You Don’t Have to Be Instagram Famous to Score Sponsorships
Don’t have 50,000 followers on Instagram? You might think your chances of a landing a sponsorship deal will never happen, but not to worry. There are other ways to get companies to recognize why they should invest in you. Here are some tips for you on your quest to score a sponsorship.
First and foremost, your passion needs to be evident.
And I’m not just talking about your passion to get recognized. I mean a true, committed dedication to cars. This means hitting up meets both big and small, staying in the know about relevant news, and genuinely loving anything to do with cars. Most of the companies you reach out to are filled with real enthusiasts who have spent years racing, innovating, and developing products to better the automotive industry. If your passion isn’t real, they will see right through it. Describe yourself, your story, your demographics.
Find the right person to contact.
You don’t want to start emailing the sales department about why you are the perfect fit for a sponsorship deal. Telephone calls can sometimes be best, because you have the chance to have a real conversation, not just a bunch of emails back and fourth that get lost in translation. If not, make sure you are emailing the right person. And use spell check!
Nothing Comes Free…You have to be willing to dedicate yourself to the brand.
Companies don’t give out free or discounted parts for fun. They’re interested in the marketing and exposure that can come from you representing their brand with your car. So don’t be one of those people who accepts discounts and doesn’t give credit where credit is due. When communicating with companies for sponsorships, make sure you know what they are looking to get back from you. Maybe its just a windshield banner, or maybe its social media posts. Maybe they will require you to go to several track days and really represent their brand on the strip. Don’t be afraid to let them know what you’re willing to do as well. It shows that you’re serious about representing them if you offer your availability for exposure and events. If you’re only willing to throw a sticker on your ride, chances are they may be less inclined to help you out. Include how YOU will benefit THEM.
Don’t give up after the first rejection.
Or the first unanswered email. At the end of the day, there are tons of people out there looking for sponsorships. Sometimes companies won’t even be offering them, but you won’t know until you find out. If you really are dedicated, then you shouldn’t stop after the first rejection. That being said, make sure you are not sending the same generic email to each company. It’s obvious if they are all filled with blanket statements that don’t really display why THAT brand is the one for you. Create a list, and decide who could really be a potential sponsor so you don’t become that person reaching out to every brand on the market.
Understand what a sponsorship means.
Not all sponsorships are the same. Sometimes you get lucky and get totally free parts, but that’s not usually the case. Maybe its a small discount, or maybe a large one. But if you’re going to commit to representing a brand, make sure you know what you’re getting into. Company A may offer a sponsorship if you promote their brand 24/7, but may turn around and only offer you a 10% discount on their already expensive products. Make sure you communicate about what your “sponsorship” really means.
Be Brief, Be Awesome, and then Be Gone
Don’t make this take up their whole day. Ask for what you are looking for, describe why you would be a good fit, but don’t make them spend the whole day reading a 4 page essay with references. Why are you different than the others? Make yourself stand out, but do it briefly.