Want to Be Sponsored? Think About This…

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10 Responses

  1. Drew Haerer says:

    Most people forget that the "pro" in pro-staff is for promotional and too many abuse it as "professional". Nowadays, everyone and their brother is sponsored, but as you said, the guys who are good at what they do find a way to stand out.

  2. Chris Payne says:

    Thanks for reading Drew. You are spot on. Promotional is the key to unlocking that magical door. Hopefully this will help some understand the two way street of partnerships with companies.

  3. Unknown says:

    Actually, there are very, very few people nowadays that are sponsored. In fact, the biggest misconception is that you are sponsored when a company offers you a discount to use their products. That is a pro deal, not a sponsorship. There are a lot of folks on "Deals" these days though for sure.

  4. NCPIERMAN says:

    i couldn't agree more with this i'm now a pro staffer for 2 company's and i do know its not about what i can get after all i'm not getting much,discount yes but even to me the discount is expensive.
    i won't try to sell something i dont like or trust,im not out there to REALLY sell im out there to promote what i love fishing 😉
    i love this read it is so true and i thank you for sharing it.

  5. Chris Payne says:

    Thanks for stopping by and reading guys. This is apparently a very big topic and will result in a few more articles. Look for a collaborative piece coming soon which will expand on the topic even more.

  6. Riverpirate says:

    Having been on Prostaffs for a long time, I have seen people come and go. They come because it sounds like a lot of fun and great benefits whether free or discount stuff. But most soon leave because the discount is not worth the work asked for or it was more work that they thought. Because to be a good prostaffer you should work to promote your companies. and yes that means more than wearing a shirt to tournaments. I rarely, if ever, fish tournaments anymore. But I speak in front of as many people as I can get in front of from boy scouts to trout unlimited groups to other assemblies. If they will let me speak I will be there. And yes sometimes I get paid for these seminars but more often I am there out of the passion I have for this sport of kayak fishing. That is what I get out of prostaffing. not money or the free stuff, though that comes along. I do this because I have a passion for it. I want everybody to enjoy this sport I love so much. To be able to share this passion and see people get in to the sport is where my enjoyment comes from. believe me I could actually fish a lot more if I weren't on a prostaff. And given the time and money I spend traveling and speaking a sponsor could not pay me enough money if that is why I was doing it.

  7. Chris Payne says:

    Thanks for the thoughts RP. Passion is what it's all about. I do 6-8 speaking engagements each year, half of them being to kids, and never ask for payment and always say yes if it is even a remote possibility. Teach them young about water safety and save a life later.

  8. Awesome…got a bud who needs to read this..back when i started looking to get sponsored/field staff i read all i could about sponsorshipd before apporaching my fav companies…its marketing and advertising …but to me its documenting fun and learning and teaching and the comrades we can make!awesome chris!

  9. ReXDeLReY says:

    This is great stuff Chris. Thanks for this. My two cents:

    I got into repping brands randomly – through making YouTube videos. I had no intention of being a brand ambassador or pro staffer. I was simply sharing my latest addiction and my newest passion. The brands I was using and organically promoting through my videos became the first few brands that picked me up. As I got deeper into the kayak fishing world, I discovered more brands and products I wanted to work with. It was awesome to get free stuff for doing something I already loved to do.

    The point of saying all this, is there's a new genre of staffers… the bloggers, the YouTubers, etc. I do tournaments, but I have yet to place… but I fish hard and I fish a lot. I like to think I represent an average angler who is crazy passionate about the sport – not necessarily a professional angler. I am a regular kayak angler guy – who films and produces YouTube videos.

    Don't get me wrong, I'd like to go fishing, travel and produce videos for a living – which is still very much the end goal. It doesn't mean I have to go the tournament winner route though, not anymore.

    Through social media and videos, you can perform a very important function for brands – people can see the product in use – in action. Younger brands acknowledge this, tech-savvy brands know this.

    For those who are more geared towards the YouTuber/Blogger route it takes two very simple things to have leverage with brands: great content and an audience.

    To acquire bigger brands, you need metrics – numbers and stats. How many views are your videos averaging? How many subscribers do you have? What's your total view count? To get "good" numbers you need good content. Plain and simple.

    If this is something you wanna do, you HAVE to produce great content and you build an audience.

  10. Chris Payne says:


    Absolutely. You just added a road map for the video side folks. Thanks!

    For those who want to know how to build an audience and be heard, I would suggest a book, "Platform" by Michael Hyatt. It talks about the does and don'ts of building audience and marketability. The most important thing to know from it is to be willing to put more in than you ever expect to get back. If you aren't willing to do it for free, you're not doing it with passion, you're just motivated. Passion AND motivation will win the day.

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