's, create comps, etc. Being in Trials, you'll have to travel... alot. If you ride for a local shop, you'll prolly get discounts on parts.... That helps. And sometimes that is what you need to start doing first before seeking fully paid sponsorship.

    Our local shop promoted the hell out of Specialized. We got "home grown" or "Grass roots" sponsorship from Specialized. We got discounts beyond the wholesale price to ride their bikes all over in every competition we could go to. It was work. We had a car that had "Specialized" decked out on every square-inch, and took demo-rides to race events.

    I am Sponsored now: I work a regular job that allows me to take off the time to ride and compete. They don't get anything out of it (Other than productivity from me) in regards to my riding. However, I make enough money to spend on components. I don't mind purchasing things at regular price just to keep the little guys in business. So in essence, my yuppie corporate job allows the small shops to use people like you to advertise to other corporate yuppie workers that are dying to do something else that drive a mouse.

    Good LUCK! Ride on.

    edit: I buy Maxxis tires because April Lawyer is hot... and she stairs at me through a poster. (not to mention, they're good tires).
     
  4. Andreas

    Andreas All About Trials

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    ...what's an mfg?
     
  5. B1105

    B1105 New Member

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    I know 3 months isnt enough time, I'm just curious right now.

    MFG is manufacturing i believe
     
  6. afrobot

    afrobot Aluminum is for recycling

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    MFG is MuddaFuGa. I'm not sure how I got sponsored? I'm a mid level expert who cant make it to most comps or my crews demos.Our local
    mobile repair guy was like "you're sposored ".Which is good because the shop I work at interferes more than facilitates my riding.

    Fuck Colorado Cyclist!
     
  7. oicdn

    oicdn Guest

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    Being sponsored is more or less selling yourself. I've gotten 7 sponsors on my car. 2 Sponsors when I was a breakdancer in High School (New Balance shoes and a local shop that sold clothing, wax, turntables, etc....) It's attitude and personality ON TOP of what you have to offer as being a representative or billboard of a company. I mean, it's a REALLY simple question that shouldn't really be asked if you sit and think about it.....

    Seriously. Imagine owning a business, and you have TONS of people asking for free stuff. :down: I mean, they don't ask to buy it cheap, alot of the people asking for sponsorship want FREE stuff. Now, you're this business and some person you have NO CLUE of who they are, where they came from, etc. Asks you to sponsor them. It all depends on how they presented themselves in thier letter, and in cases of a sport, footage and contest credentials are the best ways to get sponsored. Results speak for themselves, not promises. Anybody can make a promise....not EVERYBODY can place or perform.....

    Now, that being said, there ARE people who you've noticed have asstons of sponsorships and you're like WTF do they have/can they do that I don't have/can't do? It's called connections....nothing more, nothing less. They know a person, and are halfway decent, but have sponsors....it's called networking.....and although those are a little more rare, they definitly do exist. And it's a shame, cause they take away the "billets" for the people who deserve it.....
     
  8. BBZ2

    BBZ2 Member

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    What is being sponsored? I think the idea behind being sponsored is very ambiguous. I believe there is a huge difference between getting "help" from a company and actually saying that you are sponsored. Sponsorship to me is when you are recieving the majority of your equipment for free. Getting "help" is what most riders have, that is when you get discounted parts, I don't consider this real sponsorship. I guess in general sponsorship is very over rated. Do you want to become sponsered just so you can say you are? The level of sponsorship comes down to what you can do for the company. What can you do if you are a sport level rider? Are you actively invovled with demos? Why become sponsored just to say you are?
     
  9. ascentrek

    ascentrek Original power yuppie

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    Because you can tell your friends that you're cooler than them. Pick up chicks (not that they give a shit). Make yourself feel good (self esteem). Get cheap parts.

    Its all good until you get schooled.
     
  10. oicdn

    oicdn Guest

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    ^^^definitly. It all comes down to what a company can afford to do, and what they're willing to do.

    For example, with my car, I had a "get at cost" and or experimental possible future products and free shipping with most companies, and other were just generous discounts, but still making a SMALL profit off me. In turn I had to ACTIVELY participate in shows (ugh) and pasically become a rolling billboard for them.

    With Breakdancing, it was a little different. New Balance would send me shoes, but to ensure I wasn't just giving them away, I had to send them back. Shipping was paid, but they were just being safe about it as I was also getting running shoes that weren't on the market yet. My local shop would just give me free clothes, but discounts on anything else...so basically it's up to them....

    But for the people who just want to say "I'm sponsored...." You have ALOT to learn....let the sponsors come to you...well, not exactly "FLOCK TO YOU" but perform, place in events...and it'll make it TONS easier....

    It's like being a celebrity. When they were nobody, NOBODY gave them anything, now that they're "the shit" they have all this money but stuff is given to them.....it's the same way in a sense....
     
  11. Elan

    Elan steve french

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    im sponsored by my mommy
     
  12. oicdn

    oicdn Guest

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    That's the best sponsor of em all eh Elan?
     
  13. Elan

    Elan steve french

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    hell yes, because all you have to do for hte sponsor is clean your room sporadicaly and maybe do tbe dishes from time to time
     
  14. WhiteRavenKS

    WhiteRavenKS Well-Known Member

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    "sponsorship" is over rated. dont get me wrong, i love what help i get and all but to tell you the truth- most people have this skewed false image of sponsorship being this rockstar lifestyle when in actuality it is nothing like that at all. you will not find many trials riders who make a living off their riding. very few people in the world can do this and no one can do it off competing alone.

    most so called sponsorship is just an extension of the deals a shop employee would get. i got lucky. i got a shop job at 14 and have now been "in the industry" (pfft... see how dumb that sounds) for over 4 years. because of my shop job, i was able to get the same deals then that i am able to get now, years later from "sponsorship" deals. i got to know lots of people in the know and was able to learn a great deal from them. getting sponsored is nothing but whoring yourself out. you have to be selective though. being sponsored for the sake of saying "im a sponsored rider" is absurd. if you want to be sponsored because you feel you want to help out a company in any way you can because you really like them and their product then pursue it with resumes, hard work, media, exposure- etc.

    basically was bbz2 said already.

    ps- like elan said: sometimes the best sponsors in the world are supportive family members. hit them up first. they are better than most companies ever will be.
     
  15. AndyT

    AndyT New Member

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    just knowing someone who works at a shop can be better than being "sponsored" a lot of times.... very few people in trials actually get paid by a sponsor, most just get cost (as ppl have said over and over). Its all about who you know..
     
  16. silus2000

    silus2000 New Member

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    Lets change the topic to "how to get free shit?"
     
  17. oicdn

    oicdn Guest

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  18. AndyT

    AndyT New Member

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  19. oicdn

    oicdn Guest

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    no I said :rofl: :bigthumb: