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John's Journal... Entry 43, Day 3

How To Get Sponsors

click to enlargeEDITOR'S NOTE: Twenty-seven-year-old Tim Horton of Spruce Pine, Alabama, has earned the title of 1999-2000 B.A.S.S. Angler of the Year. He accumulated more tournament points than any other angler and won more than $200,000 in tournaments and sponsorship and lived the great American dream during the 1999-2000 season. Every man who picks up a rod and reel dreams of getting sponsors and fishing for big bucks. Horton explains how to get fishing-tackle manufacturers as sponsors for major tournaments.

click to enlarge"You have to fish competitively," Horton said. "You have to bring bass to the scales almost every time you go out. You've got to know how to find and catch fish under different water and weather conditions in lakes all over the nation." "When you've got a manufacturer sponsor, you also have responsibility of selling their products. Not only do you need to know how to fish in all kinds of conditions, you need to know how to fish with all kinds of equipment."

To sell products and teach other anglers how to fish, you've got to prove that you can catch bass under tournament pressure, like Horton has. But being able to catch bass is not the only requirement. Many anglers have the ability to simply catch fish, but not all anglers garner the interest of potential sponsors in the industry.

click to enlarge"You have to present a clean-cut image," Horton said. "Using profanity or having a sloppy appearance, unprofessional outfitting, untrimmed hair or even a bad attitude will turn off sponsors. If you don't look talk and handle yourself like a professional fisherman, then it won't matter how many fish you catch. They won't hire you. You must handle yourself well in public. You must be courteous and kind to everyone you meet, and remember that the people who want to talk to you buy products that you want to endorse. Manufacturers want to sponsor you. However, if you're not a good salesman, you won't have many sponsors."

As Rick Clunn of ---------- "To get sponsors like Tim Horton has done, you have to prove that you don't need them. Use your own money to go tournaments, work for sponsors for nothing, and prove you're worthy of being sponsored. You've got to get someone to believe in you."

click to enlargeTim Horton had a few sponsors who truly believed in his drive to get to the top, and now sponsors come looking for him.

Tomorrow: A Tournament Angler's Life On The Road




Check back each day this week for more about Tim Horton ...

Day 1 -Tim Horton's Leap From Fishing Nobody To King Of The Fishing World
Day 2 -The Rewards Of Reaching The Top
Day 3 -How To Get Sponsors
Day 4 -A Tournament Angler's Life On The Road
Day 5 -The Tournament Lifestyle Of A Professional Angler

John's Journal