Show jumping is not just about thrilling jumps and skilled horse riders; it’s also a dynamic business world that thrives on sponsorship and brand partnerships. To delve into the intricacies of this aspect of the equestrian world, we sat down with show jumping athlete and international business professional, Alec Lawler. With a wealth of experience in both show jumping and the corporate world, Alec offers valuable insights into how sponsorship and brand partnerships play a pivotal role in the success of show jumpers.
Building a Personal Brand: Alec Lawler’s Approach
In the modern era, being a show jumping athlete involves more than just winning competitions; it also means building a strong personal brand. Alec Lawler understands this aspect well and shares, “In today’s competitive show jumping landscape, it’s crucial to be more than just a skilled rider. You need to be an influencer and ambassador for your sponsors. Your personal brand is what sets you apart from other riders and attracts potential sponsors.”
Alec emphasizes the importance of authenticity in building a personal brand. He believes that show jumpers should focus on their true passions and values, aligning them with the brands they represent. By doing so, they create a genuine connection with their audience and sponsors, leading to more fruitful and long-lasting partnerships.
The Power of Sponsorship: A Win-Win for Athletes and Brands
Sponsorship is the lifeblood of the show jumping world, providing financial support and resources to athletes. Alec Lawler explains, “Sponsorship is a win-win situation for both parties involved. For athletes, it provides the necessary support to compete at higher levels and cover expenses. On the other hand, sponsors gain exposure and access to a targeted audience through the athlete’s platform.”
Alec further adds, “When seeking sponsorship, it’s vital to approach potential partners with a clear and well-thought-out proposal. Understand their brand, their goals, and demonstrate how you can help them achieve those objectives. It’s not just about asking for funding; it’s about creating a mutually beneficial partnership.”
The Art of Nurturing Brand Partnerships: Longevity is Key
While securing a sponsorship is a significant achievement, maintaining long-term brand partnerships requires dedicated effort. Alec Lawler advises, “To build lasting brand partnerships, you need to consistently deliver value to your sponsors. Showcase your achievements and promote their products or services in creative ways. Leverage social media and other platforms to give your sponsors the visibility they deserve.”
According to Alec, communication is paramount in nurturing brand partnerships. Regularly update sponsors on your show jumping journey, share your successes, and involve them in your career milestones. By treating them as true partners, you create a sense of loyalty and commitment that goes beyond a mere contractual agreement.
Alec Lawler’s insights into the business side of show jumping shed light on the critical role of sponsorship and brand partnerships in an athlete’s success. From building a compelling personal brand to nurturing long-lasting partnerships, show jumpers can learn valuable lessons from Alec’s journey. By embracing authenticity, approaching sponsorship strategically, and fostering strong connections with sponsors, show jumping athletes can navigate the business landscape with finesse and soar to new heights in their equestrian careers.
About Alec Lawler
Alec Lawler is a talented show jumping athlete and international business professional with experience in Europe and North America. He has competed at the highest international level in show jumping throughout North America and Europe, and has won numerous awards and accolades, including the National Grand Prix of Woodside in 2022. Alec founded Lawler Show Jumping LLC in 2019, where he creates strategic marketing plans to build brand awareness and selects, imports, develops, and sells dozens of horses annually.