Sponsored at Any Age?

As more people have been asking about “The Athlete’s Guide to Sponsorship: An Athlete Entrepreneur’s Guide to Dreaming Big, Racing Smart & Creating a Reliable Brand for a Long, Successful Career,” two questions that have come up quite frequently are:

  1. Is this book for junior athletes? AND
  2. Can I get sponsored at XY age?

The answer to the first question is that yes, a junior athlete definitely will benefit from reading the book. In fact, there are a few coaches I’ve heard from who’ve made it required reading for their younger athletes!

But the second question intrigued me the most. Can I get sponsored at 31 / 45 / 67 / 56, etc.? The answer is HECK YES.

Will it look the same as a junior getting sponsored, or a new rider getting picked up by a Pro Tour team? Probably.

But one athlete who read the book emailed me after and let me know that in his 40s, he already had several smaller sponsorships, and after reading the book, he made a few tweaks to his pitch and racer resume, and actually scored a new sponsor and improved his contract with one of his longtime sponsors.

The exact same principles of seeking sponsors apply at any age: WHAT DO YOU HAVE TO OFFER A SPONSOR? And honestly, the older you are, you may actually have more to offer than a younger rider. You may have an established local fan base, or a ride or run you’ve been leading for years. You might have a more unique viewpoint of the brand, and are better able to help provide content that speaks to their target demographic more directly.

For instance, think about a high-end cycling clothing brand. Sure, they want some younger, fast riders wearing their kit. But who’s buying the jerseys and jackets and bibs at full price? Likely, their target demographic is middle-aged riders with more disposable income. So maybe you, as a middle-aged rider, actually have a better story to tell that would resonate with that audience.

Seek sponsors or just enjoy the ride or run, but whatever you do, don’t let your age keep you from pursuing your athletic dreams!

Found this helpful? For more info and stories like this, get “The Athlete’s Guide to Sponsorship: An Athlete Entrepreneur’s Guide to Dreaming Big, Racing Smart & Creating a Reliable Brand for a Long, Successful Career” here!

(Also available in Canada and the UK!)

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