We all want to be sponsored for romping around in the woods, and who wouldn’t? A company giving you equipment or paying you to pursue your passions while exploring your heart out – it’s an appealing thought. However, in today’s day and age, it can be difficult to gain sponsorship. With so many talented bikers, climbers and skiers, getting the attention of a company takes extra work. Luckily these four easy steps can help you.
Step one: Have a unique approach to your sport.
Getting sponsored is all about setting yourself apart from the competition. Nothing says “sponsor me” more than actually standing out from the crowd. Just because you pull hard on plastic or ski all the double blacks off of Pierre’s Knob doesn’t mean sponsors will come running. However, if you climb 5.10 while also freestyle rapping about the struggles in Belarus, companies will take notice. Or, for the skiing example, get to the point to where you can ski all the double blacks off of Pierre’s Knob wearing only Roxy booty shorts. I’m pretty sure no one has done that, and by doing so you will be unique and set yourself apart from the competition. It’s also a confident assumption that no one has done it in Lycra with a boombox strapped to their chest. Become that person and you will be unique enough to catch corporate attention.
Step two: Hire a personal photographer.
Being dressed to the nines in neon, zebra print Lycra while scumming your way up V1s in the Gallatin means nothing if there isn’t someone to document it. By hiring a professional, personal photographer you can be assured that a shot that will lead you to stardom will not be missed. Professional photographers such as North Face’s Jimmy Chin and Renan Ozturk will definitely be able to keep up with your extreme, sponsor-able lifestyle. Nothing says “look at me, I’m unique and important” like running around in the woods with a mullet while someone else is frantically chasing after you with a Go-Pro.
Step three: Create the ultimate hashtag.
Social media is the way to sponsorship nowadays. If you can snap it, you can get the focus of big-name companies. By having unique, amazing hashtags like #sickiegnargnar (already taken by the way, get your own hashtag), you are sure to draw some attention. Be sure to also advertise yourself from other hashtags besides your own, uniquely awesome hashtag. Adding at least 70-80 hashtags of various outdoor companies to your photo (tagging them is also important) there is, without a doubt, someone who will notice you. Keep in mind that your original hashtag has to express raw, epic adventure. Some possibilities include: #lycraclimbingv1rad, #handjampeanutbuttersandwich, #watchmeshredittopartytown, and #shortropingisthenewalpinism.
Step four: Grovel.
The reality of sponsorship lies within this step. You need to beg for it. Get in a car, drive to Salt Lake City to the Petzl or Black Diamond headquarters, get on your knees and beg for sponsorships. Kissing shoes helps a lot. Recognize that if you are not a unique, extreme athlete the quickest way to become one is to shave your head into a Mohawk, and stand in front of the CEO of the company. If you cry, they are more likely to sponsor you.
Good luck, go out there and uniquely hashtag your adventures. Get sponsored and get shredding.