Today, FanWord announced the first group of partners for their brand new, free student-athlete directory product, FanWord Boost.
On FanWord Boost, a publicly accessible platform, each registered athletic organization has their own directory that simplifies how fans, businesses, donors, and other supporters can find and connect with student-athletes for NIL partnerships, professional opportunities, or simply to engage with them on social media.
More than 40 NCAA and professional sports organizations are now using at least one FanWord product — FanWord Stories (a unique storytelling platform and service), FanWord Coach (an NIL education and compliance solution), or FanWord Boost — to help their athletes build, protect, market, and monetize their personal brands.
“It’s a very special day for us here at FanWord,” says FanWord CEO, Christopher Aumueller. “FanWord Boost is a unique NIL and student-athlete empowerment platform that will make it a lot easier for student-athletes to grow their brands and get discovered. It’s great to align with these innovative organizations that truly value their student-athletes regardless of the sport they play or how many social media followers they have. It’s something that couldn’t align more with our DNA, and we are so excited to march into this new era together.”
Unlike marketplaces and similar NIL solutions, FanWord Boost does not target deal facilitation. Instead, the platform exclusively focuses on making athletes more visible, marketable, and accessible. Because of the way FanWord Boost is set up, the platform drives traffic to institutional NIL platforms such as a local marketplace, therefore complementing and supporting existing solutions.
“Athletes currently don’t have a place where they can showcase their entire brand in one spot,” says Aumueller. “Looking at NIL alone, athletes use dozens of platforms to partner with brands, sell content, offer coaching services, etc. Then, you have athletes pursuing entrepreneurial ventures, starting their own podcast or hosting camps and clinics. On top of that, you have institutions launching local marketplaces or building their own NFT collection. With FanWord Boost, we are centralizing and aggregating that information so we make it as seamless as possible for athletes, businesses, fans, and other interested parties to interact.”
With today’s announcement, more than 2,500 student-athletes will gain access to the FanWord Boost platform as soon as their respective organization is ready to onboard their athletes.
Athletic organizations who choose to partner with FanWord Boost will get their own free, public student-athlete directory under https://app.fanword.com.
Now, all athletes associated with that organization can set up their own profile and link to everything about their personal brand in one place. This includes their social media channels, the marketplace platforms they can be found on, all the products & services they are offering, content about them, and much more. (See ‘Profile’ Example)
FanWord will assist athletes with their onboarding and profile setup process.
After profile completion, athletes can then simply add their FanWord Boost profile link to their social media bios and start driving traffic to their profile. Athletic organizations can add a ‘Student-Athlete Directory’ to their athletic website as well as the FanWord Boost profile links to the roster pages of their athletes.
Businesses, fans, donors, and other interested parties can conveniently browse through the public directory and either look up specific athletes or search for certain queries — for example, all women’s basketball players that are on Opendorse, all athletes that are on LinkedIn, all football players that sell merchandise, all tennis players that offer private lessons, and much more.
This will help all athletes, regardless of sport, gender, passions, or social media audiences size get discovered.
Additionally, each athlete can opt-in to have a contact button on their profile that allows businesses and fans to contact the athlete directly. Each message is filtered by the FanWord system first to ensure athletes aren’t exposed to spam or random messages. Everything that is considered a serious inquiry will get forwarded to an email address of the athlete’s choice.
“I am pleased to offer FanWord Boost to Oakland University student-athletes. Boost complements the existing NIL resources the athletics department is providing to student-athletes through its Gold Standard NIL program, and empowers student-athletes to develop a personal platform that can enhance not only their personal brand development but also professional opportunities now and into the future,” Steven Waterfield, Director of Athletics.
“Our partnership with FanWord is another layer to building the most student-athlete friendly NIL program in the country. Not only does it work seamlessly with the Boise State NIL Exchange, providing an opportunity for businesses to find our student-athletes, it also serves as an easy way for fans to find and engage with the young men and women competing for the Broncos. This assists in maximizing fan engagement opportunities, which simultaneously helps them build their online presence and increase value,” Mike Walsh, Associate AD for Revenue Innovation and Business Development.
