Writing Press Releases in Football – A How To

A key role of a PR practitioner is media relations. In football, as well as publishing statements on the club’s official website, they will also be distributed to the national, regional and local press.

These statements will be written for news such as: a new signing, a managerial appointment or the changing of a club badge. Below are some examples:

New Signing

Managerial Appointment

Change of Club Badge

After Inside The Game’s previous post on a how to in PR crisis management (read here), we will now offer a guide as for how to write a press release.Screenshot_2017-12-11-14-11-28-1

Typically, a press release that is being distributed to the media will consist of seven or eight paragraphs and one or two quotes. At the top of the release, you need to write the date, your name, the subject header and the page number. After this, you need to write NEWS RELEASE to state that it is for publication as well as writing your headline before writing the actual statement.

Your intro should be a basic summary of what the statement is going to be about and a maximum of 25 words. The next two paragraphs should expand on the intro by offering more information. The next paragraph will be a quote from someone who is central to story – in football, it will be someone like the CEO, chairman or manager. This will be either one or two paragraphs. The paragraph after the quotes will be some more relevant information. After this, there will be a second quote from someone who is also linked to the story. It will then end with a final piece of information.

After you have finished writing the statement, you must write “ENDS” along with your contact details at the bottom for the journalist in question.

Below, Inside The Game has written a basic template on how to write up the announcement of a new club manager. And with how often club’s chop and change their managers – you’ll definitely end up writing one!

11/12/17     Mr. P McOfficer

Subject Header: Club announces new manager     Page: 1

NEWS RELEASE

HEADLINE: [?] named as new [?] first-team manager

[?] FC are pleased to announce that [?] has taken over as first-team manager on a [?] year contract.

The club had a rigorous selection process for a new manager and [?] stood out with his wealth of experience in both managing at the higher and lower levels of the Football League.

[?] has previously managed at [?], [?] and [?]. He achieved promotion with both [?] and [?] in [?] and [?] respectively; as well as winning the League Manager of the Year Award in [?].

Speaking to the official site, chairman [?] welcomed him to the club by saying: “QUOTE 1.”

“QUOTE 1.”

The new manager has also named [?] as his assistant coach.

After being named as the club’s new manager, [?] also spoke of his delight: “QUOTE 2.”

His first game will be next Saturday’s game against [?] and we would like to welcome him to the club.

ENDS

Contact Info: 07xxxxxxxxx

The club’s press officer will then send out the statement to the media for publication. It takes practice but if you follow the above guidelines, you’re good to go!

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The Price You Pay When Twitter Goes Wrong featuring Rio Ferdinand, Ashley Cole and others

Top footballing stars have become their own personal brands on Twitter with some boasting millions of followers.

Rio Ferdinand, one of the first high profile footballers to have a Twitter account, has 9.7million followers as of December 2017. His former Manchester United team mates Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo have 16.7million and 65.3million respectively.

This has allowed interaction between players and fans that has never been seen before. High profile footballers now have PR people looking after their Twitter account but a downside has been that when footballers have left in charge of their own account, they have been fined for what they have posted in the heat of the moment.

Social media guidelines and codes of conduct are set for club officials, but what is the price you pay when you break them?

Since 2011, The FA have made over £350,000 in fines over something a footballer has tweeted.

In 2012, Ashley Cole was left reeling over an FA decision that labelled him as an unreliable witness and in “the heat of the moment” (his words), he tweeted “Hahahahaa, well done #fa I lied did I, #BUNCHOFTWATS”. The FA saw this as “improper and bringing the game into disrepute,” and fined the left-back a record £90,000 – that’s £2,045 per character. It led then Chelsea boss Roberto di Matteo to realign the strict social media policy to the players at the club. A good move – if not a bit too little, too late.

