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The biggest event of the year in college sports concludes this month as national champions are crowned in men’s and women’s basketball, and hundreds of thousands of college athletes are entering the influencer marketplace for the first time. College athletes now find themselves attractive candidates in the fast growing influencer marketing arena. Industry experts estimate that this market grew to a $13.8 billion industry in 2021, with NCAA athlete advertising alone predicted to grow to $1 billion a year within five years. With influencer marketing potentially providing a 5x return on investment, many brands are eager to get into the industry, but it doesn’t come without risks. With the FTC Commissioner taking a closer look at the use of influencers for marketing, student athletes and brands should take care when entering into the influencer marketing arena. See, “Statement of Comm’r Rohit Chopra Regarding the Endorsement Guides Review,” Comm’n File No. P204500 (Feb. 12, 2020) (https://bit.ly/3D19Utx).
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By Harry Sandick and George Carotenuto
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