How To Build Your Athlete Brand Online


Published on Social media provides amateur athletes with access to powerful tools to build their personal brands. Athletes can now leverage their own personalities beyond the team or sport they represent to build a fan base, secure sponsorship and raise funds to help them excel at their sport.

In this presentation delivered to 80 Canadian Olympic athlete, you will learn how to leverage social media to establish and manage an online personal brand, build a support system, avoid potential risks and pitfalls of social media, provide measurable value for sponsors, and prepare for life and a career after sports.

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  • \n
  • Presentation Agenda\n
  • Early on in life I was definitely defined as a “hockey player” many young Canadian’s, my goal was to make the NHL. \n\nWhile I did have some success up to my college playing days at both Iowa State and the University of Saskatchewan.\n\nUnfortunately, I have not yet won the Stanley Cup.......I say YET though....notice that I did not touch the cup in this picture\n\n
  • So, I focused on my education and came out with a Marketing degree wondering WHAT NOW?\n
  • Sales job.......was successful......but wasn’t my passion. Was a frustrated “sales person” being taught the old school way of doing business. Cold calling and closing deals!\n\nUnfortunately, I started to feel like this guy looks......always looking for the next sale. Not really building relationship.....but closin deals!\n\nI wasn’t passionate about what I was doing........something had to change\n
  • Jump ahead a few years, 3 jobs later and after owning a successful website development business. I had the opportunity to consult with the Calgary Stampeders.\n\nHelped them incorporate social media into their overall sales sales, marketing & communication strategies\n\n\n
  • From there, I decided to jump in head first and pursue a career in the sports industry.\n\nSo, I quit my job and launched a website called where we went on the road and documented the unique relationship between sports and fans and how social media was impacting this relationship.\n
  • Using tools like Twitter & Linkedin, I was able to connect with people like Tom Jolly (NY Times Sr Sports Editor), Kathleen Hessert (consultant with Shaquelle Oneil, NFL, ESPN, etc) and Brett Wilson (2009 Grey Cup Festival)\n\nTHIS WAS MY WOW MOMENT. I WAS IN CONTROL OF HOW PEOPLE PERCEIVED ME AND NO ONE WAS UNREACHABLE\n
  • As a result.....2 years later.....I have built a Sports Marketing business focused on helping clients monetize their online brand.\n\n.I have worked with a wide variety of sports teams, athletes, sports events and non-profits over the past 2 years. And, currently work with Travis Lulay (BC Lions) in building his online brand, aligning with non-profit initiatives and securing sponsorship.\n\n\n\n\n\n
  • Speaking Engagements - found on Linkedin to quote in major Sports publications and present at Sports Sponsorship conferences\nT3 CONNECT - Minnesota Wild, Washington Capitals, EA Sports, Professional Athletes\nSportsNetworker (25000+ Email List & 20000+ Visits/Month) - SEA (300+ Members) - Sports Industry Linkedin Group (55000+ Members)\n\n\n\n\n\n
  • So.....what I’m talking about here is PERSONAL BRANDING.\n\nYes....I’ve had some breaks along the way, but nothing that has happened to me happened out of luck. I have positioned my own “personal brand” to reflect the way that I want people to perceive the REAL me. And, as a result, I am starting to reap the benefits.\n\n
  • So, I went from being a hockey player to a sales guy to now being able to speak in front of crowds on the value of social media in the sports industry. I am very blessed to be able to do this, but none of this happened by chance. Everything that I did was strategically planned and I have built my personal brand to put myself into the position I wanted to be in.\n\n
  • Why Social Media?\n\nSince you are here....I probably don’t have to convince you that SOCIAL MEDIA IS NOT A FAD. But, here are some stats to hammer home the idea.\n
  • Social Media is not a’s not going away!! You can’t stop your kids/employees from using social media, but there is an incredible opportunity to use if for good rather than bad. In fact, it will become an even more important part of our lives going forward with better infrastructure (internet) and mobile technology (smartphones)\n\n
