The search for sponsors has been a long one. For me to be affiliated with a company wasn’t about them sending me free merchandise and me parading around like a peacock. I didn’t want that, of course free stuff is lovely but I have worked with brands before that now, knowing what I know, I would happily give back anything they gave me and never utter their brand name again. At this tentative stage in my “career” I need support. For me that’s not “send me an your stock”- then that be that, for me it can be and should be a mutually beneficial relationship. Being each others cheerleaders. The most flattering thing about it is knowing you have a company behind you that believes in your potential and wants to see you do well, not for their maximum advertisement value (of course that’s massively important) but from one snowboarder/skier to another. To see someone with a talent, whether that’s me the sportsperson or the brand themselves reach what they are capable of.
Social media has become the biggest portal for advertisement and I have been dragged kicking and screaming into 2015. I am not a fan of the virtual world, ironically for a sport of which nature and natural basics are such fundamental elements, social media has become a very successful way to be a part of the online snow sports community. So I have got myself a Blog, Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, Vimeo and YouTube in a bid to further my reach. This is what attracts potential sponsors, they see the volume of people you can interact with.
Now I’ve learnt what separates a good sponsor from a faceless organisation is that they don’t just see money signs but also see a working relationship for both myself and the company. To grow through a genuine belief that the product is totally awesome and that I could perform to the best of my ability. When you go into a department store and see sales assistants who are selling clothes that they hate, believe me I’ve certainly been there, you can tell they are thinking FML. You want to feel the passion for the product to know and believe its something you want and need. This is how it should be with your sponsor, with Gilson its easy peasy lemon squeezy.
So, a little bit about Gilson- they are awesome yes of course but they have a wonderful USP, a message that is connected to their product, to encourage you to be the best rider you can be. Born and bred in Pennsylvania in the the lovely USA they are championing local products. Using the strong and durable raw material from the forests that surround them, they are making Snowboards with craftsmanship, high quality construction and attention to every detail, from graphics, to flex to camber and everything in-between.
Hang in there for some more info- I will be adding all the details of this great company to an additional page on the Blog. In the mean time visit http://www.gilsonboards.com/
PS- if you were wondering, yes I am as short as I seem, 5ft 2in, its a sad life.