Pantherstyle: Part Three
(Disclaimer: This is not professional or legal advice. If it were, the article would be followed with an invoice. Do not expect to win any social media arguments by hyperlinking my articles. Chances are, we are both wrong).
Let me level with you: these here are some notes and musings from my time coaching at West Ottawa High School. But before we go any further, let me make one thing crystal clear: I'm no longer affiliated with the program and ain't currently coaching there. Nope. Nada. Zilch.
Now, why am I sharing these pearls of wisdom with you, you ask? Well, my dear reader, it's because I want to help the wider wrestling community and see other programs flourish. These notes are a way for me to impart my hard-earned knowledge and experience, and hopefully make a difference.
But, let me be clear, these thoughts are mine and mine alone. They don't necessarily represent the views of West Ottawa High School or its brass. So take 'em or leave 'em, it's up to you. Just know that they come from a place of passion and a desire to see the sport thrive.
PROMOTING PANTHERSTYLE WRESTLING
"If I could avoid an elevator or escalator, I'd choose the stairs every time. I never looked for the parking space closest to the store; I parked in the furthest spot possible. I made the simple tasks in life as difficult as I could, so I would have no guilt about being lazy. I tried to do those little things that my opponents would overlook, which made me feel tougher, better prepared, and more deserving in my mind." - Cary Kolat
Listen, there's a whole lot of good going on in the world of wrestling, but if you keep it to yourself, it's as good as non-existent. The first problem I faced was that nobody gave a hoot about wrestling at our school. Unless you were checking out the sports column in the local rag, you didn't even know who was on the team. So, I took it upon myself to sling some positive propaganda in everyone's face and put wrestling at the tippity top of their list. I flooded the public with it, and before long, folks started to take notice - especially on the interwebs. Nowadays, athletes crave "likes" more than they do trophies, so it's all about making sure the world sees them and what they've achieved.
When you're in the business of building a program, you've got to hustle like you're selling a fine-dining experience to a bunch of jaded food critics. Coaches of "non-revenue" Olympic sports know that they've got to work twice as hard to get half the recognition, so they've got to be savvy about marketing. That means recognizing that everyone you meet is a potential fan. You've got to show up every day, put in the work, and make sure that every interaction you have is positive. It might not seem like much, but those daily interactions can add up to big things. And don't forget to bring your team along for the ride - encourage them to see the value in those interactions and to embrace the hustle. With that kind of mindset, you'll be building your brand one fan at a time.
As the head honcho of a wrestling crew, it's crucial to have a shrewd understanding of marketing and promotion. And let's face it, wrestlers are the best salespeople out there, showcasing their athleticism and skills as satisfied customers to the community. One way to boost your squad's recognition is through the use of team posters, strategically placed in high traffic areas. The internet also offers a plethora of possibilities to share team news, with social media being an especially potent tool to highlight the wrestlers of the week. If you're feeling old-school, try pitching team updates and accomplishments to the local paper, fostering support and interest in the community. Remember, building buzz and support for your program is vital to its success.
If you want your program to shine brighter than a supernova, then you need to take the reins and own the marketing game. Don't sit around waiting for your AD to do the heavy lifting - they've got their hands full juggling a million other sports and programs. It's time to put in the effort and create your own damn graphics, highlighting the jaw-dropping stats and awe-inspiring achievements of your wrestlers. This isn't a job for the faint of heart. You need to be willing to put in hours of work every week to get the word out and spread the gospel of your program.
Everything can have a positive side to it, even a loss in wrestling. Instead of focusing on the negative aspects of the game, emphasize the progress and improvements made by your wrestlers and the lessons they have learned along the way. By highlighting the positives of your program, you can craft a captivating story and generate more interest in your team. Remember that the more you promote your program and share your team's journey, the more support and attention you are likely to receive.
As a wrestling coach, it's crucial to promote your sport and engage with the school community. This means creating booster organizations and stat clubs to support your team and creating opportunities for others to learn and engage with your team. Creating a team history and displaying it in your room, program, and website can also help showcase your program's legacy and achievements. It's about building a sense of community around your team and creating a culture that inspires and motivates others to get involved. So get creative, think outside the box, and bring your wrestling program to life for everyone to see.
