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Chains Bailey 11-27-2019 05:43 PM

Leverage
 
Leverage

- power or ability to act effectively or to influence people.

- to exert power or influence on.



For all the time I have been around the game of disc golf, I have never thought any player would put themselves in a position of power over/equal to the disc manufacturers. I did not even believe that a players name on a disc moved the needle on on sales to a great degree.

I was wrong on both accounts.


The question I pose is which player/players do you believe have enough leverage to demand/command a certain level of sponsorship or they will simply go to another sponsor?

Not simply which players are worth the investment from the various sponsors, but which can dictate the negotiations to a high degree in their own personal interests.


I have come to the conclusion that only one has ever had this power and it is Paul McBeth.

PPierce is close, IMO, but not quite there yet. Her sales are hot right now, so we will see if she proves me wrong.

I was thinking maybe Ken Climo, but at that time in the game, I do not believe that there was enough money moving, awareness and participation compared to todays numbers. Add to that, the media exposure of present day and I think the disc companies during that time wanted him for sure, but I do not think he could walk into any manufacturer and say "I want X Y and Z or I am going to another manufacturer'" and have it hold any real weight.

I realize that many players can create an immediate spike in sales, many are loved and have loyal / longtime fans and many are household names in our small neighborhood....but to have leverage OVER the company who is sponsoring you is unheard of, IMO.

Paul McBeth is the only player to have that leverage in the history of our sport.

Change my mind.














Just kidding.....

Anyone have any others that they think hold this much power?


NOTE: Not a FanBoy' - James Conrad is who I pull for, VIRGINIA baby! I know....Paul lives in VA, but he is a California guy at his roots. Just find it interesting that the player/sponsor dichotomy has done a complete 180 in terms of at least one player.

GoobyPls 11-27-2019 05:53 PM

Lloyd Weema. The man single-handedly changed the rules for the biggest competitions in the sport.

That's leverage.

Chains Bailey 11-27-2019 05:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by GoobyPls (Post 3524604)
Lloyd Weema. The man single-handedly changed the rules for the biggest competitions in the sport.

That's leverage.

Damn, forgot him! And I am the president of his fan club. Hope he does not read this thread.


Also, I think I made a horrible mistake in posting a thread that includes the names Paul McBeth and Ken Climo in close proximity--- posters, please do not drift this thread into a GOAT' debate. I will happily take BBQ and Pizza over that debate.

jakebake91 11-27-2019 06:30 PM

Hmmmm. Great question. What about maybe a guy like Seppo? He seems pretty important to Prodigy. Otherwise, I got nothing. Sexton? IDK why he'd walk away from the sexybird deal, but I'd imagine Innova wouldn't want him walking. But, they also let Paul go, so I don't think any Innova players are in this discussion.

So, my vote would be Seppo or Simon. Neither seem likely at all, but they might be able grasp some leverage.

Chains Bailey 11-27-2019 06:45 PM

I should add that there were far fewer disc manufacturers in the days of KC, so not as many companies to compete with for those disc golfer dollars. Therefore, a big time player may not hold as much value in the overall sales scheme. Plus, lack of social media relegated even the top players to a level of obscurity even low level pros now would shudder at.

Countchunkula 11-27-2019 06:48 PM

Shouldn't the player with the longest levers have the most leverage?:|

Cgkdisc 11-27-2019 06:57 PM

Only the person or persons who combined have controlling interest in a business or person(s) who personally own the patent that's core to the business truly have controlling leverage. Paul and any others could negotiate a deal only up to their fair portion of the cost of goods or services sold as determined by the controlling business owners or their proxy director. That's why incentives related to future sales make the most sense to balance the potential income generating value of a top player with appropriate expense management for the company.

elmexdela 11-27-2019 07:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cgkdisc (Post 3524631)
Only the person or persons who combined have controlling interest in a business or person(s) who personally own the patent that's core to the business truly have controlling leverage. Paul and any others could negotiate a deal only up to their fair portion of the cost of goods or services sold as determined by the controlling business owners or their proxy director. That's why incentives related to future sales make the most sense to balance the potential income generating value of a top player with appropriate expense management for the company.

can you put this into words so the rest of us without an mba can understand

Hampstead 11-27-2019 07:20 PM

If Eagle can get his mental game tightened up, maintain his social media presence and somehow manage to win Worlds or USDGC, he's young enough that I could see him having some leverage within the next few years.