  • Older generations are getting on social media in record numbers\nYounger generation is growing up with smartphones in their hands\nOther Canadian athletes are already on social media!/perditafelicien\nSports fans want to connect with other sports fans (ie. TSN Check-in Map - Facebook Places)\n\n
  • 18-29 years - 61%\n30-49 years - 144%\n50-64 years - 176%\n65+ years - 271%\nCanadians in general, spend more time online than any other country in the world.\n\n\n\n\n
  •\n - almost half access on mobile device. Only 30M in 2010\n\n - people use Twitter for their news!\n\n\n - Google Plus currently 62M+\n,or.r_gc.r_pw.,cf.osb&fp=1ad16e61700af39a&biw=1436&bih=735\n\n\n\n
  • Fans and Sponsors will Google your name! What will they find?\n\nIf they find nothing.....this is a missed opportunity. If they find old photos of you partying in high school....this is their first impression!\n\n
  • Nathan Kotolyk\n\n\n\nEverything posted online is a part of your legacy.....whether you put it there or not. By securing your name online, you have the ability to influence the way people perceive you. And, this “Personal Brand” goes with you long after you are finished your chosen sport.\n
  • Long before Travis was a Grey Cup winner, MVP and Most Outstanding Player.....he was a nice guy from Oregon who loved fishing and loved to give his time to worth causes. And, as a result, we were able to align him with Special Olympics BC and secure a sponsorship with Oak Bay Marine Group before he threw his first ball this season.\n\n
  • Build your audience.......have to start somewhere!! Your fans want to know what it’s like to be an elite athlete!\n\nEven though it’s possible that sponsors might want to sponsor you as an athlete out of the goodness of their heart, the bigger your audience and the more intimet the connect.....the more valuable you are as an “Endorsement Athlete”\n\n
  • Even Alex Bilodeau (the first Canadian athlete to win Olympic Gold on home snow) had to start his Facebook page with 0 fans.\n\n\n\n!/ABilodeau_ski\n
  • Even if your “only” fans right now are your parents......You have to start somewhere as this is the tangible value that you have to offer to potential sponsors. Even if you start with your parents and have to start now!\n
  • Social media can be used to build support for your Olympic aspirations. This can come in the form of connecting with other athletes like Kevin Jagger has done. If you are not familiar with Kevin Jagger, he is sa former investment banker turned long track speed skater who has leveraged social media to build his persoanl brand, build a support system and secure sponsorship.\n\nSocial media can also be used to connect with trainers, nutritionists, psychologists, coaches, etc.\n\n
  • As an amateur have a 2 week window every 4 years when you are in the traditional media spotlight. And, the other 200(?) weeks you need to do everything you can to build awareness about what you are trying to accomplish.\n\n
  • It’s a well known fact that many amateur athletes are underfunded and in many cases, either work full time jobs or are incurring debt to be able to pursue their Olympic dreams.\n\nAnd, in many cases.....McDonalds is on their diet because this is all they can afford.\n\n
  • And, of course, everyone in this room is aspiring to this. But, not everyone can be Cindy Klaassen or Alex Bilodeau. You need to have more to offer than just your athletic performance. \n
  •\n\nAnd....performance doesn’t guarantee sponsorship dollars.\n\nYou just have to look at the recent announcement by Bobsled & Skeleton Canada that VISA was pulling their sponsorship.\n
  •\n\nSponsor kit includes: \nBackground\nAthletic Experience & Results\nSponsor Benefits\nCurrent Sponsors\nPersonal Info\nOlympic Dreams\n
  •\n\nAnd, he even goes as far as breaking down his “Operational Budget” to let sponsors know that he is not looking to get rich off of sponsorships.....rather just needs funds to continue pursuing his dream!!\n\nBUT IT’S OUTDATED!\n
  • Sponsors want eyeballs. By not including social media into your communication and sponsorship strategy, you are missing out on an opportunity.\n
  • There are plenty of ways to add value to a sponsorship package using social media including:\n1. Multi-Channel Campaigns - drive traffic in store from online campaigns\n2. Branding Rights - sponsor branding on athlete social accounts\n3. Sponsor Mentions - when the fit is right, it is possible to include sponsor mentions that are authentic\n4. Online Contesting - generate leads and drive traffic in store\n
