H&R Block
A Fair Shot


H&R Block


A Fair Shot

In 2021, the new NCAA name, image, likeness (NIL) rule turned college athletes everywhere into small-business owners. It quickly became clear these new revenue streams would lead to new and complicated taxes. Rumors swirled around seven-figure deals for QBs who hadn’t played a quarter in a college game. But women college athletes were not getting the same opportunities as men. Male athletes received 67 percent of the total compensation in collegiate sports leaving female college athletes at only 33 percent We quickly saw an opportunity for H&R Block to help women, to become the NIL tax authority and to show up in cultural conversation like they never had before. And it worked.

A partnership, a platform for pay equity.

We launched “A Fair Shot” on March 1, 2022, announcing $1 million in sponsorships for female collegiate athletes starting with basketball stars Caitlin Clark and Zia Cooke — leaders on and off the court. The full female roster was built and revealed over the following weeks, spanning a variety of sports, universities and geographic locations. Each athlete was asked to use her voice to authentically speak about equity in college athletics and their NIL experiences. Not only were they receptive to a sponsorship, they were passionate about the path they were helping pave for the next generation. As the athletes announced their partnerships with H&R Block on their social platforms, it grabbed the attention of teammates, coaches and fans. Equally important, the campaign grabbed the attention of a purpose-driven Gen Z audience, the audience most important for the continued growth of H&R Block.

#AFairShotWithBlock * #AFairShotWithBlock *

New money, old problems.

The conversation extended to H&R Block’s owned channels with bite-sized NIL facts via social, tax tips on H&R Block’s Tax Information Center and our athlete partners posting tax- and equity-related content to their own feeds.

A hashtag challenge accepted by millions.

The program culminated in early April as college basketball championship weekend became the topic of conversation. H&R Block invited people to “Imagine a World” in which women get everything they deserve via a hashtag challenge (#AFairShotWithBlock) featuring Zia and shot by a female director, Kat Keene of Caviar. The challenge rang true. Our sponsored athletes followed suit, and TikTokers across the country joined in, creating their own videos.

Imagine a World * Hashtag Challenge. *


The program generated significant results positioning H&R Block as a modern and inclusive company breaking out of financial-only media into sports and lifestyle media to make a cultural difference. Media coverage resulted in more than 1 billion impressions, the TikTok Hashtag Challenge racked up more than 10 billion video views, exceeding benchmarks. Net trust and favorability for the brand jumped double digit points with Gen Z, showing positive engagement with a younger audience.