7 Keys to Getting Sponsored Skateboarding
Tips and Advice for Getting Sponsored
Many skateboarders dream of getting sponsored and paid to skate. Imagine getting free product and gear to use, traveling around the globe, skating all the best skateparks and ultimately getting paid to do what you love.
That's what I like to call living the skatelife.
There's much more to getting sponsored than just skateboarding though. Professional skateboarder, Jamie Thomas, once said that skateboarding is only 40% of it all. Having a good attitude, being positive and motivated takes up the other 60%. In other words, this means more to sponsors than the actual talent you have.
In this article, you're going to learn what it really takes to get sponsored.
7 Key Components to Getting Sponsored as a Skateboarder
It took several sponsor-me videos before I ever got sponsored, but once it happened, that's when skateboarding really started paying off for me.
During that time up until now, I've learned a lot about sponsorships and how to get one. If I would have had someone tell me about this when I started looking for sponsors, it would have happened much sooner than it did.
If you put these keys to work in your skateboarding, you can succeed and find a way to turn your passion into profits. Where there's a will, there's a way.
To help you get sponsored, here are seven key components to getting sponsored for skateboarding:
1. Passion for Skateboarding
It doesn't matter what career you choose in life; the most important thing you can do is to love what you do.
When you just love skateboarding and have fun doing it, you won’t care whether or not you get sponsored.
And the weird thing is, that's what sponsors find attractive.
They want to see you enjoying yourself, instead of trying too hard to get sponsored. The difference shows up in your skating.
Skateboarding was meant to be fun, keep it that way.
Of course, getting sponsored will be in the back of your mind; just don't push so hard to make it happen.
Go with the flow and getting sponsored will happen if it was meant to. If it doesn't happen, keep your eyes open, because there are other doors always waiting to be opened.
2. Style Matters in Skateboarding
When looking for new team riders, sponsors are looking for someone who stands out with their style and originality.
"It's not who can kickflip the most stairs, it's all about style." - Gailea Momolu
As cliché as this sounds, be yourself.
Because there's no one in the world like you, there's no competition and no comparison. Let your personality shine. Forget what others are doing, and just do you.
Be a one in a million.
3. Attitude of a Winner
If you watched the finale of Slap's 2012 "One In A Million" contest, you would know that there was no winner chosen that year.
The reason for this decision was because of the poor attitudes the skaters were having towards the end of the show. Because attitudes are contagious, the negativity spread throughout the entire crew, and nobody got sponsored.
Jamie Thomas was on the last episode, and he was telling the cameras that there's so much more to sponsorship than just skateboarding.
What he said mattered more than talent is having a good attitude, being positive and motivated to skate.
4. Promote Yourself & Get Noticed
Think of yourself as a product.
For anyone to buy your product, they have to know about it first. Your duty is to get yourself out there and display your skills.
Paul Rodriguez (aka. P-Rod) has said that your best chances of getting sponsored is by entering contests, showing up to demos, making friends in the skate industry - doing everything you can to get yourself out there.
- Go to all the local skateboard competitions, events, and parties.
- Make your presence known within your local skate scene and online.
- Sign up on Myspace.com, Facebook.com, Loopd.com & theBerrics.com
- Upload your videos and skate pictures to these social media sites.
The more exposure, the better, and the more people are talking about you and your skating, the better chance you have for getting sponsored.
5. Making a Killer Sponsor-Me Video
Make your first impression a good one.
How you film and edit your sponsor me video could play a big part in whether or not your video gets watched. Videos with shaking footage or cheesy editing will not give the sponsor a good first impression.
How To Film & Edit a Killer Skate Video
- Film in a variety of spots and be creative with your tricks.
- Edit only your best tricks together and keep it about 2 minutes in length.
- Keep the transitions simple and use them sparingly
- Choose your music with caution, or don't use any at all
When you're all done with your video, post it online. Then send an email to your choice of sponsor with a link to your sponsor-me video.
Use this format for sending an email:
- Here's who I am & what I can do
- Here's how I can help you
- Here's what I'd like to happen
First tell them who you are, where you're from, how old you are, etc.
Then give them several ways you can help them if they sponsor you. You have to be of value for them to even consider sponsoring you.
It's not what can you get; it's what can you give.
How can you help?
For example, you could help them by filming and editing trick tip videos that drive traffic to their website. Or maybe you've won several contests already, and so you could help them get their brand some recognition that way.
After that, tell them what you would like to happen (e.g., get sponsored).
Go on to telling them what your goals, plans, and dreams are with your life. Share with them your vision for what you would like to see happen.
6. Network & Make Connections
One of the most important keys to getting sponsored is having the right friends.
You should get in contact the team manager and get to know him or her. If you know someone who knows them ask to be introduced. It would also be a good idea to make friends with the guys on the team.
When you send in a sponsor me video it could be these guys watching and making the decision whether or not to have you on the team.
It would do you good to make as many connections with people inside and out of the skate industry. Be friendly and be of value.
7. Constant Improvement
Sponsors want to see you always improving when you're skating.
Every day you skate you should make a decision and work to get better at skateboarding. If you aren't constantly showing improvement, then you soon become irrelevant.
You are going to have to push the limits to reach new levels in your skate career.
Stay relevant by constantly improving your skills, including your social skills, marketing skills, skating skills, and your filming & editing skills.
Last Minute Skate Tips
- Film and edit lots of videos to upload to Youtube
- Get to know people in the skate industry
- Be humble and have a good attitude
- Let your style and personality shine to differentiate yourself
- Be consistent and progressive when skating
Get Sponsored & Paid to Skate
If you can find a way to turn your passion into profits, it will bring much more enjoyment to what you do.
You have to be a go-getter, enter contests, send videos, show up at demos, get out there, meet people in the industry, and get noticed to get sponsored.
Get Your Skateboard Tricks Dialed
Of course, you also have to practice and get your tricks dialed too.
By playing games of S-K-A-T-E, you can learn new tricks and improve your consistency with landing your tricks. And when you skate with guys who can beat you, you get better.
Work on style and consistency, and you'll do fine as a skater.
Film as Often as Possible
Get comfortable under pressure.
Film as often as you can so that you're comfortable with being filmed. It might take a while to get used to, but try to forget the camera is even there.
Remember to have fun and be yourself.
And for the last thing...
Surround Yourself With Skaters Who Are Better Than You
You learn so much more skating with someone better than you.
Skate with skateboarders who have the same passion for skateboarding as you do. Be aware of the skaters who don't have the same goals as you, because they can drain you of your energy or take you off track if you're not careful.
Surround yourself with the right people and grow to become the best.
© 2009 Billy