For three weeks in March, the whole nation turns its attention to college basketball where one shot, upset or moment creates superstars in the industry.
With NIL continuing to become an essential part of college athletics, FanWord, an athlete storytelling and branding company, has announced a new NCAA March Madness database.
The database will provide potential NIL partners with an athletic directory of every men’s and women’s basketball player competing in the NCAA Tournament.
“Our entire platform is publicly accessible. Fans and businesses don’t have to create an account to access it,” Chris Aumueller, CEO of FanWord, told The NIL Deal. “The structure of our platform is as easy as it gets. Every athletic organization (i.e. athletic departments, conferences, agencies, collectives, etc.) has its own directory on FanWord which simplifies how visitors navigate our platform. Our supporters can use our advanced search and dozens of filters to connect with the right athletes.”
FanWord’s innovative approach to merging name, image and likeness with the tournament simplifies the process for businesses, fans or potential partners to connect with athletes.
The database will include an individual profile of every student-athlete playing in the dance. It will also feature an average of two to four links per athlete to their social media accounts or NIL-based links along with their follower counts.
While FanWord’s database is modeled for the public to connect with student-athletes, it also allows athletes the ability to customize their profiles to better represent themselves.
“We want to make it easier for athletes to market themselves, build their brands, and tell their stories — regardless of the sport they play, which marketplaces they use, or how many followers they have,” said Aumueller. “On the other hand, we want to give businesses and fans an opportunity to learn more about the ‘human underneath the athlete’ and also easily explore the different ways they can connect and collaborate with an athlete — and do all that in one place without having to register or pay.”
In an era of sports where athletes’ social media accounts correlate directly with how their fans view their personality, the database is a useful tool for student-athletes to grow their brand in the way they see fit.
“Athletes see instant value the moment their profile is set up. Once it is, athletes increase their exposure and visibility right away. On top of that, every athlete can access a variety of brand development tools. From education to custom social media graphics — athletes can use a handful of innovative features that empower their storytelling and brand development efforts without adding to their workload,” said Aumueller.
The FanWord NCAA Tournament athletic directory already has created portfolios of over 1,000 players and will continue to update the database during the duration of the tournament.
FanWord continuing to make its mark in the NIL space is just another example of how name, image and likeness has become an integral part of college athletics.