Emerging brands and veterans alike strive to have their brand stick out above the rest. It is imperative that a brand differentiates itself from the field in order to survive. Your brand is your legacy; the stronger it is, the stronger your business will be. Speaking of veterans, perennial all-star Carmelo Anthony cited business being a large reason that he stayed in New York, in order to grow his own brand. He has spent a few seasons there, being able to develop not only basketball roots, but build a strong business foundation, which he hopes to continue to solidify before branching it out.
The organization’s name is “Melo 7 Tech Partners,” according to a recent Bleacher Report article (2014). The company has a primary emphasis on investing in tech companies. He would like to see this venture grow, with more priority being placed in this area after the curtains close on his basketball career. Of course, Melo emphasized that the Knicks are the priority at the moment, but his brand will stem from what he does both now and in the future. “’I want to brand myself as the digital athlete… I really want to be the pioneer for that digital athlete…’” (Best, 2014).
When looking at the recent history of sports stars, we have seen a number become more business oriented, as they fully acknowledge that there is a life after their profession (which only lasts 10-15 years usually). Fellow NBA superstar LeBron James is known for his business ventures, striving to garner as much capital as he possibly can, potentially even earning more off the court at some point. They realize that they won’t be able to push themselves to the limit everyday for their worth, as there comes a time when that isn’t possible anymore. They must establish a legacy, which comes with a credible and recognizable brand.
Athletes take notes and advice from business owners in a number of instances; in this case, the latter could use some consulting from the likes of Carmelo Anthony and others with similar visions. You can slave tirelessly over your desk, on your phone, or on the computer for days, weeks, months, or years at a time to achieve what you are striving for. However, what happens when that stops? If not done correctly, then those achievements will stop coming when you stop working. This is where your brand steps in.
Solidifying your brand and building this legacy will allow your achievements to work for you when you’re done. Paying attention to and accentuating the uniqueness of your brand is what will allow your business to not only survive, but to thrive throughout the many tests that will come along. Or, as in this case, it will be a springboard to the next accomplishment that is being eyed. Melo is showing that he is focused on building his brand now so that the organization he is pioneering will succeed long term. Spend the effort needed, and then some, to build your brand with your business; this brand can then return the favor during the subsequent phase.
Source: Best, Neal. “Carmelo Anthony Says Business a Big Reason he Stayed with Knicks.” Bleacher Report. (2014)