For an athlete, branding starts with what they do on the field or on the court. The way that you play the game or the sport is going to define how the public sees you. Nothing is more important than winning in sports, and so this becomes the core of your brand.
However, experts are very quick to point out that this is not nearly enough in the modern sporting world. It’s not just about how you play the game or how many wins you have. Your brand is very complex and absolutely matters when considering your overall success.
What goes into a brand?
An athlete’s brand is their personality, their unique and individual self. This is certainly helpful for those who are charismatic and successful, but you have to think about how everything that happens is going to reflect on your overall brand as an athlete.
Something like getting a DUI can be hugely negative to your brand — while entering into business partnerships with shoe companies and other corporations can be very helpful to your brand. Neither thing has to do with your sport, at least not directly, but they play into the picture of how the public sees you and the influence you have.
In the modern day, even the things that you say on social media can be part of your brand. There have been many athletes who have lost fans for one ill-considered tweet or a post on Facebook.
Protecting that brand
Since you are your own brand and you get to define your success, then protecting your brand becomes incredibly important. Make sure you know exactly what legal steps you can take to capitalize on this and everything that you’ve worked so hard for over the years.