Dids Opens Up On Sponsorships and What They Mean to Him
Dids Opens Up On Sponsorships and What They Mean to Him
If there is one thing people are quick to slide into my DMs about, its asking how to get sponsored by the companies I am sponsored by. I always feel bad when I get asked this question because it is different for everyone. I will never just tell people no, I will always give some sort of hope to the answer, I might say that if I get a message from a YouTuber they would need to work on their brand a little, or try to branch out your photography ideas if an aspiring photographer DMs me, but I will NEVER put someone down for having a dream. I started with zero followers, just as everyone else did. If I can create what I have created for myself, then you can create yourself your own destiny. I don’t think anything is impossible.
Now that the tone is set, I am about to make some statements that are a little ballsy, but I feel people looking to pursue the next step of their dreams and potential careers need to know this information. I feel like there are 3 tiers of sponsorships/affiliations:
Tier 1: I would consider companies like Cinch Controllers and NoScopeGlasses as the entry level sponsor/affiliation considerations. They accept just about anyone to some form of affiliation and are a great way to get people used to selling products and getting their feet wet when it comes to feeling like they have a company that supports them to a degree.
Tier 2: This tier is a little larger of a coverage to me. I would say startup companies, smaller companies looking to gain some traction, or small affiliation links with no perks for companies like Loot Crate and Razer would fall here. This is where you may start to meet some of the people behind the companies, get some discount codes, and start to prove yourself to larger companies. You may receive a few products here or maybe even cash compensation! I would fit GlomTom and MainFrameUSA here!
Tier 3: This is the top notch deal here. I would say tier 3 affiliations and sponsorships are where you really start to make waves all around social media platforms. Discount codes are a given and you would be receiving both cash compensation and products here! GFUEL would be a great example of a Tier 3 Sponsorship.
Now keep in mind that this tier system isn’t actually a thing, nor am I suggesting that tier 1 companies are lower than tier 3 companies in terms of quality. There are sponsors for both tier 1 companies that would fit in a tier 3 level, so it is far from a standard, but for someone just starting to learn how this all works, it can be used as a general guideline. This made up tier system is not a reflection of the companies I mentioned, but are examples of how people can get started in the industry and create their own success and learn their own creative practices.
Here is where people might get mad. If you have 50 followers on Twitter and just made it a month ago, do not expect to email Corsair and hear back with a positive answer. At the same rate, not every person with 50,000 followers on Twitter are guaranteed to succeed at selling Razer Keyboards. The individual is what determines success at any level and I know of people who sell tons of NoScopeGlasses and do very well at it! You need to know your niche and how you can make it work for you. If you are just starting out, try applying for Tier 1 companies, get some affiliate links, and see how you can create sales! Use your skillset and creativity to pitch their products in such a way so that you can approach any industry leaders and hold your chin high as you pitch yourself as a brand to them and hopefully get accepted, it can be done.
With the basics of how sponsors and affiliates work I want to explain what they mean to me, I do not have any bullet points set out for me to type here, so this could get deep, or serious, or anywhere in-between. First things first, I will never, and have never support[ed] a company I do not believe in. That is not to say that some companies and I have had our arguments. That also isn’t to say that if you’re reading this and you are in control of sponsorships you call up the guy you want to head your Twitch team and say ‘You’re really f***ing hard to work with.’ After he just laid out the plan you still use to this day to grow your company [which is a true story and the company is having great success with the methods I showed them, but they don’t have my support anymore]. You will lose a willing worker every time. Alright small bashes aside. I like working with my sponsors closely. I try to remain in constant contact with all of them. To me it isn’t about how they can help me, it is solely what they need to use from my skillset to succeed as a company. Nothing more. I began my journey by being sent a tshirt from a company whose name I cannot remember at the current time. I couldn’t believe it, someone wanted to send me a shirt to promote their brand and their product. I was so excited and I took the picture and it was one of my best received posts at that given time. From here it only went up. I was getting messages and creating ways to market myself as both a person and a brand that companies felt intoxicating. I was learning the way to promote brands and make sales while still keeping true to myself and finding my own way through the crowd of people all trying to get to the top. From here I had purchased a hoodie from IntoTheAM based on a recommendation from a friend and snapped a quick picture of myself wearing it which lead to me being one of the first, and one of the top to this day, IntoTheAM sponsors. It was the work I put in with other companies and the way I marketed myself which attracted them to me and it only got better from there. From there I was approached by the wonderful people of GlomTom to finally be able to purchase and share their amazing products with the world.
Then I picked up Photography.