Chains Bailey 11-27-2019 08:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cgkdisc (Post 3524631)
Only the person or persons who combined have controlling interest in a business or person(s) who personally own the patent that's core to the business truly have controlling leverage. Paul and any others could negotiate a deal only up to their fair portion of the cost of goods or services sold as determined by the controlling business owners or their proxy director. That's why incentives related to future sales make the most sense to balance the potential income generating value of a top player with appropriate expense management for the company.

Agreed to a point - I think.

I believe you are referring to an extreme place on the spectrum of business. Or put more simply, you are pointing out that the maker of the hammer can ultimately take away the hammer from the great carpenters if they wish.

IF my understanding of your highbrow words is correct, then I think your point is valid, but not option ending for the player. As the patent (Hammer) is shared among many companies, ONE of the companies taking it away does not stop the player (Carpenter) from just going to another company.

Muddyboots 11-28-2019 07:29 AM

My understanding is that Prodigy is player owned, to some extent. So those folks def have leverage, even if it is a slightly different avenue. I actually respect that model, even if it is just a different carrot/incentive.

DiscFifty 11-30-2019 09:58 AM

We live in a world where the 18-30 year old is or will be the majority soon enough. (Yes, there's a reason for all the peeps running for potus telling us about all the free stuff you will get if you vote for them. lol..) So to get that leverage, the player has to be young enough to attract the younger crowd. Paul and Paige are still young enough, but I think they both understand that they are almost 30 and the time is...NOW. With that said...

I always thought Simon would be the guy with the most leverage. But it appears he's just happy being Simon, making enough to have bills paid while not putting the spotlight and pressure on himself to be the next Paul. I don't think he wants to be that guy by any means.

Eagle, imop has tried "everything" to become a social media influencer/star. I think he has the best chance to be the next Paul but he's going to have to "stabilize" his overall persona, like Paul has done, so people can get used to him which is important for long term branding imop. One he matures a bit more....mentally...I think the future of disc golf is in his hands and he will be able to write his own ticket.

Nikko - man..talk about a missed opportunity. He was right there with Paul the entire time. But due to image instability, immaturity on the course, etc, he became the guy we didn't mind watching, but certainly never wanted to be like. I think he also realizes "now's the time!! " so he seems to have mellowed out a bit, has a new sponsorship, etc. Will be interesting to see how 2020 plays out for him. Like I said before.. dude has the look for marketing. I could see a line of clothes before a line of discs with his name on it.

elmexdela 11-30-2019 10:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DiscFifty (Post 3525109)
We live in a world where the 18-30 year old is or will be the majority soon enough. (Yes, there's a reason for all the peeps running for potus telling us about all the free stuff you will get if you vote for them. lol..) So to get that leverage, the player has to be young enough to attract the younger crowd. Paul and Paige are still young enough, but I think they both understand that they are almost 30 and the time is...NOW. With that said...

I always thought Simon would be the guy with the most leverage. But it appears he's just happy being Simon, making enough to have bills paid while not putting the spotlight and pressure on himself to be the next Paul. I don't think he wants to be that guy by any means.

Eagle, imop has tried "everything" to become a social media influencer/star. I think he has the best chance to be the next Paul but he's going to have to "stabilize" his overall persona, like Paul has done, so people can get used to him which is important for long term branding imop. One he matures a bit more....mentally...I think the future of disc golf is in his hands and he will be able to write his own ticket.

