How to Get Sponsored (Not Sponcered)

Words by David Rajewski

We love all you guys, seriously. You are the future of the sport. But we won't listen to your incessant pleas for free stuff. Sponsorship is a two way street that has to help both the company and the rider. Let's grow the sport together.

If you want to be sponsored, you have to be professional, different, and impressive. Kookiness and lack of experience shows immediately. Here are some suggestions on how not to be considered a kook and take your skating to the next level.

Orangatang Knows Branding

1) Great is only a starting point.

By considering great as a starting point, riders not only set the bar high, but they also push it higher. If you think you are great, shoot for better. If your media is great, shoot for better. Never settle for the status quo or "good enough". If you do, consider yourself already falling behind. Being an amazing skater means reaching out from the masses of the great skaters. To do this, you have to push yourself (safely of course) and think of new ways to do things. You have to differentiate.

Alex Blunt Slide

Alex Blunt Slide

The best skaters in the world know how to set themselves apart and do it every day. Think Liam Morgan and his attitude and style; Adam Colton for his personality and insane steeze; Kevin Reimer with Aera Trucks and These wheels; Kyle Chin for his videos and scene support. These are the kinds of guys that go down in longboarding history. How are you going to present yourself?

2) You are a brand.

Think of yourself, your YouTube channel, Facebook page, etc all as a brand. People are going to view that brand and make judgments. Make sure those judgments are positive. Look to the leading brands such as Loaded, Caliber, and Landyachtz for inspiration in pictures, videos, etc. Jump yourself apart from the norm.

Represent Stoked Skateboards!

Awesome Stoked Skateboards Shirt. Represent!

3) Look for needs.

What do you think is the biggest problem in longboarding? What can you do today, be it big or small, to contribute to a solution? Think about it and take action.

4) What do you do well?

Take time to think about what you are particularly good at and use that to your advantage. Are you funny? Do you offer exceptional photography skills? Do you have some kind of sweet new trick? Are you creative in your video story lines? Think about how you can use your strengths to set yourself apart from the masses.

Racing is only one aspect of the sport.

Racing is only one aspect of the sport.

5) Respect those who help you.

If sponsors, parents, friends, family, etc helped you in any some small way (or big way), show them respect. Don't quit a team without first discussing any problems over the phone or in person. Communication is key and can mean the difference between success and leaving people confused and angered.

No matter what happens, try to keep in touch and remain friends with any professional you have interacted with. You never know when someone can help you down the road. Remember, we are all in this together.

6) Contribute to the community.

There is no such thing as a free lunch. Or free set of wheels. In order to become sponsored, you have to help grow the community and the sport. Create awesome skate sessions in your area with your friends and encourage those new to the sport to come out. Make sure longboarding is known and respected in your community. Check out our articles on how to talk to cops so you stay out of trouble.

Few contribute to the community as much as Loaded Boards and Orangatang

Loaded Boards and Orangatang

7) Present what you do in a concise and quick email.

Once you get what you do in order, you have to do a great job presenting it. Stoked gets LOTS of requests, so how is yours going to stand out? Have a catchy subject line and introduction. Keep it short and sweet, we don't need to know everything about you. Quick highlights work best. Think of your email as a resume. Hit on key points and give us the chance to ask you for more information. No one wants to read masses of text vomit, so write better!

Wrapping Up

Keep up the stoke and stay safe. You all have more potential than you realize and all it takes is a little know how and elbow grease to take yourself from good to great. When you do send out that sponsor letter, for the love of skatan, don't spell sponsored wrong.

Special thanks to Loaded Boards and Orangatang Wheels for their awesome photos. See more of their photos on their Flickr.

Anything we missed? Any other important things to include? Let us know: contact page or email us here.

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