“Athlete Brands” helps high school and college athletes optimize their brand

Published: Oct. 20, 2022 at 10:45 AM EDT
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - A book co-written by a professor with the University of Virginia aims to help student-athletes through the NIL (name, image, likeness) process.

“The school was being approached by a number of different organizations and agencies that want to take advantage of NIL, and to quote, ‘Help the school and athletes,’” Prof. Kim Whitler said.

“I think it’s easy to get it right, but it’s also easy to get it wrong” Rebecca Jarrett with the UVA Women’s Soccer Team said.

Whitler and Jay Hodgkins wrote “Athlete Brands” to help guide student-athletes to make money off their brand. The professor says they spent five months analyzing the most valuable brands.

“We went and we looked at the top brands and identified who they had aligned with from a student-athlete perspective,” Whitler said.

She says the most common mistake student-athletes make is targeting the wrong audience.

“If we can help student-athletes make that shift from using social media to communicate with peers to using it as an ad to promote their brand, then the images need to shift accordingly,” the professor said.

“I think there’s definitely a delicate balance between showing who you are and what you do outside of playing the sport that you play, but also highlight what you are: A student-athlete. You take that seriously,” Jarrett said.

If you would like to order Athlete Brands, click here.

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