In the world of wrestling, building support and generating interest in your program is crucial. One effective way to achieve this is by taking a proactive approach to promoting your sport and creating opportunities for others to get involved. To make your team stand out, try developing unique team materials, like pocket schedules and team awards, and displaying them in prominent locations throughout the school. Organizing social gatherings, like movies, holiday parties, picnics, beach parties, and goal-setting dinners, is another great way to bring your team together and build a sense of community. By taking these steps, you can increase support for your program and get more people excited about the sport of wrestling.
If you're a sports organization and you ain't promoting, then you're doing it wrong. Promotions are like the gasoline that fuels the engine of marketing initiatives. They're crucial for attracting fans and building interest in your program. There's a myriad of ways to get the word out, from pumping out promotional videos and content to offering sweet giveaways for those who attend your events. Who doesn't love free stuff, right? Toss out a TV or a t-shirt, and watch the crowds come running. T-shirts are especially clutch, 'cause not only do they make killer fashion statements, but they also help spread awareness of your program. It's a win-win situation, my friends. Don't sleep on promotions, 'cause they can make or break your game. Use 'em effectively to drive attendance and build hype for your events. Your fans will thank you, and you'll be raking in the dough in no time. Trust me on this one.
In the world of American sports, data and statistics reign supreme, and this holds true for wrestling as well. To captivate fans, it's essential to highlight key stats that tell the story of your team and individual wrestlers. One way to do this is by incorporating statistics into your program, broadcasts, and promotions. By using creative giveaways that tie into these stats during home dual meets, you can encourage fans to learn more about your team and the sport as a whole.
In my program, we take stats very seriously and make sure to showcase them in social media posts regularly. By presenting the numbers behind the competition, we can help fans gain a better understanding of wrestling and appreciate the hard work and effort put in by our wrestlers.
As the coaches huddle over their home dual-meet schedules, the burning question on everyone's mind is, how do we make this shindig more interesting? It's not just about pitting wrestlers against each other, it's about crafting a spectacle that will have the fans foaming at the mouth. You need rivalries, highlight reels, and creative hooks that will appeal to your target audience.
Take the "Battle for the Bridge" series, for instance. Holland and West Ottawa programs have been locking horns for years, each trying to outdo the other with their slick moves and raw power. But what really sets this clash apart is the sledgehammer that stays with the winner, a potent symbol of their dominance over their opponent.
That's the kind of intensity and creativity that gets people talking. And when you're putting together your schedule, you need to keep your eyes on the prize - drawing in as many fans and media attention as possible. So don't be afraid to spice things up, create rivalries that run deep, and design matchups that will leave the crowd breathless. Because when it comes to the wrestling world, there's no such thing as too much excitement.
In today's world, the concept of winning at all costs has become the norm. The idea that the only thing that matters is the outcome has seeped into the culture of sports, where the emphasis on the process and quality of experience has taken a back seat. But what if I told you that there are programs that prioritize experience over victory? Enter the world of wrestling, where programs are being built around something other than just winning. Instead, they are focused on creating a memorable experience for the athletes, fans, and community. These programs understand that success is not just about the final score, but about the journey.
One way to create an unforgettable experience is through the use of a match day program. This program can include a variety of elements, such as team and individual history, scoring summaries, and information about the coaching staff. By selling ads for the program, it can pay for itself and even become a fundraiser for the program. Another way to create a memorable experience is by having a unique team picture and schedule on a poster. This can be sponsored by a business or sold to raise funds for the program. Cheerleaders can also be included in the experience, giving them the opportunity to perform live in front of a home crowd.
Other ideas include having competition day sweaters, hosting senior and alumni nights, and recognizing middle school wrestlers at matches. Displaying team banners and a lineup board in the gym can also create a sense of pride and tradition for the program. Investing in a wall mural or painting in the gym, wrestling trophy cases, and a wrestling display case can add a touch of art and history to the program. Establishing a booster club and hosting home tournaments can also generate funds and community support for the program.