Rio Ferdinand was the first player to be banned thanks to a tweet. He responded to a tweet where he called the Twitter users mother a ‘sket’. The FA took a dim view on this and ordered him to attend an education programme, as well giving him a £25,000 fine and a three match ban for his troubles – something that Ferdinand described as “ludicrous”.  Three-time Premier League winner Robert Huth has also been banned due to explicit and indecent comments he made on Twitter – after admitting the charge, he received a £15,000 fine, a two match ban and had to attend a mandatory education course like the aforementioned Ferdinand.

Nile Ranger is a controversial character and he himself found himself fined for his words on Twitter. After admitting to a charge of making homophobic comments on the social media site, The FA fined Ranger £6,000 and warned him about his future conduct.

The FA have said to all footballers that comments on social media sites which make “reference to a person’s ethnic origin, colour, race, nationality, faith, gender, sexual orientation or disability may be considered aggravated and attract a higher disciplinary sanction.”

So what should clubs and players do to prevent this from happening in the future? Clubs should remind players of previous fines that have been handed out, The FA’s viewpoints on such tweets and have social media guidelines in place – like Chelsea. And as for the players, it’s simple – think before you tweet because you could end up losing your positive reputation and not just some cash.

Crisis Management in Football PR: A How To

According to Simon Banks (2002), the football industry is often “facing a crisis everyday” and this is where crisis management comes into play.

There are many options you can take in a crisis situation; there’s an apology, a no comment, actions to put something right, people have even lost their jobs as a result – just ask former England boss Sam Allardyce…

But when the shit hits the fan, what should a football club do?

First of all, do not go for the no comment approach. Jocelyn Broder (2011) describes no comment as the two worst words that a PR practitioner can use and that “you may as well say ‘guilty as charged,’ because that’s how that phrase is most often interpreted.”

Similarly, don’t go down the route that League One club Oldham Athletic went who released a statement to say they were not going to be making a statement of the possibility of Ched Evans signing for the club. (Yes, that really happened!)

Instead, remember these few things. One, get three key messages to the press outlined immediately. These key points should be significant and newsworthy.

Two, prepare yourself in advance for any anticipated questions from a journalist.

Thirdly, remember your ABCs when being interviewed by a journalist. Apologise, Bridge and Communicate. These mean: Answer the question by setting your agenda. Bridge, this is linking your answer to your key message by using words such as “meanwhile, therefore, and”. And lastly, Communicate your key messages.

And finally, when releasing a statement to the press: remember to express regret that the crisis has happened, then give your reason as to why it happened and give a remedy of how you plan to fix it.

This was the approach taken by Wayne Rooney’s PR team when he was sentenced for drink driving in September 2017. In his statement, he apologised profusely, stated that his reason was a “unforgiveable [sic] lack of judgement” and that his remedy was to make amends through his community service.

Good luck… you might well need it!

 

When The Cameras Came To Town: Big Ron Manager, Orient: Club For a Fiver, Next Goal Wins – Is There a PR Benefit?

Football clubs allowing cameras in their dressing room for a fly-on-the-wall documentary can be of great benefit. For example; cash strapped clubs can make a lot of money out of it, it can show the club in a good light if they have previously had bad PR and managers get a chance to show their insight. If it’s something a press officer gets an inquiry about, it is something they should seriously consider.

However if it becomes car crash TV, it is a dream scenario for the film producers but a nightmare for the club’s press team.

Professional PR body CIPR defined public relations as “the discipline which looks after reputation”. This post will look at how reputations can be won or lost by doing fly-on-the-wall documentaries and the pros and cons, PR wise, of press officers agreeing to one.

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Alarm bells should have rang when Sky TV offered Peterborough United the limelight in Big Ron Manager (2006). Sky had previously set their sights at Swindon Town who spent four weeks filming at the Wiltshire club before being asked to leave by the management.

However, the offer of £100,000 and the chance of former Manchester United manager Ron Atkinson coming in as a football troubleshooter appeared to be too good to turn down for the debt-ridden club.

What followed was a six-episode documentary of pure car crash TV.

What was shown was rookie manager Steve Bleasdale hopelessly out of his depth, players fighting in the dressing room, Bleasdale not getting along with his players or Atkinson, the club’s poor finances being highlighted and not to mention Bleasdale offering an opposition fan out for a fight.