Nikko - man..talk about a missed opportunity. He was right there with Paul the entire time. But due to image instability, immaturity on the course, etc, he became the guy we didn't mind watching, but certainly never wanted to be like. I think he also realizes "now's the time!! " so he seems to have mellowed out a bit, has a new sponsorship, etc. Will be interesting to see how 2020 plays out for him. Like I said before.. dude has the look for marketing. I could see a line of clothes before a line of discs with his name on it.

nikko is the most entertaining person to watch however i do not want to play like nikko on the course

i do appreciate nikko showing human emotions where as a lot of athletes try to keep this stoic front which seems to take away from the human experience

Chains Bailey 12-01-2019 05:12 PM

Eagle, Nikko and Simon are definitely big time, but still do not hold the level of leverage that PMcBeth does.

The ability to dictate terms to a very high degree, and or over, a sponsor.

I still only see one.

Cgkdisc 12-01-2019 05:17 PM

No top player in any sport can dictate, just simply request. Some can request and get more than others. The economics of the sport and the companies supporting it determine the maximum request that can be granted without over-reaching and risking financial failure.

Chains Bailey 12-01-2019 05:47 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cgkdisc (Post 3525475)
No top player in any sport can dictate, just simply request. Some can request and get more than others. The economics of the sport and the companies supporting it determine the maximum request that can be granted without over-reaching and risking financial failure.

True - the players can only request and there are common sense limits on what they can request. We have to assume that the players are aware of the basic ceiling available and would not request in an ignorant fashion.

I would say I am looking at the ability to request in favor of the player themselves to an extreme degree, bordering on the appearance of dictating terms. I am not ready to let go of the term dictating just yet, I am sure you may convince me otherwise.

If players A, B and C walk into a sponsor and demand X,Y and Z, I only see one player having their demands met. Add that the demands heavily favor the player, create an immediate large financial loss for the sponsor and are uncharted territory in the sport.

Maybe there is an argument that a player with PMcBeth's leverage could dictate terms with smaller companies? What do you think Cgkdisc?

Chains Bailey 12-01-2019 06:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cgkdisc (Post 3525475)
No top player in any sport can dictate, just simply request. Some can request and get more than others. The economics of the sport and the companies supporting it determine the maximum request that can be granted without over-reaching and risking financial failure.

HA!

You are wrong buddy...

dictate
[dictate]
say or read aloud (words to be typed, written down, or recorded on tape)

ANY player could dictate terms - I win!

Definition number two comes to the rescue.

Cgkdisc 12-01-2019 06:36 PM

We agree that some players have more leverage than others. McBeth likely has more than any player currently with manufacturers whose core or major marketing plan relies on high profile players to move product. But your premise was that McBeth may have sufficient leverage to essentially force a better deal than is financially sound for the manufacturer. A firm on shakier financial ground might go for it and maybe they should include ownership shares as part of the deal so the player bears sufficient risk in making the deal work. A well managed firm should know their numbers well enough to have an idea what they can risk or afford. It's not always a specific dollar cap but more of a combination of guaranteed money along with a percentage of sales the player generates into the future.

Chains Bailey 12-01-2019 06:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cgkdisc (Post 3525486)
But your premise was that McBeth may have sufficient leverage to essentially force a better deal than is financially sound for the manufacturer.

This.

I think the risk taken by Discraft does constitute "a better deal than is financially sound for the manufacturer".

I am sure they have an idea of what might happen, but I would argue they do not know for sure, therefore the leverage PMcBeth held was over the company's immediate best interests. I realize that there is short-term verse long-term interests, but I still think only one player can demand terms and have them met.

If his demands are not met, he can find another company willing to meet them - that equals leverage over a sponsor to me.

I could be wrong or looking at things in too simple of terms, but for this discussion maybe the less nuanced is best suited.