“Think NIL is excited to be one of the initial launch partners of FanWord’s student-athlete NIL directory. An important part of our business model is seeking out and securing NIL opportunities for TCU student-athletes. FanWord helps streamline this process for the student-athletes, businesses, and Think NIL,” Brent Cunningham, VP of Operations
“We are so excited to be partnering with FanWord. FanWord Boost is going to provide our student-athletes with another tool to build their brand and image as they explore personal, professional, and NIL opportunities. For Men’s Gymnastics, FanWord Boost is going to help unify our NIL efforts within our community while also creating additional exposure for our student-athletes and sport to a broader audience,” Randy Jepsen, President.
“The FanWord Boost directory will be a tremendous asset to all Rising Spear student-athletes as they will have a tool to organize all NIL endeavors. Additionally, our members and business community will have the ability to view a comprehensive directory every time they visit RisingSpear.com,” William Cowen, COO.
“Portland State is excited to partner with FanWord and be part of the first group to launch the NIL directory. Being in the heart of downtown Portland, the sneaker and sports apparel capital of the word, we recognized last summer that the new name, image & likeness legislation was a huge opportunity for our student-athletes. We in the athletic department want to ensure that our student-athletes can take full advantage of the new rules. The NIL directory is a great tool to that end as it eases the connection between interested businesses and our student-athletes,” Andy Jobanek, Assistant Media Relations Director.
“I am excited that we are able to partner with FanWord and be one of the first schools to join in this endeavor. This will allow us to enhance our platform and supplement our partnership with NOCAP Sports, providing more opportunities for our student-athletes. We’re ready to launch this enhancement with FanWord for all of our student-athletes,” George Lee, Director of Athletics.
All partner directories will be set up and publicly accessible in the coming weeks and months after a corresponding onboarding call with each individual organization and its student-athletes.
“We couldn’t be more grateful for the support of these innovative organizations,” says Aumueller. “We’ve been very strategic about our first group of partners and can’t wait to help their athletes maximize their brand value.”
More partnerships, game-changing alignments, and strategic integrations will be announced soon.
Yes! It’s entirely free for athletic organizations to have their own directory and for their athletes to create their own profiles with unlimited links. The free version does come with onboarding assistance and support as well. We do offer premium features for an even more powerful experience. Simply contact us to learn more.
FanWord Boost is a complement to your existing partnerships. Most of your initiatives are geared towards helping your athletes monetize their brands. We don’t touch that part. Our solution is exclusively designed to help athletes market themselves and get discovered. As a result, we actually help drive traffic to your local marketplace, your NFT marketplace, your shop, etc. We don’t replace or compete with those platforms — we bring them together and market them.
Social media directories are a great starting point for businesses and individuals to see where they can find your athletes online. But social media directories aren’t helping your athletes get discovered or drive more NIL business. Think of FanWord Boost as a major extension to your social media directory. We add a lot of new information (i.e. marketplace platforms your athletes are on, the events they are hosting, the services they are offering, etc.) and give each athlete their own profile to market and drive traffic to. On top of that, all of that data is consolidated in a custom school-specific directory, making it really easy for interested parties to not only see which social media platforms your athletes are on (we include that information as well) but many other data points.
FanWord Boost is not a marketplace that facilitates or manages partnerships. Instead, it is a marketing and discovery tool for your athletes. Athletes would actually list the marketplace platforms they are using and therefore drive traffic to those resources. Parties interested in working with your athletes can then complete NIL deals utilizing the platforms your student-athletes are already using.
No! One of the main reasons we built FanWord Boost was to support athletes that don’t have those large audiences; the ones that make up 95% of your department. Because FanWord Boost aggregates data from all of your athletes in one centralized hub, we drive additional reach and exposure for all of your athletes, including the 95%, which will result in more NIL business and professional opportunities.
Yes! While athletes can certainly use the platform to promote their NIL opportunities, athletes can also use the platform to simply market their social media accounts, videos & articles about them, etc. Every athlete interested in boosting their brand benefits from our platform.
FanWord is an athlete storytelling and branding company that builds solutions to help athletes grow, protect, promote, and monetize their personal brands. FanWord was recently named one of 13 companies that shape the future of NIL marketing and is located in Lincoln, NE. The company currently works with more than 35 athletic organizations and 8,000 student-athletes nationwide.
Visit fanword.com to learn more.
NEW PRODUCT ANNOUNCEMENT
A custom NIL directory for athletic departments to help student-athletes get discovered