By Leandro Lutz
Most companies know the strength of the sport as brand marketing, whether at a sporting event, team or an athlete. We see the brands exposed in clothes, events, social medias, on TV, in the press, that is, in several communication channels.
And what are the gains for the companies? Increase in number of sales, change or reinforcement of image, new markets, loyalty, be more visible for a longer period, brands association, among others.
What is clear is, if the company sponsors, it will want to have some return. In other words, companies want to find channels that take their message to their consumers so they can buy their products.
If a Nordic athlete has a good project that generates value for the brand, the company can analyze its project and know if it will bring results. The athlete is a communication channel and, as such, the interest is to create a partnership bond that favors both parties in mutual aid. The long distance skier needs to spread messages and be heard, he needs to be more than a user, but an influencer of people. And the more people, the better. If that reaches out to social medias and go to the press, the athlete will have a good chance of getting a sponsorship.
The athlete needs to have empathy for the products and mission of the company. It is essential that he knows the brand to which he is presenting his project and to make this communication as assertive as possible.
We all know that the life of an athlete is quite difficult: training, studies, work, family and in many cases training and competition expenses go out of their own pocket. The athlete needs specialized training, skis, waxes, boots, poles, clothes, sports nutrition, which makes Nordic skiing practice quite expensive, not to mention transport, lodging and entries for the races.
And while you may not have a good sponsorship, the best thing to do is to go after one, but how?
- Prepare your resume: show past results, placements, interviews for magazines, newspapers, television, videos and photos. An amateur athlete may not yet have many impressive results, but having a well-rounded resume shows that you are an athlete and that the sport is taken seriously by you.
- Look for companies with your profile: look for companies engaged in sports or involved with long distance skiing and sponsor projects similar to yours.
- Prepare a project: show how the company will win by sponsoring you. It is imperative to have a serious presentation, well done, easy, clear and quick to read.
- Calendar: List the events you plan to attend, the size of the event, the forms that the event will pass in the media, and place yourself at the sponsor's disposal for the company's own events.
- Dedication to sport: something that draws the attention of sponsors is performance in competitions, but a focused and determined athlete in training also attracts the attention of possible supporters.
- Personal image: It is important to watch over your personal image. Try to show professionalism and ethics on and off the tracks.
- Public: be loved by the public and keep your social medias always up to date.
- Commitment: respect the company and follow the established agreements.
- Partnerships: big contracts are important, but partnerships are simpler for the company to get products and services than money.
After getting a sponsorship, it's time to work for this partnership with ethics and dedication. The association of your image with that of your sponsor will be great and therefore, the actions you take in your day to day life can make the partnership stronger and stronger.
Enjoy the start of the training season to get your sponsorship project up to date and find support for next winter's races.
Good luck and stay tuned for my next article.