The job of a sales representative in the snowboarding industry is often said to be going the way of the dinosaur. But that doesn’t mean it’s impossible to find a good job in the field! If you’re passionate about snowboarding, you could be valuable to the industry. You have a good chance of breaking through!
Here’s how to become a snowboard rep:
- Be prepared for the competition.
- Develop An Online Presence.
- Make good connections.
- Study and improve your knowledge.
- Decide what kind of sales rep you want to be.
- Talk to other reps.
This article cover’s some important tips for becoming a snowboard rep. Be warned. There is no straightforward route. You’ll need to forge your own. Pull up a chair!
1. Be Prepared for the Competition!
Social media and influencer marketing has dramatically changed how sales work.
Companies rely less and less on sales representatives and more on boosting their online presence. This includes spreading the word about product lines via influencers and online promoters.
This has led to a steady drop in the demand for sales representatives across all industries, especially in niche industries such as snowboarding.
However, there are still a certain number of people who are confident in their sales skills and would like to try their hand at the job.
This means that a greater number of people compete for the same position, so you have to be ready to take down the competition. If you’re introverted or unmotivated then the job might not be for you.
This is not to say that it’s impossible to find a place as a snowboard rep! Despite modern advancements in marketing and sales, there’s still room for a good sales representative.
You just have to prove your worth and convince the managers that you’re necessary. You got this!
2. Develop An Online Presence.
If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em!
With the internet now capturing the majority of the world’s attention… you’d be mad not to have a strong online presence.
Not only will it provide an additional place to rep your products, you can also leverage your platform to obtain better pay terms with companies.
It also shows excellent initiative for any interviews.
One of the first steps I’d recommend is starting your own site to publish reviews or articles. You can learn how to start your own snowboard blog here.
3. Make Good Connections.
With fierce competition, the best thing to do is find good connections and build a reputation for yourself.
Knowing someone who works for a snowboarding company is often the easiest way to get a job as a representative.
A good way to get connections while building a good reputation is competing. Competing successfully will put the spotlight on you, and you might get approached by companies. Although, in that case, you’d probably be asked to become a sponsored athlete (which would be an even better option).
Alternatively, attending competitions allows you to meet important people in the industry. Even if you’re not super successful, you’ll still get a chance to talk to them and exchange opinions and, most importantly, contacts!
You’ll also get a chance to describe your sales skills and your experience; all this might just be your ticket in.
Whatever you do, try to surround yourself with people from the industry and befriend them. Good connections are key in any sales business.
4. Study and Improve Your Knowledge.
This tip applies not just to sales rep jobs but to pretty much any job out there. You’ll want to constantly keep improving and learning to stay on top of the game and get ahead of the competition.
There are tons of books you can dive into to learn more about various aspects of selling, from the psychology of sales to practical business tips. No time spent reading about your career of choice is wasted time!
Apart from that, you can take sales courses, or even better, do both simultaneously. Many colleges and other educational institutions offer introductory courses where you can learn a lot from professionals with experience under their belts.
It’s also a good idea to get an inbound sales certification. Such certifications are specifically geared toward beginners in the field.
You can also follow courses that will teach you the core skills you need to succeed. Plus, getting a certification means that an institution backs the skills you claim to have, so you’ll have higher chances of being taken seriously.
No matter what tools you choose, never stop learning. It’s the best way to get a good start and go farther than you expect.
5. Decide What Kind of Sales Rep You Want To Be.
When considering how to become a snowboard rep, you need to decide what type you’d rather be.
There are two different kinds of snowboard sales reps:
- In-house sales rep
- Independent sales rep
Both options have pros and cons, so you’ll have to weigh them carefully.
In House Snowboard Sales Reps
An in-house sales rep works for a company. They’re generally not in charge of business operations but receive instructions from the higher-ups.
This is a good option for a beginner because there is some degree of security regarding salary, and it’s much easier to learn the chops if you’re not doing everything alone.
Independent Snowboard Sales Reps
Despite working for a company, an independent sales rep is in charge of their own business operation. They often rep for a few companies simultaneously and have greater freedom. They usually work on a commission basis, so there’s less security regarding their salary.
However, an experienced and skilled sales rep can earn a very good salary this way. Especially if they have a good business network and multiple clients they rep for.
This is a good option for seasoned reps who are confident in their skills and know they can make sales regardless of challenging circumstances.
6. Talk To Other Reps.
I became a snowboard sales rep simply by bumping into one at the bar in my resort!
Even though other reps will often be your competition, you can learn a lot from them (especially if they’re older and more experienced). You should always be friendly toward them, even if you have opposing interests.
It’s also important not to get hung up on your particular industry. Befriend reps from other industries and try to learn as much as possible. Just because they’re selling a completely different product doesn’t mean they can’t give you useful advice!
Which Companies Should You Apply To?
If you want to become a snowboard rep, you might want to try some of the bigger companies first (Burton Snowboards for example).
This isn’t always the best route. Would you rather be a big fish in a small pond, or a small fish in a big one?
Personally, I’d recommend getting in with small companies from your local hill. Or better yet… the bigger companies from your local hill. Once you’ve carved out your reputation there, set your sights on the national brands.
If you want to become a snowboard rep, you’ve got some fierce competition.
However, you’ll probably find that those competitors quickly become some of your best friends! I was even the best man at a snowboard rep’s wedding… from the opposing rental company!
Remember, you should also be constantly learning, creating connections and forging friendships in the industry.
Good luck out there!