By my account, today marks 33 days left until the IZOD IndyCar Series roars to life at the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. That seems like a long time, especially when you're a fan waiting out the offseason purgatory. When I was young and would complain about about being bored, my Mom would say, "You'd better find something to do before I find something for you".
OK, Mom, fine. I came up with 33 Days, 33 Sponsors.
Here's my challenge to IndyCar fans out there, one that I hope you'll join me in doing. Take 5-10 minutes each day between now and the start of the IZOD IndyCar Series season to thank a team or Series sponsor for what they do, via letter, email, or other form of customer feedback. I'm not talking about just a tweet to the company, but at least a paragraph or two of well-reasoned, informative fan opinion. That's 33 sponsors and prospective sponsors contacted, times however many fans choose to take the time to express their support.
Not sure what to do or where to start? Here's a couple of ideas:
1) Thank a current INDYCAR or INDYCAR team sponsor for their sponsorship and support. Have you bought something there recently? If so, scan or take a pic of the receipt to show you put your money where your mouth is in terms of support.
2) Is there a company that you'd like to see as a first-time sponsor or perhaps return to the series? Find their contact info and let them know!
3) Don't forget, there are sponsor for series such as Firestone Indy Lights, Star Mazda Championship, and Cooper Tires USF2000, as well, and they're important to the health of INDYCAR, as well! Take a moment to check out those series' and teams' sponsors, too.
Remember, make those emails, letters, etc., polite and courteous. Hostility and nastiness doesn't do much, except perhaps make people tune out.
Need sponsor lists and/or contact info? You can check out the INDYCAR sponsor page, as well as this excellent resource. Don't forget The IndyCar Fans on Twitter or Facebook, who are doing great work along these lines.
It's true that sponsorship needs to make financial sense for the companies involved, but don't discount passion and positive feedback in the process. We're all going stir crazy waiting for the IZOD IndyCar Series to start, but let's fire up those keyboards, get out the stationery, and do something productive while we wait. It's easier than doing a diet for that period, which means it's the sort of activity that still goes great with bacon (Oh, great idea! Hey! Someone see if Oscar Mayer wants to get in on some IndyCar action!).
So, there it is. 33 days, 33 letters or emails to companies in support of INDYCAR and the IZOD IndyCar series. I plan to keep track of what I do along the way, and I'd also love to hear from you (mail.rpgblog(at)gmail.com) as we go about this. Best of luck, and have at it!