Our sports media experts will present you with case studies, practical examples and research findings that will help you to make important decisions regarding your online presence.

The course is spread across five sections, beginning with an introduction into why you should consider increasing your exposure through to protecting and repairing your image.

You’ll come away confident in your ability to successfully grow your brand as an athlete and secure sponsorship deals that could fund your sporting dreams.

Dedicating time to building your brand in a way that is authentic to who you are can be a hugely rewarding process for you, personally and professionally. Sponsors want to engage with athletes who can strengthen and promote their brand, so having a significant following on social media, for example, will set you apart.

Financial support, equipment and increased exposure are just a few of the benefits associated with being a sponsored athlete. Join us on this course to learn how to engage with the media, maintain an online presence and secure your very own sponsorship deal.

What you will learn

The course is split into five sections:

  1. Introduction
  2. The online you
  3. Interaction with media
  4. Sponsors
  5. Image and crisis management

Within these five sections, you’ll discover methods of building your brand in the most authentic way and how increasing your exposure could help you to secure lucrative sponsorship deals.

As Dr Kenon Brown explains in the final section, though, increased exposure means you could become susceptible to damaging accusations and rumours concerning your personal and/or professional life. You’ll learn the best practices in repairing your image when confronted with such issues in a course that equips you with the tools to reap the rewards of media exposure.

Meet your course experts

Dr Andrew Billings arrived at the University of Alabama in 2011, where he assumed the role of the Ronald Reagan Chair of Broadcasting. His research interests lie in the intersection of sport, mass media, consumption habits and identity-laden content.

Dr Kim Bissell was appointed Director of the Institute for Communication and Information Research in 2011. She also serves as Associate Dean for Research in the College of Communication and Information Sciences.

“We’re not trying to make you perfect, simple robots, perfectly packaged for the media. What we are hoping to do is show you how you can best utilise your time and come across to others in a best possible frame. To be authentic, to be real,” says Kim.

Dr Kenon Brown is an assistant professor of public relations, joining the faculty in August 2012 after completing his PhD at Alabama. His research interests include image and reputation management in sports, and emergency and public safety crisis response. Prior to his graduate studies, Kenon worked for eight years in restaurant management and marketing.

Dr Eric Macintosh is an Associate Professor in Sport Management at the University of Ottawa and has worked with and researched many prominent international sports organisations such as the IOC, Commonwealth Games Federation and NHL.