How Carli Lloyd Became America’s Newest Marketing Star

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Carli Lloyd is sports marketing’s woman of the hour. Lloyd came into the World Cup Final as one of the USWNT’s most productive players, but lacked the popularity of the team’s marketing stars, Alex Morgan and Abby Wambach.

If the average American sports fan couldn’t recognize Lloyd prior to last night’s match, that has quickly changed. Lloyd scored three goals, won the Adidas Golden Ball – awarded to the tournament’s most outstanding player – and led the U.S. in a rout over Japan to claim the World Cup title. Today, Lloyd is the toast of #sportsbiz Twitter and has been featured in ESPN interviews and analysis from the network’s sports business expert, Darren Rovell.

Carli Lloyd’s Social Media Explosion

Lloyd’s big performance earned plenty of respect over Twitter and digital media. Lloyd added 50 thousand Twitter followers during the match and Rovell reported that her personal website crashed due to a flood of traffic following her second goal. But Lloyd’s social media explosion wasn’t limited to the final match. Instead, the midfielder’s social following grew steadily throughout the tournament before spiking after the June 30th win over Germany and the ensuing explosion during last night’s Final.

Social Media Follower Growth
Twitter Followers, June 15 (day prior to final Group match): 253 thousand
Twitter Followers, July 6th (Following World Cup Final win): 381 thousand

Instagram Followers, June 15: 127 thousand
Instagram Followers, July 6: 363 thousand

Opendorse estimated price, June 15
Tweet: $1,436.03
Tweet with image: $2,154.04

Opendorse estimated price, July 6
Tweet: $2,137.83
Tweet with image: $3,206.75


Niagara Water Wins Big With Carli Lloyd, USWNT, IZEA, and Opendorse

Niagara Water came to Opendorse on June 19 with plans to amplify its #GirlUp campaign with social media endorsements from players competing on the U.S Women’s National Team. Ultimately, Carli Lloyd, Shannon Boxx, Christie Rampone, and Megan Rapinoe were pitched, on-boarded, and activated.

Each athlete – with the exception of Shannon Boxx who only tweeted – provided a Tweet and Facebook post from their personal accounts containing Niagara Water’s #GirlUp video. The messages went live on Wednesday, July 1, following the #USWNT’s win over Germany to advance to the World Cup Final.

With the help of IZEA and Opendorse, Niagara Water inserted its campaign and brand into a national conversation at a time when the players’ popularity had never been higher.

Had Niagara Water waited until after the World Cup win, it may have missed the window of peak national interest and certainly would have paid a higher price for each endorsement, especially Lloyd’s. Her star power has spiked, but the rest of the Women’s National Team isn’t far behind. In total, USWNT players gained almost 1 million Twitter followers and 2.4 million Instagram followers from June 15 to July 6.


Lloyd’s Marketing Future

Prior to her World Cup performance, Lloyd’s only marketing deals were from Nike, Usana Health Sciences, and Visa. Her spike in marketability didn’t come as a surprise according to Lloyd’s agent, Josh Weil, who was quoted in today’s ESPN feature:

“A lot of what we were going to do was going to be predicated on how the World Cup went,” Weil told “So we’re in pretty good shape now.”
Weil said he is in advanced talks with an auto company as well as a watch company that has never before done anything with soccer.

“I would like to see some deals come through with top USOC or IOC sponsors ahead of the Olympics: Bridgestone, AT&T, McDonald’s — those types of companies,” Weil said.

Lloyd has particularly charged Weil with looking for creative deals in the training and nutritional space.

“She’s all about her training and what she puts in her body, so anything in that area, including food, health and wellness, is what she is always focused on,” Weil said.

At 32, Lloyd will probably never be an endorsement powerhouse like her teammate Alex Morgan, but her performance on the biggest stage has certainly set her up for marketing success. Want to learn how you can work with athletes like Carli Lloyd? Check out Opendorse or schedule a time to talk to our athlete endorsement experts.

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