NFLPA Marketing Advice to Rookies: “Be Like Gronk”

Image via Getty

Image via Getty

According to the NFL Players Association, New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski is the gold standard when it comes to marketing himself and his brand.

The NFLPA held their annual Rookie Premiere orientation event at the Beverly Hilton last weekend. One of the most notable pieces of advise they handed out was “be like Gronk.”

“Some people think he’s just this extension of a frat boy, and that it’s sort of accidental,” explained Ahmad Nassar, president of Players Inc., the NFLPA’s licensing and marketing subsidiary. “And that’s wrong. It’s not accidental, it’s very purposeful. So the message there is, really good branding is where you don’t even feel it. You think, ‘Oh, that’s just Gronk being Gronk.’ Actually, that’s his brand, but it’s so good and so ingrained and so authentic, you don’t even know it’s a brand or think it.”

The NFLPA is not saying players should start spiking stuff, slapping butts, and twerking on yachts. They are saying players should emulate the way he stays true to himself and cashes in on it.

“When we say, ‘Be like Gronk,’ we mean plan out who you want to be and stay true to that, because brands and fans will sniff it out if you’re not authentic,” Nassar said. “If you’re not authentic it’s not going to resonate well, and people will think that you’re just doing it to make a buck.”

The NFLPA also cited Odell Beckham Jr. and Dak Prescott as players to emulate.

“Nobody was focused on Odell at this event [back in 2014]. In fact, that was the year that all the focus was on Johnny Manziel,” said Steve Scebelo, vice president at NFL Players Inc. “But a year later he’s on the cover of Madden. And part of that was ‘the catch.’ But it also was because of the way that he carried himself off the field. So that’s part of the message, to be prepared for the off-field opportunities.”

At this point the New York Giants would probably prefer their rookies did not emulate OBJ. But obviously teams and players don’t always see eye to eye.

Hat Tip – [Boston Globe]

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