|The International Bicycle Exposition, Interbike, 2008 has come and gone, and SORBA had a successful trip this year. Tom Sauret, Walt Bready, and I flew out to Vegas to spend the week to thank current sponsors and recruit new ones. Yes, we rode bikes at the outdoor demo, but that was a small part of the trip. We go to Interbike each year to connect the industry to SORBA's mission and our members. This connection helps makes SORBA a success.
Tom collects t-shirts throughout the year from our events. Each t-shirt has our sponsors' logos emblazoned on the back, and we distribute these t-shirts to our sponsors at Interbike. As we present each t-shirt, we thank our sponsors for past contributions, and we ask for their continued support. Each sponsor that we thanked this year promised to continue support, and many added that they'd like to do more.
|What do our sponsors do for SORBA? They supply us with products and promotional items. We distribute these products to our chapters, and the chapters use the products as fundraisers, prizes, and volunteer rewards. Have you ever participated in a SORBA bike raffle? Did you win the Turner frame from OMBA? Have you enjoyed a Mystery Adventure Ride, and had your turn at the prize table? Did you take home a certificate from Moots or Thomson? Did you score a great Selle Italia saddle at a silent auction? Did you receive a set of Maxxis tires at a race? Have you come home from a work party, tired and dirty, with a bottle of Prolink or a Park multitool as gesture of appreciation for your efforts? These products come to you as a direct result of our work at Interbike.
In return, our sponsors generate goodwill, and they can earn your loyalty and support. You know from first-hand exerpience that Prolink is a quality lube or Maxxis makes great tires. When your free bottle runs out, or those tires wear thin, you'll buy another, and you'll tell your friends about it. People buy based on personal referrals, and swag helps generate referrals, which can turn into sales. It's a win-win situation for sponsors and members.
SORBA appreciates your hard work and dedication to mountain biking advocacy, and we ask the industry to recognize all that you do. Fortunately, many in the industry "get it." We thank them for their appreciation and support, and Interbike is the best forum for us to do that personally. Trade shows are hard work for all involved, but we're glad for the opportunities that Interbike affords us.