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How Athletes Can Use Social Media to Build Their Personal Brand
In this blog post, we will be covering some of the top advice you should be looking at if you are serious about growing them and sharing your journey alongside your audience. These bits of advice will all apply to young athletes who are going into college and are about to be given the opportunity to pursue their passion for their sports and hopefully turn it into a professional career.
Choose the right social media platforms
The question you want to be asking yourself is what type of content you want to create. Are you interested in sharing long-form content such as Q&As, and training routines on platforms such as Youtube or are you more into the short-form content that is more snappy, quick paced, and will catch your audience’s attention quicker?
Long-form content will sit more naturally on Youtube, Facebook, and Instagram TV whereas shorter-form content is more usually seen on TikTok, Instagram Stories/Reels, and even Twitter.
There is no right or wrong in choosing either type of content and there is not one size fits all when it comes to choosing the platforms as we commonly see athletes and content creators using a mix of both mediums to cover all platforms and share a diversity of content.
One of the most important things when it comes to growing your social media platforms is consistency. Due to the nature of social media being fast-paced, content can easily become obsolete and completely missed. Therefore it is important to get on the right side of the algorithm and make sure your audience sees your content as soon as they open their platforms. Aim for at least one post per day, but don't overdo it - quality over quantity is important.
Consistency is also in the messaging and aesthetics. You need to find a clear visual cue and brand that your audience will start recognizing whenever they see your content. The aesthetics of the content can be as simple as using your team’s colorway or creating a logo.
To make your life easier and help you with the consistency of posting without having to manually upload posts every day there are now tools you can use that will support you in making sure you are not falling behind regularly posting and you can still focus on your training itself.
A few platforms we would recommend to help with the scheduling are:
Your followers want to see the real you, so don't be afraid to share your personality and experiences. Share your thoughts, emotions, and behind-the-scenes glimpses of your life as an athlete.
Don’t forget to use hashtags: Hashtags are a great way to reach a wider audience and increase your visibility. Use relevant hashtags that are popular within your industry, and create your own branded hashtags to promote your personal brand.
Share your training routine: Your followers are interested in how you train and stay in shape. Share your workouts and training tips, and give your fans an inside look at what it takes to be an athlete.
Showcase your achievements: Share your accomplishments on and off the field, including awards, personal bests, and charity work. This helps to build your personal brand and shows your followers your commitment to your sport and your community.
Engage with your followers and build a community
Respond to comments and direct messages, and show appreciation for your followers' support. Engaging with your audience builds loyalty and strengthens your relationship with them.
Take advantage of the tools you are offered on Instagram stories such as polls, question boxes, and Instagram Live, and always spend 15-20 min a day to make sure all your DMs, comments, and any other emails/requests have been answered.
Follow and engage regularly with brands and athletes that are in a similar field as this will also help grow your profile and presence online.
Use social media to network and build relationships with sponsors and industry professionals
Collaborating with other athletes or brands can help to expand your reach and introduce you to new audiences. Partner with brands or athletes that align with your values and personal brand.
Remember, focus on the brands that align with your values and prioritize longer brand partnerships or ambassador deals as this will show your followers your loyalty and the real brand journey you have embarked on. For example, work with a sportswear brand that will sponsor you with all your clothing down to shoes and any accessories.
Also consider partnering with brands that are not necessarily directly linked to the sports industry for example fin-tech brands as these will also help your audience be educated on how to manage their money, savings, investments etc.
Remember, social media is a powerful tool that can help you build your personal brand and connect with your fans. Use it wisely and strategically, and always stay true to yourself.