Horse riders are sponsored to help offset the cost of caring for their horse and show entry fees. Cost may include transporting, tack & supplies, and fees for products needed to care for horses. There are also costs associated with advertisement and competition clothing. The riders are usually sponsored by business owners or organizations that show an interest in horse riding.
What’s in it for the Sponsor?
If a business or organization becomes a sponsor of a rider in a huge event or competition this could mean a lot of exposure. Sometimes thousands of people, if not more, show up for these events. This type of exposure could change a business or organization tremendously. Sponsorship is also something that could be written off for tax purposes.
Companies can benefit from sponsoring riders by displaying banner ads or signs that are placed on trailers and on the horse. Signs can also be worn on the rider’s uniform. Whenever business owners or organizations do fundraisers, the horses can be used as an attraction if there is an outdoor function. Sponsors can be included on flyers, business cards, and any advertisement done for the horse rider.
How to Get Sponsored
Needing sponsorship is one thing and how to actually get sponsored is another. The rider trying to get sponsored should present himself or herself in a way that is professional.
- A formal sponsorship letter should be written.
- This letter should be hand delivered by the equestrian.
- The rider should arrange a meeting and be able to verbalize the need.
- The rider should always follow-up with the potential sponsors to see if they are interested in sponsorship.
- If sponsorship is received, provide a thank you letter and be able to show proof of how their funds were used.
Got the following?
You have better chances if you do!
- Pet Stores
- Local Farms
- Horse Supply Stores
- Tack and Supply Stores
- Horse Clothing Apparel Stores
Candidates for Sponsorship
Target marketing is the best way to eliminate those that may not have an interest in sponsorship. There are people that love horses and even have business that cater to their needs. They would be very good choices. This does not mean, though, that people that do not have businesses that deal with horses won’t sponsor a rider.
Annual Sponsorship Campaigns
One primary goal here is to get sponsors to sponsor the rider each year by providing a marketing campaign that will allow sponsors to receive paid advertisement each year. Riders who compete often can present annual ad campaign proposals to sponsors yearly. Riders can start off by following up with sponsors and sending a second letter of thanks for the previous sponsorship. This then is a great opportunity to phone the sponsor to find out if they would like to sponsor again that year.
Providing Different Sponsorship Packages
This is a great idea because small businesses or organizations may want to become a part of the sponsorship but may not want the expense of a full sponsorship package. There are even organizations that may want to sponsor each event or others that may want to sponsor all events large or small. This is a great time to think about the types of sponsorship to make available. There are many ways a rider can be sponsored. Maybe one organization would want advertising and maybe another would be more interested in helping out with the cost of caring for the horse. Offering different packages will provide options for future sponsors.
Showing Proof to Sponsors
Companies may not purchase sponsorship packages unless they furnish proof. At the time of the initial meeting, provide snapshots or videos that will convince this business owner that you are a legitimate rider. Also, allowing other previous sponsors to be used as a reference is key.
Building a Marketing Campaign for Sponsorship
Building a marketing campaign is something that can be done by the rider but there are also people that can be hired if this is something that the rider does not want to be involved in. There are trained professionals that can put together entire packages that include the sponsorship letters, banners, signs, business cards, flyers, and even more. This takes the load off of the rider.
For each question, choose the best answer. The answer key is below.
- What's the first thing you need to get sponsored?
- A full horse supplies store
- A formal sponsorship letter
- Awards from local events
- A full horse supplies store
Sealing the Sponsorship Agreement
There should be a signed agreement between the sponsor and the rider. This way both ends are held responsible for whatever is agreed upon during the meeting. This agreement should include every detail of the package that the sponsor is interested in.
Seeking sponsorship for a horse rider is not so hard to do; however, it should be done in a professional manner that is rewarding for the sponsor. The sponsor should be convinced that their business or organization stand to benefit by providing sponsorship.
John Wolfgang from Europe on December 13, 2017:
Great article, I have posted a complementary article identifying the key aspects of sponsorship agreement that may be of interest to you!
Nelle on December 13, 2014:
That's way the beesstt answer so far!
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Dianna Mendez on June 26, 2014:
My granddaughter just started taking riding lessons this year and I discovered it's a whole new world when it comes to this sport. Great information to know and I will keep this on file for future reference.
Ann1Az2 from Orange, Texas on June 23, 2014:
I guess getting sponsored for a horse riding event is similar to getting sponsored for anything else in the way of sports - convince the one sponsoring that they will get something in return!
Good info and well done!