About

 

The Team USA Athlete Marketing Platform, launching as a pilot in 2021, is an innovative, athletes-first program designed to expand, streamline and elevate marketing opportunities and earning potential for U.S. Olympic and Paralympic athletes. Created in cooperation with athletes and National Governing Bodies, the opt-in platform is the first of its kind and places Team USA sponsors and licensees directly at athletes’ fingertips via an app and online, providing athletes with opportunities to elevate their voice and personal brand. The platform will continue to evolve and improve based on athlete input and experience over time.

AMP is optional for Team USA athletes and entirely additive to any existing endorsement deals, expanding the possibilities for branding collaborations that may otherwise be out of reach. Powered by trusted, turnkey technology, the platform offers a custom solution that will reimagine and expand athlete sponsorship and earning opportunities within the Olympic and Paralympic ecosystem, both today and for future generations of Team USA.

In addition to commercial use, the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee and LA28 will utilize the platform to engage athletes in social, branding and fundraising opportunities, while also featuring athlete brand education and development opportunities. 

In 2021, eligible athletes will be invited to participate as product testers of the new platform, allowing athletes who opt-in opportunities to earn incremental dollars between March 2021-March 2022.

 

How It Works

AMP provides expanded earning opportunities to more Team USA athletes in three ways – including:
  1. A guaranteed base payment for group marketing rights
  2. New revenue streams such as royalty fee share compensation for consumer products through licensed merchandise
  3. Potential for incremental revenue via individual marketing deals
Based on the criteria, athletes can be eligible for:
  1. The full AMP pilot program - including group, licensing and individual marketing opportunities, OR
  2. Individual marketing opportunities.

Athletes earn a guaranteed base payment for group marketing rights for one year.

As part of this group marketing model, Team USA partners can use the name, image, and/or likeness of a minimum of three athletes in a group to show their support of Team USA. All athletes shown must be from different NGBs and shown collectively as Team USA. This model uses athletes’ existing name, image and likeness, and does not require additional time or commitment from the athlete beyond a potential initial photo shoot (where existing imagery may not exist).


ATHLETE PARTICIPATION PROCESS:

  1. Eligible athletes are invited to opt in (Jan.  2021)
  2. Athletes complete profile and contract, with opportunity to opt out of specific categories where they may have existing endorsement deals or personal conflicts, or, if they choose, where their NGB has a conflicting sponsor
  3. Athletes can pre-approve imagery (where such imagery exists)
  4. The base payment of $1,250  for one year of group marketing rights for the pilot program will be paid in two payments, on or before March 31, 2021 and within 30 days of the completion of an athlete's respective Games. Assuming the athlete maintains eligibility in the platform through the term, the athlete will receive both portions of their payment regardless of athlete use in creative materials and/or qualifying for the Games.
  5. Athletes will be notified of brand interest and use of imagery in any Group Marketing application
  6. Athletes will have the ability to modify their profile and availability throughout the pilot

 Athletes earn royalty fee sharing.

Athletes participating in Group Marketing may also opt in to Licensed Merchandise opportunities to earn additional funding when fans purchase official Team USA merchandise that features their name, image, or likeness.  Athletes will receive a royalty for their name or likeness.

Athletes can earn incremental revenue through endorsement deals with Team USA  brands and organizations.

Athletes can connect with Team USA brands, organizations and other partners for marketing opportunities. AMP makes the connection, and the athlete negotiates the payment and terms. Unlike the group model, individual marketing opportunities require additional time from the athlete. 


ATHLETE PARTICIPATION PROCESS:

  1. Eligible athletes are invited to opt in on a rolling basis (beginning March 2021)
  2. Athletes complete profile and contract, with opportunity to opt out of specific categories where they may have existing endorsement deals or personal conflicts, or, if they choose, where their NGB has a conflicting sponsor
  3. Ongoing opportunities to connect directly with Team USA organizations and partners for individual endorsement deals and marketing opportunities
  4. Athletes will have the ability to modify their profile and availability throughout the pilot

Eligibility

In order to gain valuable feedback on the pilot program, eligible athletes will be invited to serve as beta testers from March 2021-March 2022.

Athlete eligibility for the pilot program is determined by the prior year’s world championships or Operation Gold equivalent event by sport. Due to the uncertainty around COVID-19 and future event schedules, the most recent year’s events will be used.

