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Competition BBQ *On Topic Only* Discussion regarding all aspects of Competition BBQ. Experiences competing or visiting, questions, getting started, Equipment, announcements of events, Results, Reviews, Planning, etc. Questions here will be responded to with competition BBQ in mind.


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Unread 10-25-2011, 11:39 AM   #1
huminie
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Default Best Time To Look For Sponsors?

I would like to look for some sponsors for next year as I feel I have a lot to offer to potential sponsors.

I am wondering when the best time to approach them would be. On one hand I think that I should wait for this year to end (there are still 4 contests this year in CA) so I can have a full list of the year's accomplishments. On the other, I am thinking that some businesses may already be in the process of budgeting sponsorship dollars for next year.

I want to make the most compelling story possible without missing the window of opportunity.

When do you think the best time to approach sponsors would be?
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Unread 10-25-2011, 11:48 AM   #2
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I would say anytime. The sooner the better. I just contacted a few places myself and got positive feedback from one.
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Unread 10-25-2011, 11:54 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by huminie View Post
I would like to look for some sponsors for next year as I feel I have a lot to offer to potential sponsors.

I am wondering when the best time to approach them would be. On one hand I think that I should wait for this year to end (there are still 4 contests this year in CA) so I can have a full list of the year's accomplishments. On the other, I am thinking that some businesses may already be in the process of budgeting sponsorship dollars for next year.

I want to make the most compelling story possible without missing the window of opportunity.

When do you think the best time to approach sponsors would be?
Now, a lot of fiscal years start Oct 1st and Jan 1st They might be doing budget and marketing planning as we speak.
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Unread 10-25-2011, 11:57 AM   #4
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make your pitch as soon as you can and throw in somewhere in your discussion if they are already committed for their max this year that you hope they will consider you in the next budget planning year and if they are all ready committed find out when the new budget planning period is and contact them again during that time.
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Unread 10-25-2011, 12:09 PM   #5
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Best time to look for sponsors? After winning the Jack! (Or Royal.)
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Unread 10-25-2011, 12:12 PM   #6
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After you win The Jack Smokin' Hoggz was getting offers 30 minutes after they won.

More seriously, from what sponsored teams tell me, some sponsors don't really care how well you do. Winning a big event helps, but many will be more interested in how many "impressions" you will make, i.e. how many people will see the sponsor's name and promotional materials. Knowing how many contests you will be in and how many people attend those events will be a consideration. That would imply that you would want to shop around once you know your schedule for next year.
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Unread 10-25-2011, 02:18 PM   #7
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You also get impressions after winning a huge contest and media wanting to interview you. They arent looking for a new team to ask their opinions, no matter how many sponsors you have. These are things i have noticed. There are also many kinds of sponsors. From cash to product.
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Unread 10-25-2011, 02:39 PM   #8
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Thanks for the input guys (keep it coming). I have been so focused this year on one goal I just suddenly realized how late in the year it is during a current break. Guess I better get on it!

Oh, and I don't see myself winning the Royal or Jack any time soon, so I better start pounding the pavement.

As far as product vs. cash...well, I plan to approach the companies of products I currently use since my hope is to reduce costs. If they can throw some free product my way in exchange for me flying their banner, then I am game. I will accept cash from anyone, however!
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Unread 10-25-2011, 05:09 PM   #9
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Playing devils advocate, what do you have to offer that a 1000 other teams don't?
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Unread 10-25-2011, 05:50 PM   #10
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Good question, and that is the story I will have to start working on. The biggest factor is the fact that competitive BBQ in California is in its infancy and is growing at a very fast rate. The sport is attracting many new teams and has caught the interest of the public with events becoming more and more popular. Now is the the time for sponsors to get their foot in the door for this sport in the state. From there I will talk about my success in the state this year and my accomplishments as a new team. I have to believe that sponsors will want to back a successful team as they will want their product linked to a winner. I can certainly offer them that much.
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Unread 10-25-2011, 06:07 PM   #11
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We cooked meats once a month outside our butcher shop that they provided during the Winter and Spring. Posted pics on Forums, Facebook & PNWBA pages and got our comp meats provided.

I keep track of all my/our scoresheets since I have started competitive cooking and keep them in a folder along with accolades or news clippings to show potential sponsors. It has helped me reach local people that have products to share. It helps to win, but cooking a lot and being consistent is just as good.

Support the people whose products you use and it might just pay off.

Plowboys, Butcher BBQ, Dizzy Pig, Mojobricks, Cajun Bandit, Rib-O-Lator and others were very generous to me and I will continue to fly their banners onsite and answer anyones questions regarding their products and how I use them.

PNWBA Land isn't really considered a hotbed of BBQ, but it is growing, so if anyone has a product they might want to market here- my space is for rent!
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Unread 10-25-2011, 07:05 PM   #12
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Great info Brian!

I think we are in a pretty similar situation.

Thanks!
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Unread 10-25-2011, 11:30 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scottie View Post
You also get impressions after winning a huge contest and media wanting to interview you. They arent looking for a new team to ask their opinions, no matter how many sponsors you have. These are things i have noticed. There are also many kinds of sponsors. From cash to product.
There are teams and individuals out there that haven't won anything that have people falling over themselves to reach. It isn't what you've done. It is how you are marketing yourself. Winning the American Royal opened a few doors, but no near as many as people want to think.

Sometimes it is also who you know.
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Unread 10-26-2011, 10:23 AM   #14
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who you know is the key Todd. It opens doors.
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Unread 10-26-2011, 10:55 AM   #15
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Good point. I have seen some teams that don't do much but have some pretty amazing sponsors. I guess I better start getting know more people.
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