Ultimately, the goal of these programs is to provide a holistic experience for the athletes, fans, and community. By prioritizing the quality of the journey over the outcome, these programs are redefining what it means to be successful in sports. So, next time you attend a wrestling match, pay attention to the details and see how the program is creating an experience beyond just winning.
PUBLICIZING IN SCHOOL
If you want your wrestling program to succeed, you need to start with the people who have the power to make it happen: the faculty. These are the men and women who influence the lives of your wrestlers every day, and gaining their support should be your top priority.
So how do you turn teachers into advocates for your program? The first step is to keep them informed about the team's progress. Talk to them about your wrestlers and make sure they know how hard your athletes are working. If you encounter any anti-athletic sentiment, address it head-on and explain the benefits of participating in sports.
But it's not just about talking to teachers - you need to show them that your program is worth supporting. Monitor your wrestlers' academic standing and offer assistance with assignments when necessary. Invite teachers to attend competitions and offer them free passes if needed. And after the event, make sure to thank them for their attendance.
To really win over the faculty, you need to convince them of their importance to your program. Consider starting an Adopt-a-Wrestler program, where a faculty member can become a personal "cheerleader" for a wrestler on the team. This could involve writing notes, wishing them luck, and inquiring about their matches.
When you encounter a problem with a wrestler who has expressed respect for a particular teacher, seek their advice. You might even request that the faculty member join a conference you have with the wrestler to provide additional support and guidance.
Other ways to engage the faculty include inviting appropriate members (such as other coaches) to speak to the team about goal-setting, positive attitude, or successful people. Ask teachers to complete an academic progress report each week for wrestlers who might be struggling with their grades or eligibility. And consider having student reporters write articles about selected wrestlers for the school newspaper.
Finally, don't forget to keep teachers in the loop throughout the season. Give them a copy of your schedule and goals at the beginning of the year, and ask that they take a moment between classes to encourage wrestlers to achieve success and reach their goals. And when the season comes to an end, make sure to congratulate teachers by giving them a copy of your award winners. By following these tips, you can build a successful wrestling program with the support of your school's faculty.
Athletics department benefits: These athletic departments, they got the goods, man. They got the threads that'll make you look like a real baller, and they ain't afraid to let you use 'em if it helps build up their brand.
Now, you might think that all coaches are square and straight-laced, but I'm telling you, there's some out there who are cool enough to hook you up with tickets to the biggest, baddest events around. We're talking home games for football and basketball, baby. That kind of action is gonna make you the envy of all your buddies and any other affiliated folks out there.
So don't sleep on this, my friends. If you want to score some serious swag and get in on the hottest sports events around, you gotta get with the program. It's all about building up that brand and living the high life. Are you ready to step up to the plate?.
Create synergy with the K-12 Program: So it goes that many programs have taken the initiative to develop free clinics and dual-meet competition opportunities for youth wrestling groups in tandem with their home events. And why not? Such promotion adds value to a segment that is directly interested in your product. By offering kids a chance to grow and display their talents, you cultivate loyalty not just from the young ones, but from their entire family - for many parents are devoted to those who invest in their children. As a coach, it's your duty to set up a powwow and scope out entities with which you can establish a relationship to bolster your program's brand.
If you're leading a team, it's not just about getting those W's on the scoreboard. No sir, it's about making sure your athletes are well-rounded individuals. That means keeping tabs on their academic progress just as much as their performance on the field. And you know who else needs to be in the loop on this? Your school administrators. Yeah, those folks in the big offices might not seem like they care about your team, but they need to know about your program's goals and how you're making progress towards them. So don't forget to keep 'em in the loop, my friends.
PUBLICIZING IN COMMUNITY
You know what they say, don't you? When a coach wins a championship, they'll invariably tell anyone who'll listen that it was a "community effort". And you know what? There's some truth to that. When you can get folks in a community to give a damn about a particular team, they'll do whatever they can to help out. That's where the coach comes in - they've got to convince parents, citizens, and anyone else who'll listen to support the wrestling program. Because when the whole town's behind you, anything's possible.
