Clever Girls Launches The Athlete Influencer Network
We’re thrilled to announce Team On 3, The Athlete Influencer Network. A couple of years ago we invested in strengthening certain Clever Girls verticals including millennials, Pinners, and Instagrammers. We thought, “Why stop there? Let’s look at other opportunities to make an impact without limiting ourselves in any way.”
During the Winter Olympics in Sochi, we noticed a story about an American snowboarder who moved to Russia to compete – and won a gold medal for that country – because he couldn’t raise enough money to train in the U.S. That’s nothing new. Professional and Olympic athletes often waste valuable training time chasing sponsorships. Because of our brand relationships and our experience running hundreds of successful influencer programs over the last five years, we knew we could make an impact with athlete influencers.
Team On 3 includes more than 100 athletes: men and women who are Super Bowl Champions, Olympians, NFL and AFL players, fitness professionals, coaches, and/or mentors. Our athletes have engaged social media followers and are influential in real life, active in their communities, and are hometown heroes.
iBlog: What is it about your initiative that is providing innovation to the market?
Clever Girls: Brands use athletes in their advertising campaigns to increase brand exposure, fan affinity, and drive sales, but they focus on the top one percent. Team On 3 provides brands with access to the other 99 percent who are more influential because rather than league-curated social media channels, which may or may not be run by the athlete, our athletes are creating their own content and sharing directly with their friends, fans, and family.
Social media is vital to an athlete’s success as a personal brand. Professional athletes begin developing fans and followers the day they wear their first jersey, and they nurture their fanbases long after their career ends.
We started Clever Girls six years ago, and we’ve never strayed from our mission to help brands connect with social media influencers and their engaged communities and to help those influencers achieve their personal and professional goals. We’re applying that same knowledge to Team On 3. No other network offers brands access to so many athletes in one place, with turnkey social activations.
Brands want to connect with people which is why the “human touch” is vital to our work. We automate where we need to – we have a proprietary back end system which manages our network and allows members to opt in to campaigns – but are human where it counts. We could never automate a business where connecting people is so important. We have an incomparable project management team who ensures program quality and consistency and provides unparalleled client care. We proudly boast an 86 percent client return rate. In short, we know how to do this, and we want to help professional athletes focus on the things that are important to them: training, competing, and winning.Team On 3’s mission is to help keep these athletes playing... Click To Tweet
iBlog: What is most appealing to your members and to companies?
Clever Girls: Team On 3’s mission is to support our athletes’ personal and professional goals. Our network is comprised of athletes who are also influential on social media. We help them monetize that influence so they can focus on becoming the best athlete possible. Our network manager was a former professional football player and knows how difficult it is to perfect one’s craft while also worrying about finding endorsement deals. He relates to our network on a personal level and also understands the unique constraints of an athlete’s schedule.
“Team On 3’s mission is to help keep these athletes playing instead of having to make the decision between making a life follow- ing their passion or making a living.”
Team On 3 connects brands with vetted professional athletes who are active on social media – sharing what they eat, what they are wearing, how they are training, what they do to relax and more. Professional athletes are an untapped powerhouse of social media influence and Team On 3 harnesses and unleashes that influence into award winning campaigns. Imagine a cereal campaign where we connect influential moms (and their cereal-loving families) with a brand and then complement the activation with athletes who are also fans of the brand. It’s a powerful 1-2 punch of influence and we can do that. And as with our Clever Girls programs, we guarantee results. We know metrics are important to our clients and we deliver.
iBlog: If you could make a prediction based off of last year’s experience, what trends do you see your network adapting to in the year ahead?
Clever Girls: Explosive growth. Athletes understand the business of growing a brand and so do we, but we also understand what motivates athletes. Our athletes tell us they like working with us because they know we have their best interests and goals in mind. Just as with our Clever network, our Team On 3 network is growing through word of mouth because our reputation precedes us.
Athletes put their bodies on the line every day training and competing to be the best athlete possible. They represent our favorite sports teams and wield influence even after their playing career is over. They should be able to compete for as long as their body physically allows it. Too many elite athletes retire or quit because they aren’t able to afford to train, especially Olympians. Our network includes athletes who are fighting to stay focused on competing, not training, supplement, and travel costs. Team On 3’s mission is to help keep these athletes playing instead of having to make the decision between making a life following their passion or making a living.