Sports Agents

Expanding Your Client List

Over on the Forum, there is a fairly recent thread that has been left unanswered thus far. To paraphrase the question, SportsAgentGuy asks how a smaller agency would they go about getting clients considering the heavy obstacles in signing a veteran athlete and little experience. It seems like an easy question, but is almost impossible to answer. Very few people have been able to take the nontraditional route of starting their own agency before working for somebody else in this industry. Glen Lansky wants none of that statement.

Glen’s company, Elite Sports Agency, was founded in 2005 and claims to be one of the fastest growing athletic sports agencies. With a little bit less than 20 listed football players as clients in that limited time, I cannot argue with Glen. But what was Glen’s tactic to establishing his agency from the ground up? First of all, he gained his first client, Terrance Royal, by promising to be a friend for life. Lansky’s does not pretend to represent any all-star caliber athletes, but that is part of the process of starting up your own company from scratch without taking along former clients that you represented at a major conglomerate after leaving. Glen goes after local kids, with local ties. Locality can play a major role in trying to sell your services when experience is not on your side.

Again, there is no correct universal answer to the question of how a smaller agency should go about getting clients considering the obstacles inherent in the industry. Find your strong points. What will you provide that cannot be offered by an IMG or a CAA. Sometimes it is just about going after players that the larger companies are not interested in and hoping one of them breaks out and has a successful career. That is part of what Greg does, but he also makes sure to bust his ass every day in order to do his very best for the clients that allows him to pursue his dream of being a sports agent.

By Darren Heitner

Darren Heitner created Sports Agent Blog as a New Year's Resolution on December 31, 2005. Originally titled, "I Want To Be A Sports Agent," the website was founded with the intention of causing Heitner to learn more about the profession that he wanted to join, meet reputable individuals in the space and force himself to stay on top of the latest news and trends.

Heitner now runs Heitner Legal, P.L.L.C., which is a law firm with many practice areas, including sports law and contract law. Heitner has represented numerous athletes and sports agents as legal counsel. He has also served as an Adjunct Professor at Indiana University Bloomington from 2011-2014, where he created and taught a course titled, Sport Agency Management, which included subjects ranging from NCAA regulations to athlete agent certification and the rules governing the profession. Heitner serves as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Florida Levin College of Law, where he teaches a Sports Law class that includes case law surrounding athlete agents and the NCAA rules.