Based on the criteria, athletes can be eligible for:

  1. The full AMP pilot program - including group, licensed merchandise and individual marketing opportunities, OR 
  2. Individual marketing opportunities.
FULL AMP PILOT PROGRAM

*Group marketing, licensed merchandise and individual marketing

Full AMP pilot program invitations will be sent to eligible athletes in January 2021. Eligible athletes include those who:

  • Finished in the top-eight individual event or top-six team event finishes in the most recent year’s world championships or equivalent Operation Gold event as agreed upon with each NGB (Olympic and Paralympic program events only) 

     

     
INDIVIDUAL MARKETING

Individual Marketing pilot invitations will be sent in March 2021. Eligible athletes include those who:

  • Competed in the most recent year’s world championships or equivalent Operation Gold event as agreed upon with each NGB (Olympic and Paralympic program events only) 
  • Have qualified for the Olympic or Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020
  • Have qualified for the Olympic or Paralympic Games Beijing 2022

     

Due to the uncertainty around COVID-19 and the disruptions experienced by some sports who haven’t had a recent Operation Gold event, the USOPC will work with NGBs/HPMOs to identify equivalent criteria using results that are available.

*Note: Group Marketing base payment will not be impacted should additional 2020-2021 events be canceled due to COVID-19. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What is group marketing and what are some examples of opportunities?
Group marketing allows Team USA partners to use the name, image, and/or likeness of a minimum of three athletes collectively in a group (Rule of 3) to show their support of Team USA. Partners are required to feature at least three athletes from three different NGB in any creative. Outside of possible production shoots, group marketing does not require athlete time and can include print, out of home, digital, social, TV and other creative mediums. Group marketing provides athletes with a guaranteed base payment for group marketing rights.

What is individual marketing and what are some examples of opportunities?
Individual marketing provides athletes the opportunity to earn incremental revenue through endorsement deals with Team USA brands and partners. Opportunities require athlete time and could include social posts, press interviews and podcasts, appearances and meet and greets, on-pack IP inclusion, and more. These agreements are short-term, often non-exclusive opportunities that do not replace annual exclusive endorsement deals.  Athletes set their desired price for opportunities and can approve or decline opportunities accordingly. Resources are available for athletes who want guidance in setting pricing based on industry best practices.

How will athletes be notified of any group marketing deals in which my name, image and likeness is featured? Are athletes able to opt out of the activation and if so, what is the timeline to do so?
Once an athlete has opted into a category, Team USA partners in those categories are able to access and select athlete’s IP for group marketing campaigns. Upon partner selection, athletes will receive a notification via the AMP platform indicating they have been selected for a group marketing activation. In addition, once a partner has finalized campaign elements and creative, athletes will receive a subsequent notification with information regarding the campaign.

At any point in time, athletes can either opt out of a particular category or opt out of AMP entirely (which may potentially impact the athlete receiving their full base payment). However, any “live” use cases where athletes have already been notified of their selection within group marketing will be permitted to continue through the length of the stated campaign period.

How does AMP work for athletes who have agents? Will agents have access to the AMP platform?
Athletes can indicate if they would like their agent to manage their profile on their behalf. During the enrollment process, athletes will have the opportunity to indicate the name and contact information for their agent, and their agent will receive an invitation to the platform that links to the athlete profile.

How and when will athletes be paid? 
The base payment of $1,250 for one year of group marketing rights for the pilot program will be paid in two payments, on or before March 31, 2021 and within 30 days of the completion of and athletes’ respective Games. Assuming the athlete maintains eligibility in the platform through the term, the athlete will receive both portions of their payment regardless of athlete use in creative materials and/or qualifying for the Games. Payment for individual marketing will be paid as agreed upon by the athlete and partner. Payment for licensed merchandise will be paid on a quarterly basis, based on product sold on the Team USA Shop.

Will there be a cap on usage for group marketing? How do I protect the value of my IP from overuse in group marketing?
No, for the pilot there will be no cap on usage. The goal for group marketing is for partners to access the broadest possible range of athletes and sports to tell a diversified story across the Olympic and Paralympic movements. During the pilot, we will monitor partner activation closely and, should partners over-use a particular athlete or sport in excess compared to other sports and athletes, we will include more specific and narrow parameters in future iterations of AMP guidelines.

How will feedback be collected during the pilot?
An Athlete-NGB AMP Pilot Working Group will help to evaluate and monitor the pilot, focusing on: (1) usage and diversity of usage (by partner, athlete and sport), (2) revenue generated for athletes (3) rights management, and (4) athlete, NGB and Team USA partner feedback.

Will alumni be involved in this effort?
Following the pilot program, the USOPC will look to incorporate alumni into AMP through individual marketing opportunities.

Contact

For more information or questions related to AMP, contact athletemarketing@usopc.org.