I never thought sponsorship was a possibility for me.
I thought that was only for those out of my league, the people I follow on instagram, not people I know or associate with. I never thought it would happen to me.
But if you want something bad enough, it will happen, you just need to be willing to work for it.
I think the first mistake people make with sponsorship is thinking that it will just some to them and that they wont have to work for it. But lets face it, you have to be willing to work for it, you need to be good enough and you need to be able to add value in some way, you also need to be willing to give a bit more than your given for a period of time. I’m not saying I am all of these, but I know I can offer something through my social media following on my clean treats FaceBook page. We all know how much of an advertising pull facebook has become.
I was at a photo shoot for Oxygen magazine earlier this year, and after the shoot I had a chat to the photographer whose wife is sponsored by Mushasi supplements, I thought it would be beneficial to pick his brain a bit. He informed me of the things mentioned above. That to many athletes consider themselves good enough and for this reason they can come across as arrogant and unapproachable. No sponsor is going to want an arrogant rep, where people are to intimidated to go and ask them when it is they use, that’s not good marketing. In addition he has even seen competitions where the winner is approached by the owner of a company after the show (the competitor unaware of who they are) and as they are in the moment of winner, fob the potential sponsor off as they are not worth their time, again that is potential sponsorship gone.
He also informed me that to be sponsored, you do not need to win, again its about adding value. Sometimes the company is not after the biggest of the most shredded athlete, they want someone with a more approachable face, and if the winner has harsh tattoos up the side of his face, then that may not be him.
My first sponsorship for me, came through my training, Kate Proessler of ProTraining. Kate trained me for the first time last year, and I got on well with her immediately. Her approachable attitude, willingness to help and guide, no question to stupid and her unforgiving nature in a workout session meant I quickly understood what she stood for and took a liking to her and her practices. Kate also competes herself, and for hat reason questioning her knowledge was not necessary. Upon starting my training with Kate, she follows a Poliquin regime, I saw results immediately and I never questioned what she told me. The end result, I got where I needed to be, and I won and this can only be because of what Kate did for me.
This meant I had nothing but kind words to say about Kate and her programs and if people ask I enjoy it all and live by it. Kate has not only taught me how to live a healthier lifestyle but it has made me happier. I am not a groaner and moaner when it comes to a difficult task, and for me I set myself the goal of competing, no one else, so what I was going through was my won doing. I don’t like to come across as weak either so for me it’s a ‘get in and do it or go home’ attitude.
I think it is a combination of this positive attitude, healthy ongoing lifestyle and willingness to help those also in my team and trained by Kate which led her to take me on as her first sponsored athlete this year when i sat down to talk to her again for comp prep in January. This came as a huge shock to me, and one I was happy to accept. I am more than happy to fly the ProTraining flag for them and help wherever possible, and proud that they considered me to take on this role.
The value I believe I add, as mentioned before, is also through my facebook page clean treats, which many of you would follow aswell. This following is a huge draw card to those trying to market their products.
After the Tasmanian State Titles last year, Bulk Nutrients owner and operator approached me, as they were major sponsors of the show. We had a bit of a chat and he took down my details. From there on we have been in contact a number of times. Now a lot of this contact was initiated by me. Like I said, it wont always come to you. I was trying to add value and ensure they could see that I would provide this. Ideas such as considering selling protein treats in addition to the powders as I believe this is a huge draw card, while the ideas are liked, the process to putting them in place is larger than I realised.
I went to America and when I returned was contacted, the opportunity to be in Oxygen Magazine was available for me and the would fly me to QLD for the shoot which would be published in the coming months. This was such an exciting experience, as if I would say no! I didn’t tell many about the shoot however, I tried to keep my carbs close to my chest. You might wonder why, but the fear of telling to many people before it came out was terrifying to me. What if I got there and they took the photos and there were no good ones? I haven’t done many photo shoots so how would I know! I didn’t want to be that person that counted their chickens before they hatched. But, it was published and it was a proud moment for me.
The next few months continued and my fan page on FB continued to grow. I worked for Bulk Nutrients at FitX and offered up my time. I went on to compete in the Hobart show and after that I met with Bulk Nutrients in their office in Hobart around the end of April and the offer was put forward, I could then call myself a Bulk Nutrients Ambassador. I now provide my assistance by helping to promote their product on my Facebook page in yummy protein recipes. But don’t think I don’t use the product that I preach, I do and I love it. It’s the only protein I use and I love that its Tasmanian. I personally don’t think I could promote a product I don’t use, and the quickest way to learn something is through practice which is what I consider using the product does.
So if you do have any questions in regards to the products I use, what you should consider, BulkNutrients or my Trainer in particular feel free to ask away!
So I think in the end it all comes down to hard work. You don’t have to have a fan page with 1,000s of fans, that’s just something I can offer, I know plenty of sponsored athletes that don’t provide this and aid in other ways, perhaps they own a gym in which case they can plaster advertising all over it, or they have their own supplement shop they can stock the product that sponsors them. Just keep working hard at it and be passionate, as it shows!
Now for this Clean Caramel Peanut Protein Slice i have promised, and it’s an amazing tasting treat! Careful you don’t eat it al in one go! You think I’m exaggerating saying that, wait until you try it!
Peanut Caramel Peanut Slice
For the base;
1tbsp agave syrup
1tbsp melted coconut oil
1/2 scoop bulk nutrients Vanilla WPI
I use quinoa oats so they are already a fine consistency, if using whole oats whizz in the blender first for about 5-7 pulses to loosen them up a bit. Combine all the ingredients in bowl or blender and once combined press into the base of a lined small loaf pan. Place in the fridge till needed again.
For the filling;
1/2c (130g) natural crunchy peanut butter
20g coconut oil melted
50g sugar-free maple syrup
1/3c (30g) crushed peanuts or other nut
Combine all the ingredients in a bowl except the crushed peanuts/nuts. Pour this over your base layer and even out – I find this easiest by using the back of a spoon run under hot water. Now sprinkle your crushed nuts over top of this and push lightly into the topping. Place back in fridge till needed.
For the topping
70g no added sugar chocolate
1 scoop chocolate Whey Protein – I use Bulk Nutrients WPI
2tsp coconut oil
melt your chocolate and oil together and stir until smooth. Gradually add your protein powder into the mix and whisk in to remove any lumps. Once all added, pour over your peanut layer and shake lightly to smooth out.Place in the fridge for min 1 hr to set. Slice with a hot knife once ready – makes 15 squares.