I agree that dictate is too strong of a word - I think demand may be a better fit in the context of my premise.

hiflyer 12-01-2019 11:00 PM

I believe the word we are looking for is "clout"
According to the Google search

2. INFORMAL
influence or power, especially in politics or business.
"I knew he carried a lot of clout"

Chains Bailey 12-02-2019 10:21 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by hiflyer (Post 3525525)
I believe the word we are looking for is "clout"
According to the Google search

2. INFORMAL
influence or power, especially in politics or business.
"I knew he carried a lot of clout"

Although, I do not have enough clout to leverage my position in a dictatorial fashion...

I DEMAND we stick with DEMAND!

Shamis 12-02-2019 12:52 PM

I think Simon Lizotte has as much power as Mcbeth, if not more. Lizotte is very marketable. He throws exciting shots. He's got charisma, and he throws very far. All those things are great for marketing. Mcbeth is just the best player.

biscoe 12-02-2019 01:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Shamis (Post 3525654)
I think Simon Lizotte has as much power as Mcbeth, if not more. Lizotte is very marketable. He throws exciting shots. He's got charisma, and he throws very far. All those things are great for marketing. Mcbeth is just the best player.

McBeth is more savvy about building his brand than any other disc golfer has ever been...and he's the best player.

Chains Bailey 12-02-2019 01:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Shamis (Post 3525654)
I think Simon Lizotte has as much power as Mcbeth, if not more. Lizotte is very marketable. He throws exciting shots. He's got charisma, and he throws very far. All those things are great for marketing. Mcbeth is just the best player.

Simon is very marketable, but does not remotely move product near the level PMcBeth does. Also, I would venture a guess that Simon does not make 1/35th of what PMcBeth does after all is added up at years end.

Orioles_Lefty 12-02-2019 03:22 PM

It’s hard to tell because of how the different companies operate. I don’t think anyone on team Innova will ever be bigger than Innova. DD announced its lack of willingness to shift branding/operations/vision w/how they handled PP. Prodigy, though worker owned, feels more like a brand collective to me than “clout” for one player. Discmania does not have a big enough United States footprint. This is to say it’s hard to test one’s clout within current operations. Could Sexton do better than being the Firebird man? The two players who had clout leveraged their clout but only because Discraft was willing to take risks. It’s one stop shopping at this point, and no one can make Discraft do anything or force the hand of other manufacturers.

The wild cards are Nikko with Westside and Drew with Infinite. I wish The Upshot guys would have asked Nikko how he made sense of Westside’s joint ownership in relation to his own vision. Were I DD and partners, I’d let Nikko go hog wild with crazy Westside ideas. It’s an orphan company of sorts, so Nikko makes sense. I’m not sure what to make of Drew’s situation. Neither of them have clout, but they both have opportunities to change the market in meaningful ways.

The next players with clout are likely not fully on our radar at the moment, I’d suggest.

Orioles_Lefty 12-02-2019 03:25 PM

The shorter answer is the next person to win two world championships not named Paul or Paige given they already have a social media presence.

Chains Bailey 12-05-2019 10:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Orioles_Lefty (Post 3525703)
The shorter answer is the next person to win two world championships not named Paul or Paige given they already have a social media presence.

This is just absurd. You could not name one player, who if they won worlds next year, could pull off a $250,000 annual deal - add that the deal is guaranteed for another three years at $250,000 and the discussion is basically over.

$250,000 is the BASE, as far as I understand. I would love to know if ANY other players have even topped the $30K to 50K BASE pay mark. I doubt it. PP would be my guess to be another player that has a high BASE pay, but I would think it is lower than $30K and based much more on performance and specific disc sales.

Someone that is super popular and a greatly skilled player (As well as my favorite player - James Conrad) was concerned with just paying his van off by the end of the year in 2019. At that level and the fact that the van was not bought FOR him should give an idea of what the "TOP" players are being afforded.

