Whether it be a new shirt or a season ticket deal, clubs need to get their message out to there to the masses.
A press release to the local media is an ideal option and is one which clubs take. However, with clubs often having more social media followers than the local newspapers have daily readers (showing both the growth in social media and the decline of the print media industry), it provides a huge scope for releasing news.
While a simple social media update and a post on the club website will suffice, some clubs like to go one further through video campaigns.
This is because videos have the potential to be shared and talked about, however sometimes they are not always talked about for the best reasons.
Below are just some video campaigns from football clubs that Inside The Game will review the success – or lack of…
Woody’s Got A New Bird
Described by The Mirror as one of “the worst football advert[s] ever”, Middlesbrough’s advert for their upcoming season ticket deadline certainly got people talking.
Jonathan Woodgate, of scoring an own goal and getting sent off on his Real Madrid debut fame, is quizzed by his Boro teammates George Friend and Ben Gibson over his “new bird”. Woodgate then tells them of the Boro Early Bird deal where they can save money on buying a club season ticket early and is then presented his season ticket from his “new bird” – a hawk (see what they did there?) – before walking off into the distance with the message “Woody & Early Bird 4eva”.
The video was picked up by the Daily Mail who weren’t too complimentary describing the video as “bizarre”, before adding “All this to say you could save yourself £65 if you buy an early bird Middlesbrough season card. A simple poster would have done the same job.” Maybe so but a simple poster wouldn’t have got the coverage that Woody’s Got A New Bird did, so is the joke instead on the Daily Mail who unbeknowingly advertised Middlesbrough’s season ticket campaign for free? We’d say so.
The Evening Gazette, Middlesbrough’s local paper, also reported on the video which shows that the campaign did reach its target audience – but the fact that the video was deleted from Middlesbrough’s YouTube channel may tell you that the club weren’t too happy with the reaction…
You can view the video: here
Vote for Carolyn
Carolyn Radford, Mansfield Town’s CEO, has an impressive CV. She has a politics degree from Durham University, she’s also a qualified lawyer, the youngest chief executive in the Football League and one of only five women in an executive position among the 92 league clubs. So, why shouldn’t she apply for a seat on the FA Council?
Instead of releasing a statement listing her credentials, she produced a tongue-in-cheek video campaign. It was a song parodying JFK’s presidential campaign video that was only intended to be seen by representatives at 72 EFL clubs. The video was then leaked to the press and ended up going viral.
The BBC, SkySports, The Telegraph, The Daily Mail and many other media outlets reported on the video and were all left slightly nonplussed about the campaign. This led to Carolyn doing the right move PR-wise by contacting clubs and the media with her side of the story via a statement. She told The Guardian that the whole experience was “quite mean-spirited” and it was completely “tongue-in-cheek”, “intended to be funny”, as well as adding that “I just wanted to show how old and stuffy the process had got. The other candidates just sent a sheet of paper saying: ‘I trust I can count on you to reelect me’.”
While Carolyn thought outside the box and did everything correct publicity wise, she didn’t get voted onto the FA council. Perhaps next time just sending out a sheet of paper saying ‘I trust I can count on you to elect me’ will do…
If you wish to listen to Carolyn’s warbling below; well it’s up to you, it’s up to you, it’s strictly up to you:
Come To Pools
Have you heard the one about the monkey dancing around a pub pretending to the Go Compare man? No? Well, in that case, you can’t be a supporter of Hartlepool United.
Hartlepool were planning on selling season tickets for £100 – providing they sold 5,000 season tickets. There were adverts all over the town, the local paper and regular updates online but one got more media attention than the rest:
A low budget video had club mascot H’Angus singing about the season ticket offer to the tune of the Go Compare theme around a local pub. The video made headlines in the Daily Mirror, Talksport and the Hartlepool Mail.
The video attracted over 35,000 views and the club went onto sell over 5,300 season tickets – a club record. Although we can’t say for sure if all of them had the song stuck in their head for as along as we did, we can describe the video campaign as a success.
So, as shown from the examples above, a video campaign is a fantastic way to get your deal talked about providing you think outside of the box. However, if this is something you’re opting for, then please ensure you have thick skin…