Bleasdale eventually ended up resigning on camera just an hour before kick-off. It was Bleasdale’s first job in football, he has only had two since and hasn’t worked in the game since 2009. His current whereabouts are unknown as he has kept a low profile since the show but his name is still remembered thanks to the infamous documentary.

However one positive did come out of the show, it inspired businessman Darragh MacAnthony to purchase the club and under new ownership and management, Peterborough achieved back-to-back promotions in 2008 and 2009.

Bleasdale isn’t the only manager to have destroyed his reputation in a football documentary. John Sitton was filmed in Orient: Club For a Fiver (1995) sacking club captain Terry Howard at half-time before offering a player out for a fight.

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Sitton struggled to get work in football after the documentary on Leyton Orient and now works as a cab driver in London. His “being your f***ing dinner” line in the below video is one of the most known infamous quotes in football and is still remembered over 20 years later.

It’s totally understandable to turn down a request, if the subject of the film is just to show how bad you are. After all, imagine what your reputation must be like if you’ve never won a game. Also, imagine if your side has the world record for a biggest defeat in an international game. Step forward, American Samoa…

The American Samoan FA had turned down numerous requests for documentaries, until the directors of Next Goal Wins (2014) came along whose narrative was to show the team’s never say die attitude.

As the documentary continues, the side loses their reputation of being a joke team but of being a strong community that play purely for the love of the game and not the money in a heart-warming tale.

The documentary ends (spoiler alert!) with the nation winning their first ever game and moving up to their highest ever world ranking; shedding their tag of perennial strugglers – all caught on film. The side still has a cult following due to the documentary.

All three examples have share one key message, if you have a poor reputation and you genuinely think it will enhance it (like American Samoa) then a documentary is a must but please give it careful consideration because imagine the difficult task of being a press officer at a club where your manager was filmed offering a player out for a fight. They all serve as an important reminder that reputations can years to build and only seconds to destroy.

Note: For anyone interested in any of the three documentaries; Big Ron Manager and Orient: Club for a Fiver are both available to watch on YouTube. Next Goal Wins is available to watch on Netflix.

There’s Only One Rex Secco: A look at successful PR stunts surrounding football

With an estimated 3.5 billion fans worldwide, football is the most watched sport in the world. With so many supporters, it’s only natural that the beautiful game will attract publicity stunts. Inside The Game will look at three examples of PR stunts surrounding football that worked out brilliantly for their client.

There’s Only One Rex Secco (Or Is There?)

Social media influencers The Social Chain run such several Twitter accounts which have a reach of over 300 million people. Their website states that they “create social-first strategy […] that is brought to life by innovative design and video production.” And when they created a campaign to gain coverage for Soccerex, it caused a bit of a stir.

What followed was their in-house accounts putting out tweets about a teenage footballing star Rex Secco who had been linked with a multi million pound move to Arsenal.

Secco’s name began trending on Twitter, which created headlines in The Sun, The Metro and The Mirror. There was just one problem: Rex Secco doesn’t exist, his name is an anagram of Soccerex. When the hoax came to light it created huge national coverage for both Soccerex and The Social Chain, which just goes the power of social media and online influencers.

Let’s Hope They Can Hold Onto a Lead!

In 2014, Dogs Trust Leeds had eight puppies who were in need of a new home after their owner was no longer able to take care of them.

How did the dog’s charity get this message out the public? Well, it just so happened to be a few weeks before the 2014 World Cup in Brazil and they decided to name the puppies after members of the England squad.

These names included: Jordan Hounderson, Jack Russell Wilshere, Phil Wagielka and our personal favourite, Spaniel Sturridge.

Their team created a video of the pups playing with a football which was sent out and used by the local press:

The story reached its target audience by appearing in local newspapers such as Wetherby News, Harrogate Advertiser and The Ripon Gazette, as well getting national coverage in The Guardian and ITV News.

