So you want to start a sports agency. Maybe you’re a former athlete who knows the ins and outs of the industry, or perhaps you’re just a sports fan who’s always dreamed of representing your favorite players. No matter how you do it, starting your own sports agency involves a lot of steps, from finding representation for athletes to figuring out what legal structure is best to filing all the necessary paperwork with the government.
To make it easier on yourself, we put together this guide on how to start your own sports agency from scratch so that you can get started as soon as possible!
Choose the right name
The most important part of starting a sports agency is choosing the right name. The name should be catchy, but also professional. Avoid any inside jokes or references that only you and your friends would get – you want potential clients to be able to take your business seriously.
Your agency’s name will be its first impression, so make sure it’s a good one!
Register as an LLC
Registering your business as an LLC has a few benefits. For one, it can help protect your personal assets if your business is sued. Plus, it can make tax time a little easier and may even help you get funding from investors.
First, open up your state’s website and search for LLC registration or starting an LLC. The form must be filled out with the required information. In most states, the form will include details about fees for filing, addresses of public officials who should receive copies of the documents filed with them (usually listed as Registered Agent), information about authorized representatives, whether members are natural persons or other entities (such as corporations), names of directors or managers if there are any named officers and names of members. Be sure to fill out all fields before submitting!
You’ll be asked for your email address at some point during this process; give a professional-sounding email address that won’t cause confusion if someone wants to contact you about something related to your company in the future.
Create a strong business plan
A sports agency is a business representing athletes and coaches in negotiating their contracts with teams. If you’re thinking about starting a sports agency, the first step is to create a strong business plan.
Here are seven tips to get you started:
- Do your research. Learn about the industry, the competition, and potential clients. This will help you create a realistic business plan.
- Create a niche. What makes your sports agency unique? What type of athletes do you want to represent?
- Develop relationships. Get to know the people in the industry, including agents, coaches, and scouts. To succeed, you will need these relationships.
- Build a team. Hire knowledgeable staff who share your values and vision for the company.
- Network! Join industry associations, attend conferences, and seek out mentors who can provide valuable insight into what it takes to succeed in this competitive field.
- Determine a pricing model. Is your agency going to charge an hourly rate or offer commissions on every contract negotiated? And how much are you going to charge for these services?
- Establish long-term goals for the company.
- Create a budget. Make sure you have enough funds available to carry out your plans. You might need cash reserves, credit lines, loans from family members or investors, or grants from foundations and government agencies.
- Seek guidance from an attorney on all legal issues related to setting up a sports agency (i.e., labor law).
- Seek guidance from an accountant on all financial matters related to running a sports agency (i.e., income taxes).
Once you’ve created a solid business plan, you’re ready to take your idea for a sports agency from concept to reality. You may need to raise capital, hire employees, and find clients to launch.
Market yourself online
In order to get started, you first need to market yourself online. You can do this by creating a website and/or blog and writing articles about the sports industry. You should also create social media accounts on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
Be sure to include your contact information on all of your online platforms. You can also attend sports-related events and meet-ups to network with potential clients.
Hire support staff
You can’t do everything yourself, so it’s essential to hire a great support staff. Look for people with experience in the sports industry and who are passionate about what they do. Additionally, make sure your staff is organized and detail oriented. They should be able to handle the day-to-day tasks of the business so you can focus on the big picture.
Determine player compensation package
The first step is to determine what kind of compensation package you can offer your players. This will depend on a number of factors, including your budget, the player’s experience, and the type of contract you’re offering. An experienced athlete might be willing to work for free or at a lower rate to get their foot in the door with an agency.
Conversely, an agency may choose not to sign athletes who are looking for higher rates if they don’t have enough money in their budget. Once you’ve determined this factor, it’s time to decide which contracts are suitable for your company.
Use search engines to find athletes
Now that you have a general idea of what it takes to start a sports agency, it’s time to start looking for athletes to represent. The best way to find potential clients is to use search engines like Google and Bing. You can also look on social media platforms like Twitter and Instagram.
Once you’ve found a few athletes who you think would be a good fit for your agency, reach out to them and see if they’re interested in working with you.
Ask friends if they know any agents
The first step is to get your name out there. Ask your friends if they know of any agents or if they have any connections in the industry. If you don’t know anyone, look up sports agencies in your area and see if you can set up a meeting.
It’s important to start building relationships as soon as possible. Even if you’re not looking for an agent right now, that could change at any time. You’ll want to be able to call someone when it does happen.
Network at events or conferences
Attending industry events and conferences is a great way to network with potential clients, partners, and mentors. When you’re first starting out, it’s important to get your name and face out there as much as possible. Attend as many events as you can, and make sure to introduce yourself to as many people as possible. You never know who you might meet!
Set up a meeting with potential clients
Before you can start representing athletes, you need to have a meeting with them to discuss your services. This is known as an athlete-agent orientation meeting, and it’s important to establish trust and open communication with your clients from the very beginning.
Here’s what you need to do to set up a successful orientation meeting:
- Schedule the meeting at a time that’s convenient for the athlete.
- Choose a neutral location, like a coffee shop or office space.
- Come prepared with information about your experience and qualifications.
- Be honest about what you can and cannot do for the athlete.
- Discuss your fee structure and any other terms of your representation agreement.
It’s also a good idea to get referrals from other agents in the industry before meeting with prospective clients. You might want to consider joining associations, such as the National Association of Professional Agents (NAPA) and Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA), which could provide opportunities for networking within the industry.
Before you can start signing clients and negotiating contracts, there’s a lot of work to be done. You need to get your business registered, obtain the necessary licenses, and put together a strong team of professionals. But if you’re passionate about sports and have a head for business, starting a sports agency can be an incredibly rewarding experience. You can turn your dream into reality with the right planning and execution.