The Storytelling Trifecta: Connection

This week, we are highlighting the second pillar of 'The Storytelling Trifecta' for elevating women's sports: Connection. Women's sport is undergoing a transformation, and fostering connection is a key strategy to drive this change.


We need to create emotional connections to gain audience trust and investment. Highlights cater to existing fans but don't engage new audiences emotionally. The most powerful stories are human stories, which resonate universally through themes of success, failure, sacrifice, and ambition.

Sport has an endless pool of compelling, authentic human stories from athletes' firsthand experiences. Allowing athletes to speak honestly and authentically is crucial, especially for young, savvy audiences. If athletes appear insincere, it undermines both the athlete and the brand. Embracing authentic storytelling through athletes is a cost-effective way to drive emotional engagement and build lasting connections.

Audiences now expect their role models to take a stand on social issues. Well-known athletes like Meghan Rapinoe, known for her advocacy for LGBTQ+ rights and equality in sports, demonstrate this shift. Brands now see value in aligning with outspoken athletes whose values reflect positively on them. Companies like Nike, Samsung, and Subway readily partner with her, not just for her sports achievements but also for her social stance. Campaigns like Heineken's "Social Swap" with Jill Scott and Gary Neville, which highlighted social media trolling and inequality, which Jill was victim to, show the power of addressing contentious issues authentically. Brands gain trust and value by engaging in these conversations through their athlete ambassadors and it is an important part of the strategy.

Using athletes for storytelling allows for an 'always-on' strategy, keeping audiences engaged even between seasons. This continuous engagement keeps brands and partners in the news agenda, generating extra value year-round. An always-on approach using athlete content taps into the massive crossover between sports, entertainment, and lifestyle. Athletes like Serena Williams, who has expanded from tennis to fashion, bridge the gap between sports and fashion audiences. This dual influence benefits both her sports sponsors and fashion brands.

We need to create emotional connections to gain audiences' trust and investment...and the most powerful stories are human stories.

Similarly, the Stella McCartney partnership with Team GB and Adidas allows cross-communication between sports and fashion fans, enhancing both brands and Team GB’s reach. Athletes are the most authentic storytellers, and leveraging them effectively ensures continuous engagement across different audience verticals.

Watch the full recording of our Everything in Sport session - The Storytelling Trifecta: Harnessing Visibility, Connection, and Opportunity to Amplify Women's Sports.


We strive to highlight female athletes and their achievements. With access to over 7.5 million influencers, Story10 ensures authentic collaborations by connecting you with influencers who love your brand. We tailor your campaign, not only by platform but also by influencer type, maximising campaign reach and improving brand sentiment

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