This was a simple, yet clever PR technique which achieved its goal and with the 2018 World Cup soon coming up, PR practitioners should be putting their thinking caps on for a campaign surrounding it.

A Crisp Finish

Another PR stunt surrounding the 2014 World Cup came from Pringles.

They created a 17ft long football boot made out of 1,500 cans of Pringles which was pictured outside landmarks such as Big Ben and The London Eye.

The idea came about when it was revealed that market research (an essential PR tool) showed that 50% of British football fans have a match day superstition. What this led to was the boot being blessed by a priest outside the holy grail of English football, Wembley Stadium.

The boot was then put on display in the National Football Museum in Manchester where fans were told that touching the boot could bring good luck to the England national team.

The boot created great coverage for Pringles and the National Football Museum with the story appearing in the Manchester Evening News, The Birmingham Mail and The Telegraph. Unfortunately, the boot didn’t bring any luck to the England team who got knocked out in the group stages failing to win a single game.

Inside The Game has also written an article on bad PR moves in football, read it here.

PR Own Goals featuring Bayern Munich, The FA and Chesterfield FC

The role of a press officer can be seen as to protect and/or enhance the reputation of their respective client. Sometimes though, media campaigns or press releases don’t go to plan and can make the company look foolish. Below are three examples of when in football, club press officers seriously missed the target.

The FA on The England’s Women National Team

Working in a sport side’s press office when your team is playing well is an ideal environment.

England’s women national team finished third in the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup – their best performance ever in the tournament – and, as a result, The FA will have had lots of positive press because of it.

Well, that was until upon the squad’s arrival home from the tournament.

The FA tweeted and wrote in the intro of their report on their website that the players could “now return to being mothers, partners and daughters.” This was met with wide-spread criticism with people calling it sexist and condescending.

Comedian Rufus Hound tweeted: That FA tweet is brilliant. Look how totally not sexist we are to all those dollybirds!

The tweet was swiftly deleted and the website intro was reworded before The FA issued an apology.

They said in a statement that: “The full story was a wider homecoming feature attempting to reflect the many personal stories within the playing squad […] However, we understand that an element of the story appears to have been taken out of context and the opening paragraph was subsequently revised to reflect that fact,” which shows that you always proofread what you write because a positive atmosphere at your company can soon turn into a sour one because of your actions.

A new signing? There’s an app for that

In 2012, German giants Bayern Munich published on their club website that they had signed a “spectacular name” and told fans they could watch the unveiling on the club’s Facebook page at lunchtime.

Club forums and social media were awash with rumours as to who the new signing was.

What followed was over 5,000 angry comments from fans. Why? Because there was no signing at all. What Bayern fans were greeted to was a photo of their Facebook profile picture and name to appear on a club shirt. A video message appeared saying “Dear fans, you probably already noticed that we did not sign a new player. This app is for our fans to show the importance of you to our club.”

The announcement was simply to unveil a new mobile phone app and the fans were furious. An apology from Bayern was later posted which received just over 3,000 comments; some defending the club, others who were still not happy.

This should remind club press officers that they should think if they were a fan of the club, how would they like to receive the news?

It just goes to show that even the biggest clubs in the world can get it wrong.

No signings please, we’re Chesterfield

Last season, Chesterfield FC hit the headlines over a fixed raffle which ended up causing a club official to resign. Skip forward a few months later and the League Two club had another PR disaster on their hands.

The Spireites’ director posted a statement on the club website in September 2017 saying that the club would no longer accept requests for the signing of any club merchandise. They also added that all members of staff had been advised to adhere to this policy.

Despite online backlash, the club didn’t back down and later reaffirmed their stance to the local press.

With the club struggling on field, it is truly bizarre as to why someone at the club thought this was a good idea at a time when you need the fans on your side the most – something to consider the next time you’re writing a press release.

NOTE: Inside The Game has since written a post on what to do in a crisis situation, read it here.

