By: Ruben Najera
Sponsors: Six Starz Skateboards,Powerbar,Driscolls skateshop,GripGum,S-One Helmets, Khiro bushings,Snuggbuds headphones,Nitro Bearings,Spaceycloud clothing,Nebula eyewear,Peter Grimm headwear,Sworn wheels,and Draven shoes.
“Can you sponsor me?” I can’t count the amount of times I have been asked this. I see these very words typed often in comments via an Instagram or Facebook. Although we should never forget that fun comes first in skateboarding, here is how to get sponsored in skateboarding. Here are a few tips coming from someone who successfully has navigated their way to skateboarding for a living! Read on and prepare for a crash course in the Do’s and Don’ts of how to get sponsored in the skateboard industry.
1. Don’t mass email a hundred different brands
Don’t mass send your footage and links and CC or forward everyone via the exact same email. Honestly this is probably the worst thing you can do. It comes off as desperate and shows you truly have no passion for who you ride for.
It sends off a message that you’re willing to ride for any brand which sends you free product. You need to be committed and dedicated to the brand you will ride for. Trust me it goes a long way. If you really dig a brand show them you really dig it , never give up and they will recognize that your true. Remember real recognizes real!
2. Do Put Energy and Time into Your Emails
Please do not send emails like this..
I want to ride for you…
See my video attached.
Don’t do email a bunch of companies at once with a blanket letter, like this!
Research the owner or team manager’s name. Personalize your emails. Include three specific reasons why their company is better than others.
3. Do Show Dedication to Their Brand
On that note, from earlier remember that you can’t send a video of you wearing NikeSB’s to the Vans team manager. This just doesn’t make any sense and does not show your true dedication or commitment to the brand. You need to be representing the brand your submitting to.
4. Don’t Put Music On Your Tape
Leave out the music unless you know the musical tastes of the person reviewing the video. If the reviewer doesn’t like the music, it will distract them from your skating. It doesn’t hurt to put your name, phone number, and age in your video titles.
5. Don’t Be Afraid to Send to Lesser Known Brands
Remember that companies have budgets that go towards their teams and athletes. If everyone is trying to skate for the same skateboard brand your odds no matter how good you are will be extremely low. A lot of times its better not to go with the ”˜cool’ brands that are in. Try something new or ride for a brand that you respect and know will be the next big thing but isn’t quite yet. If you go along with them for the ride, it could pay off! Go for the lesser known brands first!
“Think about it: if there was a fire and everyones exiting the front door your odds be better going out the back door”
6. Do Build a Network of Skaters and Get as Much Footage as Possible
Filming and getting photos when you start off can be tough. Why not start your own skate crew or even small brand?
Gather a group of your friends together, build a brand, and get footage. You could all help get each other.
Footage and association will help your credibility. As our friends get hooked up, you now have a network to get into the skate industry. If all else fails, you’ll have a heck of a time doing it! There is nothing like skateboarding with the homies! Great times can also be productive times! Not to mention you can possibly sponsor some other skaters in the process.
Start a wax company? Spray painted griptape? T shirts? These are all really easy startups!
7. Do Start by Getting Sponsored by a Local Skateshop
And lastly as much as you want to shoot for the stars and aim for that dream sponsor the truth is you should truly start local first. Best place to start sending videos to? Aim for the local skateshop. It is often the best starting point.
They are the true hub for your community, and what better of a first sponsor than the spot you have been getting your goods from for years?! Many times these shops have “shop flow” programs with brands that they already currently carry in store. There are many well known professionals that have started this way! Keep it local support your local skateshop NOT the chain mall store!
Examples of Good Sponsor-Me Videos
What Makes Them Good?
-Less Than Five Minutes Long
8. Last Step: Do Contact Companies!
You can find most of the contact info for companies on their websites. Try to research the name of the team manager. This will show them that you did your research.
Email Addresses of a Few Select Skateboard Companies:
Absolute Board Co – firstname.lastname@example.org
C1rca Shoes – email@example.com
Crailtap – firstname.lastname@example.org
Element Skateboards – email@example.com
Plan B Skateboards – firstname.lastname@example.org
Powell-Peralta – info@SkateOne.com
Shrub Distribution – email@example.com
Toy Machine – Mike Sinclair – firstname.lastname@example.org
Welcome Skateboards – email@example.com
Snail Mail Addresses:
10 Downing St. 6B
New York, New York 10014
2947 Boulder Avenue
Dayton, OH 45414
1831 Market Street
San Francisco, CA 94103
15272 Jason Circle
Huntington Beach, CA 92649
930 W. 16th Street
Costa Mesa, CA 92627
Bueno Skateboard Place
16551 Burke Lane
Huntington Beach, CA 92647
22500 S. Vermont Avenue
Torrance, CA 90502
C1RCA Footwear and Apparel
1211 Puerta Del Sol #170
San Clemente, CA 92673
Attn: Free Stickers please!
[City skateboards/Hubba/Venture/Lucky/Think skateboards]
2059 Ingalls Street
San Francisco, CA 94124
P.O. BOX 1279
SANTA CRUZ, CA 95061
[INDEPENDENT/SANTA CRUZ/KRUX/MOB GRIP/CREATURE/RICTA]
P.O. Box 2718
Santa Cruz, CA 95063
[DGK skateboards/Gold Wheels]
c/o Free Stickers
6351 Yarrow Drive Suite E
DVS Shoe Co.
955 Francisco Street
Torrance, CA 90502
121 Waterworks Way Suite 100
Irvine, CA 92618
25422 Trabuco Rd., Suite 105 #245
Lake Forest, CA 92609
25422 Trabuco RD
Suite 105 #235
Lake Forest, CA 92609
[Zero/Mystery/Fallen] | [CONFIRMED]
BLACK BOX DISTRIBUTION
2777 LOKER AVENUE W. UNIT A
CARLSBAD, CA 92010
[PLAN B SKATEBOARDS/SILVER TRUCKS/FKD BEARINGS/PHANTOM TRUCKS]
c/o FREE STICKERS
1410 Vantage Ct.
Vista, CA 92083-8509
Tum Yeto Distribution
2001 Commercial St.
San Diego, CA 92113
P.O. Box 3960
Sants Barbara, CA 93130
Stereo Sound Agency
1427 A North La Brea Ave
Los Angeles CA 90028
6550 Katella Ave
Cypress, CA 90630
[world Industies/Blind/Almost/Speed Demons/Darkstar/Enjoi/Tensor]
225 S Aviation Blvd
El Segundo, CA 90245
DC Shoes Inc.
1333 Keystone Way Unit A
Vista, CA 92081
40 West 23rd Street
New York, NY 10010
1740 Monrovia Avenue
Costa Mesa, CA 92627
We hope you take all of these ideas into consideration. Please do not get too bummed out if companies don’t respond. Keep in mind skateboarding is always just fun. It will remain fun whether you get sponsored or not.
Don’t get discouraged. Many skateboarders don’t get sponsored from the first tape. Remember, Michael Jordan didn’t make his high school basketball team!
Skate on 🙂
What Do Think? Comment Below With Your Question For the Author…