In a conversation with Boardroom, learn how the FOX Sports host built a successful approach to endorsements, partnerships, and building a futuristic investment portfolio.
Co-hosting one of television’s biggest sports shows has perks. Daily, millions of eyes are locked in on news updates from Joy Taylor during the FOX Sports talk show The Herd with Colin Cowherd.
For Taylor, the grind doesn’t end with The Herd with Colin Cowherd airing Monday through Friday, nor withThe Joy Taylor Show on FOX Sports Radio every Saturday afternoon. Rather, Taylor is constantly curating her growing portfolio of investments like a boss, securing the bags that make the most sense for her brand.
“It really just depends exactly on what the product is,” Taylor told Boardroom. “What the company is, who they’re trying to reach with what they’re looking for on [return on investment]. What makes sense is either short-term partnership or long-term partnership, so I just kind of look into their marketing, what kind of company they are, who they’ve worked with before, and if it makes sense for us to work together.”
From conventional business ventures to the world of crypto, Taylor’s scope is ambitious. Her likeness is already featured on an NFT on the MetaFans platform, and she plans to continue to educate herself on the metaverse and Web3, as well as the future financial benefits of cryptocurrencies, in the months and years to come.
Brand synergy is only one component of how Taylor approaches her business. The money has to make sense, and there has to be some flexibility regarding exclusivity. And Taylor’s eyes, the base rate an ambassador like herself charges a company should not be treated as something that’s always up for negotiation.
“Once you’re in the business for a certain amount of time, your rate is something you don’t want to compromise, so that’s No. 1,” the media personality said. “We’re not volunteers. If it’s something you’re supposed to be paid for, what your rate [is] really matters.”
So, what determines that rate? In the words of DJ Khaled and Fat Joe, “Yesterday’s price is not today’s price.” In other words, momentum is everything. A spike in social interactions from a viral moment, for instance, can amount to leverage to drive up your value.
A key priority of Taylor’s is showing brands consistency, especially in terms of social interactions with any deals she’s involved in. That’s the sort of thing that leaves no doubt that she’s worth the price.
“If you do a campaign with someone who’s really successful, that changes things, because that means that you actually have the reach and interaction that companies are looking for,” she explained. “Different people go through different waves on our side of things when it comes to advertisers being attracted to them. The influencer market kind of exploded, and people were charging crazy amounts and [brands were] not getting the return.”
Gone are the days when the latest emerging Instagram or Tik Tok star can strong-arm a brand that scrambles to find a famous face for its campaign. Now, brands have fixed campaigns with a much more carefully determined expectations for return on investment. And with the exponential growth of consumer analytics, both brands and ambassadors have a detailed view of the successes or letdowns of their collaborative campaigns than they’ve ever had.
And as the market has found more stable, less over-reactive footing, Taylor has forged a solid foundation of her own.
“I have some ongoing relationships with different companies. America’s Best Racing and I have had an ongoing relationship for several years. But outside of that, it’s flexible,” she said, “depending on when and what people want to advertise.”
As new paths and new tools emerge on the marketplace, Taylor’s not sitting on the sidelines as opportunities emerge.
Success on Social
Taylor’s eminence on television is solidified. However, she’s garnered a similar reputation as a prolific, well-regarded voice follow across social media platforms. Twitter is where she particularly thrives — clapping back at trolls and body-shamers, for instance, or really anyone who dares to put down hard-working women in the industry. (She recently stood up for Cleveland Browns beat writer Mary Kay Cabot against this January tweet from Baker Mayfield.)
Taylor’s relationship with Twitter extends beyond simply sending timely, well-worded tweets day after day, however. The Twitter Sports branch, which was overseen by TJ Adeshola until his promotion to Head of Content Partnerships earlier this month, highlighted its special relationship with Taylor during February’s Super Bowl LVI festivities. She appeared at the game in a custom pair of Nike Air Force 1s showcasing her Twitter handle.
“I have a great relationship with Twitter. I also happen to love Twitter,” Taylor said. “I have some ongoing relationships with different companies. America’s Best Racing and I have had an ongoing relationship for several years. But outside of that, it’s flexible — depending on when and what people want to advertise.”
Taylor prides herself on cultivating strong, positive relationships in the dual worlds of television and social media. Although they can be remarkably different in terms of audience and overall style, her personal brand is one in which both consistently meet in the middle.
Television allows her to showcase her sports knowledge and command of linear TV. In contrast, platforms like Twitter and Instagram enable Taylor to show off her personality more candidly (and compel bad-faith internet trolls to delete their accounts).
Enhancing her cultural and economic footprint is a worthy pursuit. But above all, Taylor wants to build a platform that allows her to make a lasting philanthropic impact.
Through the Joy Taylor Foundation, she works to support the homeless and survivors of domestic violence and promote education and youth empowerment initiatives in communities that are often overlooked and under-served.
The organization doesn’t have a staff or facility, which presents a unique opportunity for potential donors. It allows the non-profit to nimbly develop and produce projects catered to their mission without worrying about a mess of bureaucracy or overhead costs.
“It’s very strategic when it comes to [forming partnerships with the foundation] as well,” Taylor said of her philanthropic apprach. “We’ve had a lot of great partnerships so far, and you know, obviously continuing to grow. You want to be open to people participating, but also you need to be selective because it is a non-profit.”
It’s a different kind of mission than the one she’s embarked on as an investor and brand partner, but her discerning eye and sense of self-awareness serve her just the same.
Currently, the foundation has partnered with Beauty 2 the Streetz — feeding more than 400 people in the streets of L.A. and supplying showers, hair wash and hair coloring products, make-up, and wigs. But the most important byproduct of any partnership is human connection.
Inspiring the Next Generation
Taylor’s big-picture dream? To become an inspiration to women in sports the same way Oprah Winfrey and Howard Stern inspired her to pursue a career in media.
Her message is simple: “Whatever makes you unique, lean into that.”
She encourages the next generation to never sacrifice individuality, stand firm in uniqueness, and believe that brands will not only recognize that, but value it.
Just as Taylor wants to take young women under her wing, she is proud of her women colleagues who have managed to establish a strong voice in an industry dominated by men. Her Twitter account is equally full of constant, uplifting exchanges with unsung dreamers determined to take flight in the same way she has.
It’s in these individuals she interacts with every day that Taylor hopes to make a different kind of investment — one that leads not to a monetary return, but visibility and self-actualization.
That may just turn out to be her greatest investment yet.