I made it my goal to somehow work for GFUEL. Be it taking photos or selling the product. I ended up landing both. From there I took photos of just anything I had in my room to practice composition and shooting for different situations with different tasks in mind, which lead me to receive offers from both Quest Nutrition and Logitech. I have gone on to do more with photography and videography, but that is for a different blog and a different time. It is a pure passion (probably the biggest passion) of mine.
And here I am today. I left the last part of the journey to now a bit abridged on purpose. I don’t want to lead you to the impression that I took the photos for Quest and Logitech with the intention of gaining sponsorships, because honestly, I didn’t see myself in that high of a force. But now I am able to say I have, with nothing but my will and work ethic alone, the most amazing sponsors this planet has.
Another thing I want to get out is this. I am only sponsored with these companies because I use their products, love their products, and have recommended their products even before attaining sponsorships and affiliations from them. I have told my contacts that I do not want them to tag me in the photos because I am not in this for my own gain, but rather to show the world how amazing the products work and make them look appealing enough with a photo or post to encourage you to try them out for yourselves. I know it’s my photo, and I do not want all of the replies to be about me or having my photo featured, it’s about the product, it’s about the company, I can look in the comments and smile seeing all of the people who with a single image are influenced or inspired to give something a shot. I bring this up because I got a lot of hate for making the video I use to introduce myself on YouTube [this video]. People were sending message of hate, saying I was a sellout and that I only did it for the money and the companies and I have no personal identity and all sorts of nonsense. At first I was a little taken back, but then I thought to myself this: If you were to record that same video with the same ideas in mind, you would have your own favorite products in it. Maybe you drink Monster > GFUEL, maybe you like Razer headsets over Logitechs, but at the end of the day, it’s the fact that I have created this life for myself that I wanted to share in that video. I am introducing myself showing all the amazing products, and more importantly the companies and people that I represent for those companies, that fuel me every day. I used that video to test out some new cinematography techniques and was very pleased with how it turned out and am proud to say I am able to support those companies on a more official level. I love talking with all of my contacts at the companies I support because they are some of the most creative minds I have ever met, and I love bouncing ideas off of them and working with them to create the most amazing campaigns that you all see on all of our social media accounts. I take a huge interest in the art behind it and the psychology behind what makes a product appealing and how I can use media and social media to encourage you to try the products I use on a daily basis. I receive messages daily asking how to get sponsored by x company or how do I get free stuff or if I can send them free stuff from my sponsor and that’s just as far from the reasoning behind this all as you can get. It kills me to see the mindset of get get get without one ounce of work put into it. I work harder every day to create the campaigns you see all over your feeds and spend easily 40-sometimes 80 hours a week on this. It’s my hobby it’s my life. If you’re reading this and have known me for a few years you and I would both laugh at this all because 2 years ago Dids would NEVER have seen himself here now, but I took a passion and made it something I hope to soon create a career of. I want to be able to create every day. I want to be able to sell every day. I want to be able to see your pupils get huge when you lay eyes on something I created. That’s what I live for. Not the fame it can come with, not the money it can come with. I want you to use code DIDS to try something new that I use daily to enhance your life. Every penny that I earn from doing what I do goes right back into creating better content for your viewing pleasures.
So what is my advice for someone trying to get started in the wide world of sponsorships? Don’t start emailing companies to get a sponsorship just to say you have a sponsor, I’ve done it and am not sponsored with anyone I sent an email to, yet I am sponsored by some of the largest names in all of eSports and the fitness world. Do NOT harass companies on Social Media for a sponsorship. If I ever somehow get to lead a team for sponsorships, you’d never get one from me. Instead of begging a company to sponsor you or harassing the sponsors of that company to sponsor you or send you free stuff, go out and create the content that can and will get you sponsored. Let’s say this, they give you a code, what do you do with it? You’ve learned NOTHING about how to market yourself or that product and will make little to no sales. I say that and 100% of the time see the person who begged for a code and got a code fall off the scene because they have no skills to succeed in that sponsorship. The company won’t do the work for you, and you surely didn’t do anything for them, so why ever bother? Get out there and create.
To finish up this essay, I just want to say that I will guaranteed think of like 90 more things to say after this gets submitted and will add as I see fit.
I want to take this time to thank each and every one of you who I have been able to influence to try a product I endorse. You know I don’t endorse anything I don’t believe in and I am so happy to see you all trying something new that will enhance your quality of life. Share it with me, we will smile together and make this world a better place. I don’t do this for me, I do this for you. And I have from Day 1. I look to inspire and bring out the best in you. If you ever have any questions or need any help or advice, my DMs are ALWAYS open and I will ALWAYS respond.
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