The importance of media training for athletes
An athlete’s job doesn’t end when he or she walks off the field. From the highest-paid athletes to up-and-comers, our sports stars are almost constantly in the public eye.
An athlete’s job doesn’t end when he or she walks off the field. From the highest-paid athletes to up-and-comers, our sports stars are almost constantly in the public eye. If they don’t have the right media training, then they could do some serious damage to their reputation and image, as well as the reputation and image of their team. So what exactly is media training, and what does it entail?
1. Media training shapes an athlete’s brand.
Everyone who is in the public eye has a personal brand, whether they try to have one or not. It doesn’t matter if they want one, either. If you’re an athlete and appearing on television in front of hundreds or thousands of people on a regular basis, you have a personal brand, whether you like it or not.
It’s what an athlete does with that brand that’s important. Media training teaches athletic figures of all types, from star athletes to coaches, how to shape a brand that’s appealing and agreeable, as well as most beneficial to those who work with them.
This shaping can take a myriad of forms. Sometimes an athlete that’s on the shyer or more reserved side will need to learn how to confidently and calmly speak with the media. Other times, they might need to learn how to engage with fans in a comfortable, likable way.
2. Media training helps an athlete learn to deal with the media.
Athletes have a lot of press-related responsibilities, and those responsibilities just increase the more famous an athlete becomes. After every game, there’s an interview. Leading up to big games, there are more interviews. During pre-season or training, there are — yes — more interviews. And the press isn’t always kind.
Journalists aren’t known for sparing peoples’ feelings. They might ask upsetting interview questions or intentionally try to rile an athlete up, just to get a good quote. Media training prepares athletes for dealing with these types of situations.
3. Media training tells athletes what NOT to do.
If an athlete has a well-shaped brand, they can ruin it with just a few simple mistakes, regardless of how long that brand has taken to build. Posting to social media while under the influence, causing ruckuses while in public or any manner of disagreeable behavior can ruin an athlete’s work.
Media training can help athletes learn the right skills to steer clear of anything that might poorly impact their reputations.
4. Media training prepares athletes for the future.
And lastly, media training can help set up an athlete for future success. An athlete with a positive brand, who’s able to work with the media and public in a positive manner, is more likely to get sponsorship and marketing deals. They are also more likely to see success after their professional sports career is over when they’re looking for further opportunities after retirement. Not to mention, a well-liked, media-ready athlete will be an asset to any team that he or she is on throughout the entirety of their career.