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Volume 20 No. 45
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Plugged In: Jason Golden, Richard Childress Racing

Last month was a big one for Jason Golden and the team he works for, Richard Childress Racing, which broke a more than three-year winless streak in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. As head of business development for the team, Golden has helped generate eight figures in business-to-business sales last year for RCR partners. Before knocking out some West Coast business meetings last month during NASCAR’s annual trip to Southern California, Golden conveyed how RCR goes about business development, and what he’d like to see more of overall from NASCAR’s sponsorship hunters.

Concept-based versus asset-based selling is really important, because the level of sophistication will be appreciated by the people on the other end of that conversation.

On RCR’s approach to driving B2B sales: We are quick to remind people that it is B2B, not “B2me.” We don’t want someone to come in and say, “Hey, I want to sell a lot more products to Caterpillar.” Well, that’s great, but what’s in it for Caterpillar; is there a benefit for them as well? So we make our folks think about and understand it’s B2B, not B2me. Kind of creating that culture from the get-go has helped people be more open to it and more willing to work with other partners to try to make it work. It’s become a really good staple of the RCR partner portfolio.

On categories RCR does well with and others it’s eyeing: Most of the race organizations take on a bit of a feeling or persona of their owner, so we’ve had a lot of success in the outdoor and commercial space: Caterpillar, Bass Pro Shops, Grainger, American Ethanol, Dow, RealTree, Daniel Defense. … And then I’d say that everybody is chasing and trying to understand the technology sector. Cloud computing and data analytics are probably the areas we’re focusing on the most. RCR and every other team has so much data and information that we can try to use, so trying to understand how best to manage the data and derive and deduce the main hypothesis of how we can get better from the data we have — that’s probably everyone’s struggle right now.

On if the NASCAR team sponsorship floodgates would open if expenses were lowered: I don’t know if I would use the term “floodgates,” but I do think it would provide us with more flexibility, allow us to have more brands experience the success. I think that’s part of the key. Some of the brands coming into the sport don’t come in writing a $10 million check; they write a $1 million check, and once they see it work, they continue to grow. So if we could make that cost of entry a little bit lower for others to understand the value, and for them to prove it out, I think it would go a long way for all teams.                                                                                                                             

                                                                                                                               — Adam Stern