The Social Media Value of NCAA College Athletes
NCAA Talent | NCAA Social Media | College Athlete Social Media
July 1st, 2021 will go down in history. On this date, the NCAA and a mixture of state laws came into effect and let athletes have some protection and opportunities by monetizing their NIL (name, image, and likeness) rights. These NCAA talents previously were unable to monetize and receive payments from sponsorships or endorsements from brands, products, and services for fear of implications on stipends or scholarships.
For a long time, many businesses have been using student-athletes to make money by utilizing the hard work of these students without paying them. As per the NCAA, only 2% out of all the college-level students get to play professionally or represent the country at the Olympics or other major tournaments and sporting events. The rest remain unpaid and unrecognized in the world of sport. With this policy, 98% of college or university-level sportspersons or athletes have a chance to get their share based on their talent, determination, and social media presence.
The college athletes with their limited reach have a high rate of engagement because of their popularity within a highly interactive circle who know them personally off the field as well. Their determination and excellence in the sporting arena give them an authenticity and a genuine approach. These college athletes on social media are popular and have a fan base. We say mostly because not all of them are equally popular. The ones participating in popular sports like baseball, soccer, or basketball easily overshadow the other ones.
This new policy brings the lesser-known ones into the spotlight and of course, this includes women. Even on a professional level, women’s sports get about 2% airtime from major broadcasters like ESPN Sports Center. The NCAA NIL policy will allow these popular stars of social media to encash on their social media followers and audience engagement. Female athletes gain more attention on social media and thus come to equal terms and a chance of making a living out of their achievements. Needless to say, this also drives diversity in sports and empowers female athletes to gain more equality in the arena.
When it comes to talking about the value of NCAA social media stars who are athletes there are many ways they can impact social media users and their audiences. Here are some of them as mentioned below.
1. Sponsored videos on YouTube, Twitter, etc.
2. Sponsored advertisements or social media posts.
3. Enhancing merchandise popularity.
4. Summer camps, their preferred workouts, training, etc.
They can genuinely place brands, products, or services in front of their audiences by portraying their personal positive experiences. Most importantly this does not need the athletes to have millions of followers as long as they fall under a category catering to a particular niche. For example, a college athlete playing soccer can promote various products like sports shoes, soccer balls, sports apparel, a local cafe, and even fashion.
The NCAA talents can use their popularity to endorse regional, national, or international businesses, product lines, or even services to a certain extent using their social media accounts. With the NCAA NIL policy, these college athletes would gain some monetary benefits out of it without having to meet obligations on their stipends or scholarships.