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Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The BUSINESS end of DIESEL Motorsports . . .

Most people come to the events wanting to have a good time with their diesel pickups, see friends, and watch the different diesel trucks compete be it racing, pulling or dyno.

What goes on before or during the event in order to make this all happen?

We get a lot of calls of people wanting to hold large diesel events and what does it take, most of them think a couple of thousand dollars. Unfortunately that wouldn't even rent the track, maybe barely pay for the personnel for a one day event.

Most drag strips rent from $6000-$15000 for the day depending on the location, then there is the insurance for the event at the track. The sled for the pulling, the track prep equipment, the dirt, people to run it and the electronics to display and radio the results.

The drag strip provides some personnel but the association has to supply the rest, the SFI techs, registration, front gate, etc. The cost of flying them in and housing them, feeding them and transportation for them  while they are in town is all included in the costs of the event.

Everything from tents for the vendors, tables, chairs, etc we either rent or buy in order to provide a service for our sponsors. We hang over 150 banners at the events and take them down, some are stolen by fans which is why we always ask for extras. Simple tasks as providing lunch and water for the 20 plus workers during the day is no small feat but helps when they are not too picky about what we provide.

The amounts of funds it takes to coordinate all of the functions is in the thousands of dollars and a combination of sponsor's funds, front gate profits and registration combined pays for most of the expenses.

The business end of it is endless if you don't know where to properly place your marketing and advertising dollars, we have tried newspapers, radio, web, and even tv but radio seems to work the best for us in rural areas. Normal rates are anywhere from $1500 to $5000 for a week of advertising depending on the local stations.

Gathering of sponsors to fund the events that DIESEL Motorsports plans for the year is a job that never has an end. No sooner you wrap up one event you are selling on the next event, calling all of the local shops, businesses and vendors who care to try and sell products to the fans. Local sponsors need to see a return on the monies they spend so they need to sell more than what the booth or sponsorship costs!

The selling and gathering of yearly sponsors is a full time job that requires hours or preparation, phone calls/conferences and face to face meetings. You first have to convince the person you are selling to and then he has to get approval from the rest of his group for the funding. This requires answering questions surrounding the effectiveness of DIESEL Motorsports in relationship to their business or products plus a ROI! I have sold to companies over three years before they could get approval and feel comfortable putting their funds into our sport. They want to see the numbers and can you help them sell their products or services. Every year they evaluate the results in order to justify the funding for the next year. We have to help them provide the numbers in reports and figures.

The time we spend on lobbying is huge since this helps convince more and more manufacturers to get into the sport which results in more sponsors plus new performance products for DIESEL Motorsports. Some of the new products are fantastic and will sell quite well in our industry, knowing which products to push and ask for is the experience we bring as an association that knows what enthusiasts will buy for their trucks. We passed out over 35,000 flyers for future events at trade shows last winter promoting our sport and sponsors.

So the BUSINESS end of DIESEL Motorsports is a lot of hard work long before it hits the track and is a bigger part of time than the events. That being said we are quite happy when the final product (event) is over and then we proceed to the next!

See you at the track and enjoy what so many others have put into the effort in order for the event to happen!

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