Athlete Brand Analysis: Paul Rabil, Lacrosse Player

  Photo Courtesy:   instagram.com/paulrabil

Photo Courtesy: instagram.com/paulrabil

A six-time lacrosse champion and three-time MVP, Paul Rabil has been named "the most tech-savvy athlete of 2017" and among the top-40 most entrepreneurial athletes by Entrepreneur.

If it wasn't for his relatively small digital following compared to A-list athlete brands, Paul might just have the most innovative, comprehensive athlete brand we've seen.

Paul's Athlete Brand Scouting Report

STRENGTHS:

✅ Official accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn

✅ Athlete brand logo

✅ Great balance between on- and off-field content

Life story well-positioned in his digital footprint

✅ Significant, consistent amount of original content (e.g. video, podcast)

✅ Search engine optimization

✅ Email marketing program

✅ All eight Internet-based revenue streams, including affiliate marketing, revenue sharing, sponsored content, e-commerce, a membership club ("Paul Rabil Experience"), online advertising, guest publishing and original content

GROWTH OPPORTUNITIES:

❌ 573,700 follower count (as of April 18, 2018)

❌ Lack of all four brand association models

❌ Lacks a Converged Media Model, Integrated Content Strategy and Sponsored Content Strategy, and the Full-Stack Endorsement Model

❌ Blog content is inconsistent and not always written in first-person

❌ Lacks full scale of affiliate marketing, revenue sharing, sponsored content, e-commerce, online advertising, guest publishing and original content

  Photo Courtesy: instagram.com/paulrabil

Photo Courtesy: instagram.com/paulrabil

To maximize his athlete brand worth and value to the New York Lizards, Major League Lacrosse, sponsors, marketing deals, business ventures and other stakeholders, here are four high-level strategies Paul and his brand managers can start deploying today:

1. Increase his influence, leverage and value by scaling the number of followers across Paul's digital footprint.

To increase his number of followers, Paul and his brand managers should consider the following:

  • Develop strategic engagement campaigns and digital brand activations that encourage fans to engage in social sharing, therefore exposing his athlete brand to significantly more people
     
  • Leverage the four brand association models to strategically reach fans who engage with the team he plays for, the league he plays in, the sport he plays, and the city he plays in
     
  • Create a Converged Media Model that combines earned, owned, paid and rented media to generate more exposure, followers and engagement at scale
  Photo Courtesy: instagram.com/paulrabil

Photo Courtesy: instagram.com/paulrabil

2. Strengthen existing digital revenue streams. 

To bolster the value of his digital footprint, Paul and his brand managers should consider the following:

  1. Utilize tools like Google AdSense or media.net to further monetize Paul's blog.
     
  2. Leverage the Full Stack Model to increase the value and length of digital sponsorships and marketing deals.
     
  3. Add more lifestyle products to his e-commerce operation, using the Direct-to-Fan Model.
     
  4. Use Facebook Instant Articles to drive additional, scalable income from Paul's Facebook page.

3. Drive additional, scalable and passive income with affiliate marketing.

The growth of online shopping has created another tremendous opportunity for athletes, who can join affiliate marketing programs like Amazon's Affiliate Program to generate additional, scalable and in many ways passive income.

Not to mention, most online retailers have affiliate marketing programs, making it easy for athletes to make even more money when they endorse a product or service that's sold online.


By scaling his digital following, strengthening his existing digital revenue streams and implementing new ones, Paul Rabil will take his athlete brand to the next level.