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Author Topic:   Sponsors ?
Dirt Forum Champ
Total posts: 796
posted April 04, 2005 12:25 PM  
Any of you guys, got any real world advice for a young racing team, seeking sponsorship?

I know some of you guys have some sponsors, care to share your expierences, then in's & out's so to speak?

Thought about buying a book or two on the subject, but thats not real world stuff most times.

Anyway, any thoughts would be appreciated.

Thanks, Krom.

Dirt Freak

Total posts: 334
posted April 04, 2005 12:37 PM  
I know a few people that setup a deal where the sponsor pays for oil, or fuel, or pit passes, or whatever you can think of on a per race basis. You don't race, they don't pay. If you race, you go by their business and they cut you a check for expenses and you even get to chat with them about how the weekend went. Takes a little flexibility during the week, but seems to work pretty well.

Dirt Forum Champ
Total posts: 874
posted April 04, 2005 12:56 PM  
Honestly, the type of sponsorship DLUNA talked about is the best. Fuel, Oil, Car washes... Even a food place that'll give you X amount towards meals a month. If you total it up you'd be suprised at how much you actually save. My parts supplier allows me to hold a revolving account, and I pay them monthly, weekly, sometimes when I have extra cash. It's a lot easier and they are very flexible. Not a lot of places will do this with you, but when they do I will always put them on my car no matter what. I was considering hitting up the local napa for 10 cases of 20w-50 and some Napa Racing Filters, Napa Air Filters, gear oil.
Car Washes are great to have as sponsors
Some have the type that accepts credit cards, or cards that have X amount of wash credit. They'll just give you a card that allows you infinite time, or X amount of time a month. I can sometimes spend an hour at the car wash with the car, so you figure 20 bux (if your not cheating the machines) twice a week, for 20 weeks is quite a bit. Best thing you can do is call and ask, but do NOT use the word Sponsor, use Marketing Partner, or Marketing Plan. Once they get to looking at the benefits of sponsoring a race car (we are loyal to sponsors on anyones car, no matter who), they'll think twice about saying (Sorry we don't do that) which is an often thing a lot of people hear.

Good Luck

Dirt Freak

Total posts: 402
posted April 04, 2005 01:34 PM  
Our sponsor, Pisces Pet's out of Columbia (shameless plug lol) Pay's for our tires, fuel, pit passes for three, and paid for the new body on our modified. We have a standing agreement that if the team(leapinlizard Racing) were not able to race a percentage of shows than that money would get credited back to the advertiser. or use for Radio broadcasting or other things outside of racing. We may have to run two or three nights every weekend to make up for weather called event's but Pisces Pet's still pay's for it. We don't do things on the track to satisfy our agreement's...I.E. No. of shows, Wins and such. For we just can't promise that and fulfill our end. Instead we do all their advertising and marketing for them so Pisces Pet's doesn't have to. He is busy running a small biusiness and it helps when he doesn't have to deal with it. We just take a chunk off what's left. The more we work to save for Pisces Pet's in advertising per dollar he makes in increased revenue the higher our percentage of marketing(racing money)will be. This extra money goes into upgrades for the car and we only have to pay for repairs out of our team pocket. So we don't charge per show or lap or for space on the car. Try thinking out side the box. What kind of service can you provide for that company (a detailed tailered contract) to help them make more money?

You don't pay for racing, They don't feel like thier handing out cash and not ever seeing you till next year.

Dirt Maniac

Total posts: 145
posted April 04, 2005 01:50 PM  
You need to offer some type of marketing plan. The basic marketing tool you have is the race car. Sponsor logos are important but not the only thing. You should consider including one or two appearances with the car and driver at the place of business. For instance this season, one of my sponsors is having an employee outing at the race track. We will bring the car early, hand out some items to the kids, and help barbeque and such. I also include a couple of one race pit passes to the sponsors (one even requested four and I said of course). If you're going to ask for cash, make sure you take a portion of that cash (maybe $100 for every $1000) for marketing materials, such as hero cards and t-shirts. Give them away at the track to the folks in the grandstands. When the sponsor sees you working hard for their money, they'll more than likely want to continue supporting you.
One last thing . . . if you want to just start looking for sponsors, I suggest spending a little money for a dozen t-shirts with your racing information and any current sponsors on them. Wearing them and even handing one to a potential sponsor shows him/her that you are serious and will represent them well. If your shooting for only $100-300 per sponsor, then spending money might not be feasible. Be creative and always have a sponsorship proposal handy with lots of racing pictures.