I do not think most people realize the extraordinary separation of PMcBeth's BASE pay + annual earnings over everyone else.

I would guess that he makes the equivalent, if not more than, entire manufacturer teams combined, when just looking at sponsor contracts. I would also guess that the very top players could add their BASE pay and ALL other income from the entire year and none would reach the $250,000 mark.

Orioles_Lefty 12-06-2019 08:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Chains Bailey (Post 3526891)
This is just absurd. You could not name one player, who if they won worlds next year, could pull off a $250,000 annual deal - add that the deal is guaranteed for another three years at $250,000 and the discussion is basically over.

$250,000 is the BASE, as far as I understand. I would love to know if ANY other players have even topped the $30K to 50K BASE pay mark. I doubt it. PP would be my guess to be another player that has a high BASE pay, but I would think it is lower than $30K and based much more on performance and specific disc sales.

Someone that is super popular and a greatly skilled player (As well as my favorite player - James Conrad) was concerned with just paying his van off by the end of the year in 2019. At that level and the fact that the van was not bought FOR him should give an idea of what the "TOP" players are being afforded.

I do not think most people realize the extraordinary separation of PMcBeth's BASE pay + annual earnings over everyone else.

I would guess that he makes the equivalent, if not more than, entire manufacturer teams combined, when just looking at sponsor contracts. I would also guess that the very top players could add their BASE pay and ALL other income from the entire year and none would reach the $250,000 mark.

Your passionate response pretty much ignores the criteria I established.

JuanA 12-06-2019 09:32 AM

I don't think it needs to be a current DG player. The word clout has been tossed out there, and I agree.

What would happen if someone like Brodie decided to give disc golf a serious try, and bring his 2.2 million YouTube subscribers with him? I love watching Paul play, but does he have the audience to compete with Brodie? At 24K subscribers, he's not even in the same ballpark. All the current DG pros combined can't match Brodie's exposure.

This business is about money, and what company would turn down 2.2 million viewers?

jakebake91 12-06-2019 10:36 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JuanA (Post 3526970)
I don't think it needs to be a current DG player. The word clout has been tossed out there, and I agree.

What would happen if someone like Brodie decided to give disc golf a serious try, and bring his 2.2 million YouTube subscribers with him? I love watching Paul play, but does he have the audience to compete with Brodie? At 24K subscribers, he's not even in the same ballpark. All the current DG pros combined can't match Brodie's exposure.

This business is about money, and what company would turn down 2.2 million viewers?

Do you think a guy like Brodie would give up everything he has, work hard to become a touring pro, and actually complete with guys that have been disc golfing at a high level for a very long time? I know that guy is super talented and all, but do you think he could get to a point where he is competing at a high level? And if he's not competing at a high level, you think he deserves a sponsorship just because he brings YouTube followers with him? There are lots of internet famous people out there, should we sponsor all of them?

JuanA 12-06-2019 11:07 AM

Would a guy like Brodie turn down a $1M+ contract if it was offered to him to promote a brand?

He could finish dead last in every tournament he entered, and still be the most known player out there.

I'm not a big Brodie fan, but numbers are numbers. He has them.

Chains Bailey 12-06-2019 04:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Orioles_Lefty (Post 3526955)
Your passionate response pretty much ignores the criteria I established.

No - I read it. Same response.

Chains Bailey 12-06-2019 04:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JuanA (Post 3526970)
I don't think it needs to be a current DG player. The word clout has been tossed out there, and I agree.

What would happen if someone like Brodie decided to give disc golf a serious try, and bring his 2.2 million YouTube subscribers with him? I love watching Paul play, but does he have the audience to compete with Brodie? At 24K subscribers, he's not even in the same ballpark. All the current DG pros combined can't match Brodie's exposure.

This business is about money, and what company would turn down 2.2 million viewers?

This is interesting. A person with limited disc golf skill, but could make a company a lot of money.

Now, a person walking into any manufacturer with 2.2 million viewers would definitely have leverage when negotiating.

