Sports media jobs are all about building bridges between sports teams and organizations, the public, and the news media. Fortunately, there are a lot of different kinds of bridges to be built, and each one requires talented, ambitious professionals to make the right calls and design the best communication solutions.
Read on to learn about some of the best sports media jobs and what it takes to excel at each one.
Top Sports Media Jobs: An In-Depth Look
The following sports media jobs are especially rewarding and come with a variety of benefits for those who have the right skills and industry experience, which can be gained by completing a leading sport management master’s program:
Media Relations Specialist
A sports media relations specialist seeks to foster a positive connection between a sports team and a variety of social media outlets, including TV broadcasters, radio personalities, newspapers, and digital media. Your job as a media relations specialist may involve directly communicating with these entities or managing others who handle the bulk of the interactions.
Your day-to-day responsibilities may involve connecting with members of the media over email, the phone, text messages, or in-person discussions. As a media relations manager, you would be making sure each member of your team is on top of the interactions they need to make and is keeping up with deadlines.
To excel at this job, you need excellent written and oral communication skills, a strong understanding of social, print, and radio media, and outstanding organizational skills.
As a sports editor, your job involves overseeing the production of printed and digital sports-related content, ensuring the company you work for shines a light on the right stories. You also have to make sure the work of your writers and producers is up to par.
Sports editors need to have a deep understanding of the current events—on and off the field—that may intersect with the world of athletics. These often dictate which stories get the most attention and gain the views your company needs to stay relevant. Because you’ll be managing a team of writers and creators, you need top-of-the-line communications skills as well as a good grasp of the tones, sentence structures, and formatting standards that make for an effective publication.
Marketing Manager or Assistant
The marketing profession is intimately connected with sports media skills because it’s all about connecting fans with players, teams, and brands. Although a marketing manager and assistant have different jobs, some of their core skills are the same. For instance, both need to have:
- A working understanding of what motivates people in different markets—and from different demographics—to make purchases
- Trends in pricing and other financial factors that may impact how you bring an item to market
- A basic understanding of supply and demand, as well as order fulfillment dynamics—all of which can influence how well items sell
- A broad understanding of macro and micro-economic factors, as well as socio-economic elements that often impact the success of a team’s product
In addition, a marketing manager has to know how to motivate their staff to stay on top of tasks and balance their workload without sacrificing productivity. Further, a marketing manager is often involved in training those they supervise, helping them improve core skills, such as communication and project management.
Writers are often at the center of sports media productions, primarily because they have to create either written content the public consumes or the outlines used by producers to craft effective finished products. As a writer, your job involves more than merely finding the right words; you have to create stories. This means you identify the literary roles inherent to each sports event, season, team journey, or player, and use them to make the situation reverberate in the hearts of your audience. Some of the core literary components of compelling stories that apply to sports stories, books, shows, documentary writing as well traditional writing include:
- A protagonist
- An antagonist
- A setting
- Helping characters
- The arc or series of events that drive the story, including exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, and resolution
In addition to story-telling skills, an effective writer has a good grasp of grammar and how to use grammatical conventions to create powerful writing. It’s not uncommon for a sports writer to become an editor at some point, so you will want to develop strong people skills, as well. The ability to communicate and interact with others is also necessary because some writers in the sports media arena are also journalists, so they need to interview and follow up with people at the center of sports stories.
A sports agent is the one who makes sure athletes get the pay they deserve for sponsorships and contracts. They also help carve how the public views an athlete, ensuring they're as marketable as possible.
This branch of sports management requires an in-depth understanding of how people react to the images and actions they're presented with—as well as how this impacts the earnings potential of the athlete you represent.
For instance, even though Pete Rose's name is often associated with someone who may forever be denied access to the Baseball Hall of Fame, his agent was still able to secure him a promotional deal with Skechers.1 While this may be an extreme example, it shows the difference an agent can make in the financial future of an athlete when they have the right skills.
Excel in Your Sports Media Career with KU
If you’re ready to get the advanced skills you need to connect fans and media outlets with their favorite teams, consider how an online master’s in sport management from an internationally respected athletic mainstay, like the University of Kansas, can help. You not only develop the abilities you need to succeed, but you also network with others, opening doors to exciting opportunities. Learn more by connecting with KU today.