Today’s Agenda: Establishing Brand Leadership with NIL
+ NIL advice from one of the world's most influential CMOs, Chris Davis, (CMO & SVP Merchandising, New Balance)
The Athlete’s Bureau’s mission continues: deliver actionable advice and impactful advocacy for college athletes and those that care about us.
In this issue:
+ TAB Podcast Conversation with Chris Davis (CMO & SVP, Merchandising at New Balance) with mission critical NIL advice for college athletes.
+ Featured Article. Bringing New Balance to NIL. How New Balance has staked out a leadership position with NIL by forging authentic brand collabs with athletes and cultural icons.
+ Real NIL Brand Creative Examples featuring college athletes with brands like Steve Madden, Stanley, and Doich
+ Four Essential Bank Accounts for the Modern College Athlete
+ TAB Poll Results: NIL Impact on Brand Perception
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Featured Podcast Interview
NIL advice from the world’s most influential CMOs directly to college athletes.
Welcome to The Athlete’s Bureau Podcast and our series of discussions with the CMOs driving the growth of NIL.
In this episode, Chase Griffin is joined by Chris Davis, the Chief Marketing Officer & SVP of Merchandising for New Balance. Chris has been recognized as one of the “world’s most influential” CMOs by Forbes. Chris has also led New Balance to a top two position on the Hypebeast Brand Relevancy Index. With over $5 Billion in revenue, New Balance is one of the most successful brands in sports and under Chris’ leadership, the brand has forged some of the industry’s most memorable pop culture collaborations with Klutch Athletics, Jack Harlow, and Jaden Smith. Even Taylor Swift wore the New Balance 550s at a recent Chiefs game. In the world of college athletics, New Balance has also been an innovator in NIL and today we get to hear from their CMO directly.
Watch full Podcast HERE.
By: Griffin Uribe Brown (Syracuse Newhouse ‘26)
Last May, NBC reported that New Balance, which brought in $5.3 billion in revenue in 2022, “is seeing its sales grow faster than that of larger rivals Nike and Adidas.” A Complex article titled “How New Balance Reinvented Itself” credited the company’s increased revenue and social media impressions to tapping into trends and working with iconic cultural collaborators.
In addition to a lineup of brand partners that includes: Klutch Athletics (Klutch Sports); artists like Jack Harlow and Jaden Smith and athletes like MLB’s Shohei Ohtani and the NBA’s Kawhi Leonard, New Balance has also been an active in the NIL (Name, Image and Likeness) marketplace. When NIL rules were established (in July 2021), Davis (New Balance CMO) found an “uncharted opportunity.”
“I think for us, what was so exciting about NIL, is it really represented this wild west landscape where we could put the imprints of our brand values, our brand identity, our brand strategy in an arena that was fairly untouched,” Davis said.
By: Lauren Huttner (Northwestern Medill ‘24)
Each week, we’ll be rounding up some of our favorite NIL creative campaigns from athletes having success in NIL, and spotlighting what other athlete content-creators can learn from them.
Taking inspiration from what fashion content creators, Jacey Hinton did an incredible job demonstrating the versatility of Steve Madden shoes in her collaboration with the brand. Showing off three different looks, Hinton took advantage of fun transitions and camera movement to keep the content engaging.
The Takeaway: Take inspiration from other content niches. Of course, stay authentic to your personal brand, but don’t be afraid to look for ideas to inspire your scripting, filming and captioning.
Continue reading full article with more examples
By: Jackson Hartz (UCLA ‘24)
College athletes face unique financial challenges, balancing academics, athletic commitments, personal expenses, and maximizing NIL income opportunities. Managing finances effectively is crucial for success both on and off the field and helps establish lifelong healthy financial habits.
To begin, one of the key benefits of having multiple bank accounts is that it enables athletes to separate their day to day spending money from savings and investing. Most financial institutions have apps and tools that simplify the process of setting a budget and managing money across multiple accounts. These apps make it easier to track spending, automate investing, and help avoid dipping into hard-earned savings for impulse purchases or non-essential spending. Choosing a primary banking relationship with an institution that has a personal banker (or financial advisor) that can help you set-up and manage all of these core accounts is important.
TAB In the News
Front Office Sports: Amanda Christovich, “The NCAA’s Existential Question: Can You Pay Players and Still Call Them Amateurs?”
WSOC TV 9 (ABC Affiliate - Charlotte, NC) “... lawmakers weigh national rules for NIL.”
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