  • If anything, you can sell your exposure by putting your body parts up for auction as this athlete has done by selling the rights to their shoulder to include your Twitter address.\n
  • Sports Fundrazr - Amateur Athlete Fundraising\n\n\n\n
  • So.....where do you start?\n\n
  • First and need to define your “You-niqueness”\n1. Training - not many people do what you do\n2. Hard Wires - is there something special about you?\n3. Your Story - what inspires you? why do you do what you do?\n
  • The big mistake that many people make when they first get into social media is that they make it all about them....this is not the right approach.\n\n
  • There are certain rules to social media.....and they are not much different than real life.\n\n1. Be Original\n2. Be Transparent\n3. Be Social\n4. Listen First\n5. Share The Love\n\n
  • There are many social tools out which ones should you focus on?\n
  • Facebook is the largest social network with 800+ Million’s pretty tough to ignore.\n\n\n
  • Twitter can be a very valuable tool to connect with other people on a one to one level. The important this is to look at it as an engagement tool....not a broadcasting tool!\n
  • The biggest growth in the social space is in video. More and more people are using smartphones to record and upload videos to the web. You need to take advantage of this trend now!\n
  • How to record videos (webcam, mobile, editing tools - iMovie)\nOptimize videos\nDistribute videos (Facebook, Twitter, Blog)\n\nJesse Lumsden -\nYoutube:\nTwitter:!/JesseLumsden28\n
  • How to record videos (webcam, mobile, editing tools - iMovie)\nOptimize videos\nDistribute videos (Facebook, Twitter, Blog)\n\nJesse Lumsden -\nYoutube:\nTwitter:!/JesseLumsden28\n
  • Optimize profile....don’t just say “I’m an Athlete” (Geroy Simon)\nUse applications - Slideshare, Wordpress, Doc\nSearch for relevant groups (Canada Olympics, CSC Pacific, Amateur Athletes, Athlete Sponsorhsipo)\nIf you don’t reach out to sponsors.....who will?\nGive them access to (tips on how to optimize)\n
  • I would highly recommend getting into blogging and owning your own domain. It can be quite a bit more work than just signing up for a social account. But, the value is that you own it......with Facebook & Twitter, you don’t own your profile. They can go away tomorrow and you would be left with nothing (ie. no value to package for sponsors)\n\n
  • Before you get started, remember the following:\n1. Define your Uni-niqueness\n2. Overwhelmed? Pick one platform and be really good at it!\n3. A year from now, you will wish you had started get started!!\n
  • For more information contact Trevor Turnbull - - 604-715-2550\n
  • How To Build Your Athlete Brand Online

    1. 1. How To Build YourAthlete Brand Online
    2. 2. Agenda‣ Who Is Trevor Turnbull? ‣ Personal Branding‣ Why Social Media? ‣ Who’s Using Social Media? ‣ Benefits For Amateur Athletes‣ Where To Start Before You Jump In?‣ Which Social Tools Should You Use?‣ Downloads‣ Questions
    3. 3. Who Is Trevor Turnbull? Hockey Player?
    4. 4. Who Is Trevor Turnbull? What Now?
    5. 5. Who Is Trevor Turnbull? Sales Guy?
    6. 6. Who Is Trevor Turnbull?
    7. 7. Who Is Trevor Turnbull?
    8. 8. Who Is Trevor Turnbull?
    9. 9. T3 CONNECT Sports Marketing
    10. 10. Business Ventures
    11. 11. Personal Branding
    12. 12. Personal BrandingHockey Player? Sales Guy?
    13. 13. Why Social Media?
    14. 14. Social Media Is Not A Fad Social Media is changing the way we consume information,communicate & interact with eachother, make purchasing decisions, view the world and live our lives
    15. 15. Who Is On Social Media? ‣ Friends ‣ Coaches ‣ Family ‣ Nutritionists ‣ Athletes ‣ Trainers ‣ Sponsors ‣ Advisors ‣ Fans ‣ Agents
    16. 16. US Internet Users Who Use Social Networking Sites 18-29 Yrs 30-49 Yrs 50-64 Yrs 65+ Yrs 86 90 83 76Percentage Who Use Social Media 73 75 67 61 58 60 48 47 45 36 36 25 25 26 30 22 16 16 12 11 13 15 7 5 7 4 0 Sept 2005 May 2008 Nov 2008 Apr 2009 Dec 2009 May 2010Largest Growth Rate (Sept 2005 - May 2010) *50-64 years - 176% *65+ years - 271%
    17. 17. Social Media Stats800M+ Active Users (350M+ Access on Mobile)440M+ Twitter Accts (2B Search Queries/Day)150 Years Of YouTube Videos Watched on FB/Day135M+ Members (45% Key Decision Makers!)Google+ 400M Users By End Of 201220,000 Blogs Mention “Canadian Amateur Athletes”
    18. 18. Control Your Personal Brand Fans & Sponsors Will Google Your Name! What Will They Find?
