In the buildup to Front Office Sports’ Brand Marketing Huddle at the LA Stadium Premiere Center on July 11, we’re introducing you to the huddle leaders who will be lending their expertise to the conversation.
Today, meet Paul Beckles: Director of Brand Partnerships at Athletes First Partners. Athletes First Partners is a global sales and marketing agency representing the National Basketball Players Association and the National Basketball Retired Players Association.
Beckles is a graduate of Indiana University of Pennsylvania and is currently pursuing an MBA through Purdue University. After college, Beckles joined the sales staff of the Philadelphia 76ers growing in responsibility throughout his five plus years with the organization. He also held positions with Learfield IMG College and Translation LLC before joining Athletes First Partners.
“I always gravitated to the revenue generation aspect of brand marketing,” Beckles says of his professional history. “It aligns with my competitive nature and allows me to creatively problem solve, develop impactful marketing campaigns, and collaborate with others.”
Through a strong sense of motivation and an ability to foster strong and productive relationships, Beckles has achieved a high level of success working with a number of NBA clients as well as the NFL, Champs Sports, and Nike over the course of his career. Beckles’ time working in the partnership space has also taught him the importance of creativity when it comes to achieving success.
“Take inspiration from other aspects of the industry, industries outside of your own and how people solve problems in those areas,” he says. “The amount of understanding that you have from a cultural standpoint can be very helpful in getting outside of a one-dimensional way of thinking and can lead to huge opportunities.”
In order to continue to grow, Beckles recommends that young sports professionals continue to learn and build an effective personal brand through contributions outside of your job description and networking.
“Develop your brand as some who is well versed in the areas that you are personally attached to. That’s a very big part of staying in tune with culture.” he says. “Bring all of the things you live into what you do every single day. There will constantly be opportunities to show how much you know about things other than what you’re supposed to be an expert in.”
Meet Paul and hear more of his thoughts on the current brand marketing space at the Front Office Sports Brand Marketing Huddle at the LA Stadium Premiere Center in Los Angeles, CA on July 11. For tickets and additional info, click here.