Tuesday 18 November 2008

5 reasons why sporters really don't need a sports agent

  1. They take a larger % of earnings in comparison to the actual work and benefit they deliver to the sporter and they lock you into long contract.
  2. The only tasks they really do is use their network and relationships and check contracts, which a lawyer could do and a network is something the sporter him/herself can build.
  3. They take the control in terms of time and attention away from the sporter, the sporter becomes a puppet and loses control of their agenda and sporters need to decide their own agenda.
  4. They do not have the sporters long term best interests at heart, they focus on what will deliver the most return in the shortest space of time and therefore the largest cut.
  5. They do not help the sporter to create a network around them, therefore once the agent is gone the network and relationships are gone too.

Sporters need to cut out the middle man and start building their own network of relationships, being a sporter is a business, in business, relationships matter, and creating this network will stand the sporter in good sted for when they retire from competitive sports. Start building your network for free on http://www.e-sporters.com.

Wednesday 5 November 2008

GB athletes hit by funding cuts - support for winners only

20% of top athletes in the UK have just lost their funding to help them achieve their sporting goals. Now only 33 athletes in the UK recieve lottery funding.

Funding of athletes (sporters) can hardly be described as huge sums of money:
  • top level of funding of £25,383 per year

  • 2nd tier funding £19,000 per year

  • 3rd tier of funding which is £12,600 per year
But enough to ensure that the top sporters can enter international events and climb the international rankings even further. It is a blow when this is taken away.

The selection was made on those athletes who are more likely to deliver success in the world championships and then the London2012 games. Effectively only supporting those sporters who are guaranteed success. Like the saying goes "you need money to make money", "you only get support if you are good enough", which leaves the less well off and the current lower achievers out in the dark, it does not then take into consideration the potential achievements of those current lower achievers ie. upcoming talent. If talent then goes without funding and support, this group will find it more difficult to make it to the top, therefore this short term strategy of only backing the sure winners is only going to pay divends in the short term not the long term.

For those athletes that do not fall into the top 3 tiers they have to find other means of funding their sporting ambitions and goals - this is why sponsors and a support network are so important to these sporters.

www.e-sporters.com offers sporters the opportunity to form virtual multidisciplinary teams of individual sporters, and promote themselves to potential sponsors. Forming virtual multicisciplinary teams can make individual sporters more attractive to potential sponsors. It is free to register, create your team and invite your team members. Sponsors can also register for free and check out the teams who are promoting themselves.

Tuesday 4 November 2008

Finding sponsorship - sporters resources

Finding sponsorship can be quite daunting for sporters who do not have a support network to help them find sponsors - but there are many resouces which can help. Here you will find some basic do's and dont's when approaching sponsors in the first place, maintaining the relationship requires other skills.

The main thing about sponsorship is to remember it should be a win-win for both parties. So understanding what both sides what to get out of the relationship, discussing fair compromises and forging an agreement around this premis will result in successful long term relationships for both parties. Sponsorship agreements entered into for hope of a quick return are doomed for failure.

Don't kid yourself, securing a sponsorship deal will take a lot of work, but their are tools and websites which can help you in this endevour.

Do's When approaching potential sponsors…..
Do your homework, try to pick companies that are relevant to you and your sport
Avoid approaching companies from the same industry sector as any existing sponsors you may have
View all social and formal gatherings as potential networking opportunities
Make use of all potential contacts – friends, relatives, friends of friends, promote yourself on business network websites like http://www.e-sporters.com and http://www.linkedin.com
Most companies receive many sponsorship requests so try to make sure your letter/email stands out from the others, this requires personalizing the message as much as possible, this requires research
If you are offered the chance to meet in person, make sure you are fully prepared. Plan meticulously
Take a carefully prepared presentation with you to any meetings. This shows initiative and professionalism
Always carry business cards with you. It will make you look professional
Take time to determine exactly what it is you can offer a sponsor
Be confident. Remember that you have much to offer a sponsor. Sponsorship is not a one-way relationship
Prepare an annual budget, calculating all your outgoings. This will help you to determine the level of support you should ask for and to clarify the areas in which you need the most help
Check with your National Governing Body before committing to display sponsor branding on your kit. Rules vary from sport to sport and event to event
Try to develop a relationship with your local paper. Building your profile locally will put you in the ‘shop window’ for local businesses. Press coverage also gives you the opportunity to actively promote your sponsor
Don’t be afraid to ask. Many companies will be keen to help – they just won’t know how!

Dont's When approaching potential sponsors……
Don’t view sponsorship support as cash alone – there are many ways that a sponsor can help you
Don’t ask small companies for a large amount of cash – they will most likely say no, be realistic
When writing to potential sponsors, do not state how much money or product you want – leave that for the face-to-face meeting
Don’t over promise. Make sure you can deliver on your sponsor commitments
Don’t commit to anything that you think may cause conflict with your sport’s Governing Body or its sponsors. Check first with your lifestyle adviser or NGB

This site provides more detailed information: http://sponsorship.uksport.gov.uk/

Register for free on http://www.e-sporters.com - create your sporters profile, with your YouTube promo video, enter your experience, achievements, photos and what you are looking for and check the box "looking for sponsor".