    19. 19. Control Your Personal Brand Everything Posted Online Is A Part Of Your Legacy!
    20. 20. Control Your Personal Brand
    21. 21. Connect With Fans
    22. 22. Connect With Fans0 0 LIKE’s 65,378 LIKE’s ??? January 3, 2012
    23. 23. Connect With FansEven if your “only” fans right now are your parents Have to Start Somewhere!
    24. 24. Build Support http://podiumplatform.com
    25. 25. Create Your Own MediaSummer Olympics Winter Olympics THE FACT IS.....THE OLYMPICS ARE ONLY ONCE EVERY 4 YEARSYOU NEED TO CREATE YOUR OWN MEDIA
    26. 26. UnderFunded?
    27. 27. Performance = Sponsorship
    28. 28. Performance = Sponsorship??Give Us A Push. Gravity Will Do The Rest
    29. 29. Sponsorship Package ‣ Background ‣ Athletic Experience ‣ Sponsor Benefits ‣ Current Sponsors ‣ Personal Info ‣ Olympic Dreams No Mention Of SOCIAL MEDIA
    30. 30. Sponsorship Package
    31. 31. Social Influence ‣ 161 Followers ‣ some sponsor mentions‣ 5 Videos - 1300 Views‣ Underutilized Sponsors want eyeballs!
    32. 32. Social Influence Social Media Value ‣ Multi-Channel Campaigns ‣ Branding Rights ‣ Facebook ‣ Twitter ‣ YouTube ‣ Website ‣ Sponsor Mentions ‣ Online Contesting ‣ Lead Generation ‣ Brand Affinity
    33. 33. Sponsorship
    34. 34. FundraisingSPORTS Powered By ‣ Targeted Fundraising ‣ Athlete Endorsement ‣ Matched Sponsor Donation ‣ Personalized Messaging ‣ Social Sharing ‣ WOM Promotion ‣ Social Proof
    35. 35. Where To Start?
    36. 36. Where To Start?Define Your You-niqueness 1. Training a. Not many people do what you do! 2. Hard Wires a. Is there Something special about you? 3. Your Story a. What Inspires You? b. Why Do You Do What You Do?You-Niqueness + Showing Up = Opportunity
    37. 37. The BIG Mistake
    38. 38. Rules Of Engagement ‣ Be Original ‣ Be Transparent ‣ Be Social ‣ Listen First ‣ Share The Love
    39. 39. Which Social Tools To Use?
    40. 40. Facebook Facebook Basics ‣ Facebook Fan Page ‣ LIKE others as Fan Page ‣ Create Unique Content ‣ Share Others Content ‣ @ Mention Others Facebook Tools ‣ ‣ ‣
    41. 41. Twitter Twitter Basics ‣ Optimize Your Profile ‣ Include Links ‣ Listen First ‣ Use Hashtags ‣ Share The Love Twitter Tools ‣ ‣ ‣
    42. 42. YouTube YouTube Basics ‣ Create Unique Content ‣ Behind The Scenes ‣ Training ‣ Nutrition ‣ Make It Personal ‣ Leverage Mobile ‣ Share Everywhere5 Steps To More Views On YouTube
    43. 43. YouTubeBehind The Scenes Unique Content Sponsor Shoutout
    44. 44. YouTube Jesse Lumsden - Canadian Olympic Bobsledder
    45. 45. Linkedin Linkedin Basics ‣ Optimize ‣ Application ‣ Join Groups ‣ Build Your Network ‣ Network With A Purpose
    46. 46. Blogging Getting Started ‣ Register A Domain ‣ Sign Up For Hosting ‣ Install Wordpress ‣ Capture Emails ‣ Install Social Widgets ‣ Facebook ‣ Twitter Other Blog Tools ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣
    47. 47. Remember1. Define your YOU-NIQUENESS2. Overwhelmed? Pick One And Be Really Good
    48. 48. Questions? Let’s Connect Downloads ‣ Presentation Slides ‣ Sample Sponsorship Package ‣ Samples Sponsorship Brochure ‣ London 2012 - Social Media Policy ‣ Twixplode Ebook ‣ Linkedinfluence
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