Professional sports, in general, is a fickle game. Success in the realm of athleticism doesn’t just require skills. In the modern-day, sponsorship is critical for up-and-coming players. Disc golf in particular is gaining popularity worldwide. As such, organizations or businesses are open to sponsoring exceptional disc golfers. Amateurs may wonder how to get sponsored in disc golf. Well, here’s a step-by-step guide.
What is Disc Golf Sponsorship?
Sponsors support players in various aspects of their professional careers, mostly financially. What do sponsors get in return? If the player wins tournaments and gets renowned, the sponsor also gains recognition by association to the player.
In this relationship, there is a win-win aspect for the two parties. The sponsor helps the player financially, although non-financial benefits are possible. Examples of non-financial benefits include access to premium disc golf courses, exposure, and a reputation within the disc golf community. And the player helps the sponsors by growing its exposure as its ambassador.
How to Get Sponsored in Disc Golf
Perform Better than Everyone Else
To get sponsorship, players have to realize that they have to be out there. They have to stand out, gain tons of exposure, and be active in the disc golf community. In my opinion, the major key to get noticed is performance. But other factors play, of course, but they are not as effective as impeccable performance.
If a player performs better than anyone else, he gets more renown and recognition. If he keeps winning and maintaining the top, he builds a name for himself. And the sponsors will notice.
Show Passion by Playing a Lot
Having the best skills in the world doesn’t mean anything if the skills are not shown. An important aspect of getting noticed is being noticed and exposed. The more people that can see the skills of a player, the bigger and better reputation he builds for himself.
Players have to climb leaderboards for people to remember them. And when people grow to like them, sponsors will see the benefit of sponsoring those players. Sponsors notice what the people notice.
When it comes to getting noticed professionally, there’s no better environment than a high-stakes tournament. Sponsors want ambassadors to the sport and the company. They want to sponsor players who have a passion for the sport and its community.
The passion for the sport is next to skill level. Sponsoring companies want exposure and recognition. That is why they will sponsor someone who’s always at the biggest games.
Fulfill the Minimum Requirements
There are minimum requirements to get sponsors. These requirements are not always true to all sponsorship deals, but they generally are. These requirements are:
- Play and win commendable places in competitions
- Have an active social media presence
- Promote the sport with a deep passion
- Spread the game
- Be active in the community
In general, sponsoring companies want their brand associated with a positive player who the people like. They want ambassadors to whom the people can relate.
As friendly as a player’s image is, that kind of friendliness doesn’t apply to sponsoring companies. As a player, I wouldn’t get a sponsorship by texting or tagging sponsors on social media. I wouldn’t earn their favor by begging for sponsorship.
Disc golf companies are very professional. They expect professionalism in return. Instead of texting potential sponsors and begging for sponsorship, try this method instead:
Set Up a Meeting
Setting up a meeting displays the business nature of sponsorship. It communicates the degree of seriousness the player puts into representing the brand. If the player is somewhat close to the owners or marketing heads of the sponsoring company, taking them out to lunch may still be appropriate.
Sponsors don’t want their names associated with disagreeable players. Whoever the people favor, the sponsors pursue. The primary benefit a sponsoring company gets out of a sponsorship relationship with a player is brand recognition and better marketing. If the player they are closely associated with is a terrible person, their name is dragged down along with that player.
Specific Sponsorships Players Can Pursue
The most well-known sponsoring companies are disc golf manufacturers. These are Innova, Dynamic Discs, Discraft, Infinite Disc, and more. I will now explain the different criteria these companies use when sponsoring players.
Innova is perhaps the most popular disc golf company. It is universally trusted with its consistent innovation and support to the community. They sponsor a lot of players. These players become part of Team Innova. To be part of the team, hopeful players have to reach out to Innova by completing a required form.
Dynamic Discs is very liberal in giving out sponsorship. The company doesn’t just require players to be the best of the best. Any player who makes passionate contributions to the disc golf community has a chance of earning a sponsorship with the company.
Discraft sponsorship is all about promoting the sport. Their sponsorship options focus on Tournament, Club, and Pro Player sponsorship. This means that they prefer highly skilled players.
A player can apply to be part of Team Infinite by completing their application form. The requirements for sponsorship include participating in at least 12 disc golf events annually, an updated Infinite Profile, and interacting with their social media pages.
Earning sponsorship takes hard work. Players have to put in the work if they want the benefits. To put it simply, immersing oneself in the sport and doing everything for it is how to get sponsored in disc golf. But of course, some sponsoring companies like their ambassadors to do a little something extra for the brand they represent.