[This message has been edited by mdsteacher (edited April 04, 2005).]

Dirt Forum Champ
Total posts: 796
posted April 04, 2005 02:51 PM  
This is only our second year in Mods. I come from another form of racing, inwhich i was a full ride factory driver. Everything was free pretty much.

That kind of racing was all performance based, this stuff seems to be more of a marketing based type stuff. So i have to learn how to deal with it.

Thanks for all the info so far, its appreciated.

Whats the best way for guys to get going ?, we currently have no sponsors period. Thought about having some cards made up with a pic of the car etc, then some crew shirts, and action shirts and kinda go from there.

Dirt Newbie

Total posts: 2
posted April 05, 2005 12:02 PM  

I have to agree with the advice that "mdsteacher" gave. A sponsorship proposal is a must. Even if your racing experience in this class is minimal, include your information and accomplishments from your past racing experience. The proposal will show the potential sponsor that you have professionalism and are focused.

Hero Cards are also excellent. There is a supplier in our area that charges $45 for 100 cards. Put a decent pic of the car, driver and crew on the front, a short driver bio on the back, and also list all car sponsors on the back. In our area, there are at least 3 pre-race season car shows at local shopping malls. Get the car done early and get it out where people can see you and the car and hand out the cards. Focus on the kids. Give a small child an autographed picture, and you are his hero for life. That child has a parent, and that parent is going to bring that child to the races every week, and every week that child is going to be watching you, and going down to the novalty stand to have his/her mom or dad buy a picture of you, and it just starts snow-balling from there.

There was a guy at the track that we race at... On the side of his car it said in great big letters, "SPONSOR THIS CAR FOR A DOLLAR PER LAP". He had cheep t-shirts mad up that said "I sponsored "Drivers Name". Every person who sponsored him for 10 laps ($10) got a T-Shirt. I believe he made over $4,000 last season. And he is doing the same thing this year. "See attached Pic". It seems like a goofy gimmick, but it works for him. And the kids love him.

Driver and car appearances are also a big help. Especially if you are trying to land a car dealership for a sponsor. I had a Ford dealer for a sponsor once. The dealer set up an open house, advertising big sales for that day, and I pulled together a dozen racers and myself to be on site with our race cars. Race fans ALWAYS flock to race cars, and the dealer was thrilled by the turnout of people to the open house. The open house and race car show is now an annual event at this dealership.

Also, while money is great, don't be afraid to barter too. I had a beverage center sponsor that gave me a case of soda for us to consume at the track each race, as well as a case of beer for after the races. It doesn't seem like alot, but if you race a couple nights a week for a season, add up the cost of 40 cases of beer and soda.

Especially starting out... be willing to accept some small sponsorships. Treat the sponsor good, and if you have a good season and get noticed, go back to them the next year and ask for a little more.

Best of luck to you.

Danny Wood
VanWert/Wood Motorsports
Mechanicville, New York
#15 - 2003 1/2 Hoffman
#51 - 2001 Dirtworks

[This message has been edited by SidewaysInNY (edited April 05, 2005).]

unregistered Total posts: 2
posted April 05, 2005 02:33 PM           send a private message to SidewaysInNY   Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/QuoteBBBBBB
Everyone is giving very good advice. I had recieved 3-9000 in cash in the past for a season. Every one of my sponsors bought my fuel and a case of oil, whenever I needed it. That way as mentioned above I saw them every 3 weeks and kept in touch etc.

The one thing I will add is that here in Iowa everyone seems to think their car doesnt look like a race car without sponsors all over it. I am sure Midwest, and Jr motorsports love all the free advertising. If everyone quit doing that those companys might actually sponsor at least one person per class!!!

I talked to a person Sunday who is in all of a motor builders catalogs and gets a discount,lol. The discount still doesnt bring the price they charge down to what you could buy your parts from Competition Products.
He never really thought about his name being marketable etc and worth more, thats unbelievable to me!!

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