“A Little Wood Does Some Good”
In the crisp autumn air of Iowa City, Dan Gable and his band of wrestlers would venture into the wooded domain of Bob Altmaier, a generous patron of the wrestling program. Their mission: to split wood. A grueling endeavor, to be sure, but the spoils were twofold. Not only did it make for an excellent workout, but it also yielded excess wood to be shared among those vital to the wrestling program. One lucky beneficiary was the athletic director, whose support was highly prized by the wrestlers. By offering this simple gesture of gratitude, the athletes appreciated the director's backing of their sport.
This story is a potent reminder of the importance of being there for others when needed. When you offer your help, especially without being asked, people tend to remember and support you when you need it most. It's the classic "you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours" scenario, so don't forget.
As a coach, cultivating positive relationships with your wrestlers' parents is crucial. This can be achieved by being available to discuss progress and providing technical information in straightforward language. Regular communication through newsletters can keep everyone informed about team policies, events, and updates. And remember, team shirts are a form of marketing, not fundraising. Make sure as many people as possible are sporting them, whether you give them away or sell them.
Hey there, if you're looking to get some backing for your wrestling program, listen up. Here's a dozen tips to get you started:
With these tips in your back pocket, you can build a strong support system for your wrestling team. Just like Dan Gable's wrestlers, having someone in your corner can make all the difference when it counts.
Sponsorship-related benefits: So, let me get this straight: you're telling me that having a passionate student fan base can actually lead to free pizza at your big-time events? I mean, who doesn't love a good slice of Peppino's Pizza? But seriously, coaches need to start recognizing the multitude of benefits that come from engaging with their fan base and being proactive in their marketing efforts.
Think about it: when you create an electric atmosphere that truly captivates your fans, you create a platform for potential sponsors to take notice and get involved. And that's not just limited to pizza joints - we're talking about a whole host of added-value opportunities that can elevate your game to the next level.
But here's the thing: you can't just sit back and wait for the good times to roll in. You need to get creative, think outside the box, and come up with innovative strategies that will get your fans fired up and craving more. Because at the end of the day, it's not just about the giveaways or the freebies - it's about building a community of diehard supporters who will stick with you through thick and thin.
Create Added Value Through Creative Giveaways:
The wrestling aficionados of old and the up-and-coming grapplers of today are hankerin' for some spiffy threads if they're presented correctly. It's basic stuff, really - all the organizers should think about gettin' some T-shirt giveaways going at their events to drum up interest in the home meets and tourneys. But if these coaches want to stand out from the pack, they must combine some insider know-how with snazzy packaging.
Picture this: signed gear from state champs, All-Americans, and other big shots as the cherry on top of the themed packaging sundae. But wait, there's more! They could even toss in some bonus benefits like one-on-one clinics, tours of the facilities, and other neat experiences. Free camp tuition, guest coaching, personalized attention from the staff - the possibilities are endless!
Consider a "Timely" Themed Approach:
In the world of sports, it's easy to get lost in the game and forget about the bigger picture. But let me tell you, connecting your team to a larger cause can be a game-changer. It's not just about building your brand, it's about making a difference.
Take, for example, the Coaching Boys Into Men program. By partnering with this cause, we were able to not only enhance our marketing efforts, but also promote a message of respect and equality that goes beyond the mat. And let me tell you, when people are passionate about a cause, they'll show up to support it.
But let's not forget about the potential roadblocks. We've all dealt with overbearing parents who want to micromanage every aspect of their child's athletic career. It's important to have open and honest conversations with these parents, and provide them with the tools they need to support their child in a healthy and constructive way.
By defining success beyond just winning and external rewards, and emphasizing the importance of personal growth and development, we can help create a more positive and supportive environment for our young athletes. And by hosting a "Meet the Team Night" where we can share information and answer questions, we can help alleviate any concerns and foster a sense of community among all those involved.
In the end, it's not just about the sport, it's about the impact we can make both on and off the mat. And by connecting to a larger cause and tackling potential obstacles head-on, we can do just that.
That's all for now. I hope to get this all out there eventually.
Leave a Reply.
Ryan Lancaster wears many hats. Dive into his website to learn about history, sports, and more!