Airia in New Athlete Sponsorship Program
During 2016 Airia will start a new program to recruit elite runners and triathletes around the world. The major objective of the program is to be an integral part of record breaking, but equally important is to incorporate top athlete perspectives into product development.
A quick look on running and athlete sponsorship
For most athletes, sponsorship is one of few sources of income. Few or no professional athletes get into sports because they believe it is their safest course for making a living. It is passion, love of the sport and fame that drives most athletes. But as had been said many times, love doesn’t automatically put food on the table. This is where sponsorship comes into play.
Companies have a different goal for sponsoring athletes. Athletes can give credibility and raise brand awareness. Tales of heroes are deep-rooted in humanity and athletes represent this very well. Our brains work by association, so by utilizing these two facts, a brand wants to build association patterns in a consumer’s mind that are favorable to the brand. So when an athlete has a brand logo on his or her chest while standing on the podium in the national championships, consumers associate the brand with the positive feelings of winning and athletic heroism.
In the cross section of athletes needing income and brands needing heroes, the market for sponsorships is born.
Some sports have huge sponsorship contracts, which is not the case in running. If you are not in the absolute top position world-wide, there are not many opportunities. Runners really need extreme passion for the sport to be able to continue. There are some distances that get more media coverage and therefore are more worth to the sponsors. Like 100 m track and field, but for the rest, it is a struggle.
Why sponsor runners?
We have constructed the Airia running shoes for maximal running speed and to give runners a competitive advantage. It makes sense for us to collaborate with recognizable professional athletes to compete and win wearing Airia shoes. Along with our further scientific testing work, these hopeful podium finishers will help us prove Airia shoes performance.
Airia wants to sponsor runners to achieve a mutual vision of breaking records and pushing boundaries.
Rounding the existing structure
We started our sponsor efforts by reaching out to the athletic representatives for the top 100 men and women marathon runners in the world. This has proven to be a struggle. Occasionally we have had positive experiences with knowledgeable managers interested in new technology and working in their athletes best interest. With those we still have strong, ongoing communication. But many of them are very hard to reach and often don’t even respond to inquiries. That we find a bit difficult to understand since it is their job to manage this kind of contact to create best possible opportunities for the individual athletes they represent. In some cases we have seen the representatives being consultants for a specific brand, effectively blocking all other brands from getting in touch with the athletes they represent.
But since we have committed to this program, we won´t let the difficulties stop us. There are thousands of potential runners and triathletes who we would love to sponsor but who don’t have a known athletic representative representing them. Many runners who end up on the podium or could reach the podium in national championships actually don’t have a sponsorship agreement at all. Now we are on a mission to find all those runners (with or without representatives) and enlist them to run in Airia running shoes.
The athlete offer
First and foremost, we know from our studies that Airia running shoes really do give the majority of runners a competitive advantage compared to other products.
In our sponsorship program we offer payments based on the number of times the athlete podiums in competitive environments. Even small local races are eligible for economic compensation.
Perhaps equally important is the program for product development, in which the athletes have the opportunity to be near the epicentre of creating the fastest running shoes possible. We can promise an interesting journey through running science and product development under the guidance of the Airia motto of “Hacking Sports”.
And of course we offer our athletes a package of high quality training and racing apparel.
Interested? Contact us.
If you want to become an Airia sponsored runner or triathlete, please send us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org. State your name, current PB´s and results from recent races. Address and size for clothes and shoes is a good thing as well.