Times have changed in the world of snowboarding. Long gone are the days where only a select few can throw down the gnarliest tricks in the game. Nowadays, every new kid coming up the ranks in the snowboard world can do the exact same trick as the next. So, as Bill Nye would say, "consider the following:"
Bill Nye The Science Guy, 1993
Why should a company invest their money in you?
There are 3 things you must consider before getting sponsored:
- Edits Of Your Riding
1) How Good Is Your Riding?
This may not be the most crucial of the three, but it's important that you start here.
“Are you a good rider?” Is an okay question to ask yourself, but it’s not great, because everyone has their own perceptions of what good really is. Instead, ask yourself, “are people going to watch me?” If you’re just starting to get 3 inches of air off groomer side-hits, no one but mom is going to watch you. But everyone is there at some point, and if that’s where you’re at, practice.
While some pros appear to be born and bred to snowboard, that generally isn't the case. The truth is, 'being good' takes time and effort. You know, hard work? It’s ultimately up to you to make the decision to push yourself to become a better rider. Get out on the hill as much as you can, push yourself every day, and you will see improvements.
Oh, and another thing – fall. I fall every day when I ride, because I know that if I’m not falling, I’m not pushing myself hard enough. So get out there, and eat sh*t mother trucker!
Rider: Aimee Fuller | Photographer: Matt Georges
How Do I Know If People Will Watch Me?
While it isn't always 100% necessary, it's probably a good idea to strive for the following before thinking about sponsorship.
- You can confidently hit Large (L) and Extra Large (XL) features.. and land them
- Spin both ways and come out clean.
- Get inverted... again, landing is a must.
- Have a roster of grabs that you can add to each trick for steaze points.
Almost the only way to get sponsored in this day and age is by making edits, so you’re going to have to as well.
This could mean making edits on your home mountain, hitting the rails at your old elementary school, or venturing out into the backcountry to make a sick pow edit. Whatever you choose to do, the footage of yourself is ultimately going to be the meat that gets you sponsored.
If you don't have a camera, make friends with someone who has a camera, invest in a GoPro, or use your iPhone. If you want the sponsorship bad, you'll find a way to get footage. Just film some dope ass sh*t yo! Keep in mind, quality is important too. Like... it's really important. Video knowledge and editing can turn your straight-air into an artsy steazy breezy Cover Girl masterpiece. For that reason, investing in quality equipment is totally worth it if it helps you get that sponsorship. Quality doesn't just come from editing, however; you need quality material too.
Make sure they know who you are after watching your video, not just what you can do. If you're going for a sponsorship at a local pizza shop, then you could probably get away with a video loaded with poorly edited tricks and a shot of you chowing down on their Friday night special. But if you're going to the top dogs out there, you're going to need a little more. Show your personality, demonstrate your editing skills, express your dedication. Give them substance that tells them about you. They will not only be sponsoring your riding; they are going to sponsor the human being who can best represent their brand. And if all you are is a board and bindings twirling around, you're not going to get exactly what you're after.
Alright, kid. You’re a decent rider, you got some DAF (dope-ass-footage) with your homies; time for free trip to Alaska, right? Nah...
3) Publicize Yourself
Quite often, sponsoring you with gear can be the cheapest and easiest way to get a company’s name out to the public. When people see you in a dope edit wearing a certain brands gear, they want to get the same gear that you’re swaggin’. So when are people going to see you riding?
Rear Window, 1954
Understand that getting sponsored is a two-way street. No company is going to swag you out just for living your life; this isn’t the Kardashians. You need to be as valuable to the company as their brand new 2018 board is to you, and your value is going to be in the form of publicity.
Pick a site, vimeo.com for example, and post your edits. From there, you can share your edits to all of your social media accounts, which will be used as outlets to collect views all in one place. This way you have a clear and tangible reach for your videos. Your social media, Instagram; Facebook; Twitter; etc. can also be great avenues to tell the world who you are and what you are about, which will help you develop your brand.
Newschoolers.com is another site where you can create an account and post your edits to a community of people just like you.
Once you get your first few clips in a video, then you have some leveraging power to talk with companies and they finally have a reason to hook you up. Better yet, if you can prove to a company that you have a fan base online, they're going to be way more likely to sponsor you.
Are You Ready Kiddo?
Ask yourself the questions displayed in the beautiful flowchart below:
Once you’ve considered all of the above, find a brand that you relate to, and go after that sponsorship. A sponsorship can be an exciting and life-changing event, so be professional about it, and treat it as a job application. Don't make demands, and be persuasive as to how you can be of value to the company. If you can clearly state to your reader what you can do for them, you're well on your way to a nice crunchy sponsorship.
Want A Sponsorship With Snowboard Addiction?
Check out our sponsorship page to see if you have what it takes to shred for Snowboard Addiction.
Our Goal Is To Improve Your Riding