So when it comes to motocross sponsorship, there are mainly four different types that we typically see in the industry, and understanding what they are and which one you want will make a big difference in how successful you are with landing support.
A lot of the time riders will simply get what they can when it comes to sponsorship, but this approach often leads to two things, and that’s that the rider has undersold themself and could get more support, or they don’t get any support at all because they don’t have any direction in their approach.
So understanding what sponsorship will be most suitable for your racing type will give you direction in how you approach sponsors, while it’s also very clear to the sponsor of what you want, and that will make the process progress a lot more smoothly.
So the most common form of sponsorship in motocross is a discount sponsorship, and this is something that every rider no matter their level of racing can achieve.
A discount sponsorship is pretty self-explanatory, and you’re most likely to get this sort of deal through your local dealership or service shop.
Now a discount sponsorship might not seem like much, but I believe this is actually really valuable for everyday racers in motocross.
We all know how expensive racing motocross is, so if you can get 10, 20 or 30 percent off your parts and gear through your local store, you can save yourself hundreds and even thousands of dollars per season.
It’s up to you in how you negotiate the discount and what you think will make it worthwhile for both you and the sponsor, but being professional in your approach and offering value from the start of negotiations will get you the best deal.
FREE PRODUCT OR SERVICE
So this next type of sponsorship is similar to a discount, and it’s free product or service.
This type of sponsorship is also another one that any rider can obtain with the right approach and a value offer that’s beneficial to the sponsoring company.
Free product or service is very common through bike shops, but it also extends to the brands themselves.
Sometimes free product sponsorships can actually be worked through the bike store - so if you manage to get yourself a discount sponsorship with the dealership, it would be a great chance to work a free product sponsorship with a brand as well by leveraging the store’s relationship and buying power with the company.
When it comes to sponsorship, you want to make things easy on yourself because earning and maintaining sponsors is hard work - it’s just as much as work as training for race day and even preparing your bike.
So by maximising the opportunities with a single company are really beneficial, such as a discount sponsorship with a store and using their influence to get free product from the brands themselves.
Now the next type of sponsorships is a financial sponsor, and this is probably the most difficult to obtain.
A lot of riders are looking for financial support because racing is very expensive, although getting money from a company requires you to step up your approach and how you go about sponsorship.
You will need to be extremely professional, have a clear value offer that’s going to give the sponsor a return on their investment, and you’re going to have to outline how their money will be spent to support your racing efforts.
A financial sponsorship seems like the ideal way to be sponsored, but it does come with added pressure and commitment to deliver on what you’ve promised, as a company giving a discount or product isn’t as much of a loss to them if things don’t work out compared to them outlaying cash.
The reward is obviously great if you can manage to pull off and maintain a financial sponsorship, but it something most riders struggle to continue with and that’s mainly because they haven’t delivered the sponsor enough value rather than race results.
So the last type of sponsorship is a donation, and this can be in the form of money or free product.
The difference between a donation and the other three types of sponsorship is that there aren’t any string attached, meaning you don’t need to deliver a return to the company, you just need to use the money or product they’ve given you for what it’s intended for.
This is actually quite common in motocross - many times local riders will land free product through a brand or distributor, and they simply get their two sets of gear and maybe a helmet, and that’s the last they hear of each other.
There’s also the financial side, and this usually comes from a person or a company that wants to help someone progress, or they simply want to be involved in the sport.
In this scenario, the sponsor is basically rewarded by knowing that they’ve helped someone.
Most of the time donation sponsorships will come through existing relationships or through mutual connections, and I’ve seen this happens many times locally in the racing scene.