Wonder if Brodie and PMcBeth both walked in at the same time and asked for he same sponsor contract, who would they go with?

*Not a Brodie fan - like fingernails on a chalkboard.

jakebake91 12-06-2019 04:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JuanA (Post 3526998)
Would a guy like Brodie turn down a $1M+ contract if it was offered to him to promote a brand?

He could finish dead last in every tournament he entered, and still be the most known player out there.

I'm not a big Brodie fan, but numbers are numbers. He has them.

My question tho is why would a dg company give that kind of contract to a guy who might finish dead last? How does that showcase their products? That doesn't make business sense. What percentage of his followers are going to go buy company x discs because they sponsored him? Betcha it's not worth the investment

jakebake91 12-06-2019 04:45 PM

If popularity was all that mattered, Michael Jordan should have made millions playing baseball, right?

JuanA 12-06-2019 04:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jakebake91 (Post 3527149)
My question tho is why would a dg company give that kind of contract to a guy who might finish dead last? How does that showcase their products? That doesn't make business sense. What percentage of his followers are going to go buy company x discs because they sponsored him? Betcha it's not worth the investment

Good points, but consider:

Dale Earnhardt Jr. never won a Championship at NASCAR's highest level during his entire career, and has a net worth of $400M.

During Jr.'s career Jimmie Johnson won 7 Championships and is worth $120M.

Why?

Because during Johnson's career, Jr. was ranked the most popular driver for 15 years straight.

I'm sure there are marketing people on this forum that can explain it better than me, but I don't think Championships mean that much to the average consumer anymore. We live in a social media age.

I still don't understand the Kardashians, but we all know who they are.

JuanA 12-06-2019 04:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jakebake91 (Post 3527152)
If popularity was all that mattered, Michael Jordan should have made millions playing baseball, right?

But he made millions endorsing products. That's all a sponsorship is really.

Chains Bailey 12-06-2019 04:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jakebake91 (Post 3527149)
My question tho is why would a dg company give that kind of contract to a guy who might finish dead last? How does that showcase their products? That doesn't make business sense. What percentage of his followers are going to go buy company x discs because they sponsored him? Betcha it's not worth the investment

I have the same questions and this would be a first in our sport.

I do not know enough about mass numbers of viewers turning into $ to take a guess, but it is interesting.

In the same vein, wonder if a company putting a very reasonable investment in the "Underdog", think LLoyd Weema, would pay off?

Hypothetical - Pay Lloyd's entry fees and lodging for 15 of the largest events = $5000ish' - could they sell over that in signature Weema' plastic?

I guess it is a risk - sponsoring Weema may backfire and be seen as diminishing the "Quality" of that brand or people may see the FUN in the idea and jump on board. Maybe the same applies to the risk of signing a person like Brodie.

jakebake91 12-06-2019 05:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JuanA (Post 3527153)
Good points, but consider:

Dale Earnhardt Jr. never won a Championship at NASCAR's highest level during his entire career, and has a net worth of $400M.

During Jr.'s career Jimmie Johnson won 7 Championships and is worth $120M.

Why?

Because during Johnson's career, Jr. was ranked the most popular driver for 15 years straight.

I'm sure there are marketing people on this forum that can explain it better than me, but I don't think Championships mean that much to the average consumer anymore. We live in a social media age.

I still don't understand the Kardashians, but we all know who they are.

If Dale Jrs daddy was anybody else, he wouldn't have made a 1/4 of that. He was so highly over rated as an actual driver. This is what drove a lot of his endorsement deals that netted him so much. I was a huge NASCAR fan during that time.

jakebake91 12-06-2019 05:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JuanA (Post 3527154)
But he made millions endorsing products. That's all a sponsorship is really.

Yes, but not from the team he played for. Which is what we are talking about. He wasn't good enough to compete at the highest level, therefore, had no place in baseball.


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