Think before you tweet – featuring Andy Carroll, Barcelona and… Newport County

Twitter is a fantastic tool which allows for footballers to engage with fans in ways which have never been seen before. Nowadays, players have press and PR training meaning they are media savvy but mishaps can and will happen. One reason for this is because Twitter has been around since early 2006 and with how good the search option is on the website, anything you posted years ago can be found instantly and that’s often where problems can arise.

Below, Inside The Game looks at some examples of old tweets that came back to haunt footballers and see how the issue was dealt with.

Hired and fired – all within 24 hours

When it comes to fierce football rivalry, sometimes an apology just won’t cut it.

Just ask Sergi Guardiola who profusely apologised when his old anti-Catalonia tweets were found when he signed for Catalonia-based side Barcelona B in 2015.

Two years before he signed for the club, he posted a tweet which translated as “f*ck Catalonia,” another were he called a user a “Catalonian whore” and tweets showing his support for bitter rivals Real Madrid.IMG_1360

Guardiola said to the press that those tweets were a joke from a friend who stole his phone and that he had no idea the the tweets even existed, before apologising. However that wasn’t good enough for Barca who fired the striker just hours after joining the club’s ‘B’ team.

That may – or may not – seem harsh but it isn’t surprising considering the club is known to mix sport and politics, along with the fact that fans will not take to a player who effectively told them to “f*ck off” so, in this scenario, it can definitely be argued this was a good move from Barcelona to terminate his contract.

Guardiola said to the press if he were in the club’s position he would have done the same. He is now plying his trade for second-tier Spanish side Cordoba and now longer has a Twitter account. A wise move.

Poyet v Carroll

In football, teammates come and go and you never know who you’re going to be sharing a pitch with. If only a 16-year-old Diego Poyet, now 22, had thought about that when tweeting about Andy Carroll.

When Poyet was in Charlton’s academy in 2012, Andy Carroll was struggling to live up to his £35million transfer fee at Liverpool.  Diego, son of Gus, must have thought he would never line-up alongside Carroll when posted tweets calling him a ‘donkey’ along with posting:

I went to Subway and asked for the greasiest, biggest and most expensive sub they had. They game [sic] me Andy Carroll.

Three years later, when Poyet signed for West Ham United, he teamed up alongside none other than… yep, you guessed it – Andy Carroll. It’s a funny old game, isn’t it?

That old tweet was unearthed and hit 500 retweets before it was swiftly deleted by Poyet. An apology from Diego ensued but fortunately, Carroll saw the funny side posing in a photo of him jokingly putting Poyet in a headlock.

So, alls well and ends well but all this could have been easily avoided if he followed the advice of Cathy Wood, who helps to media train young footballers, who told Inside The Game that people should “close down any accounts you no longer use or set up when you were younger.” Good advice.

Welcome to Newport, it’s been waiting for you (to paraphrase Taylor Swift)

When striker Padraig Amond played away at Newport in the 2016/17 season, he wasn’t too impressed with the state of the pitch. During the same season, a Europa League game in Russia took place; Twitter was in a frenzy over the state of the pitch which led Amond to tweet:

It was just around this time that Newport County turned it around on the pitch – both metaphorically and literally. County made an escape act that Harry Houdini would’ve been proud of, securing survival in League Two on the final day of the season.

Three months later, Amond signed for Newport from Hartlepool and his old tweet picked up a bit of traction and hit over 300 retweets much to his annoyance:

PR wise, Amond made the right move by acknowledging the old tweet and setting the record straight rather hoping his old post about his new employers would simply be forgotten and also by having some great communication with the club’s fans.

So, what can clubs take away from these case studies? Advise their players to close down any old accounts you no longer use, make them aware that your words can catch up with you years later and most importantly, think before you tweet as you never know who may be reading.

Bristol City’s Twitter – The GIFs that keeps on giving

When it comes to Twitter goal updates, Championship club Bristol City are top of the shots.

To non-football fans, it may be slightly puzzling as to why goal updates are attracting some much attention from so many on Twitter – but it’s City’s originality that is setting them apart from the rest.

At the start of the 2017/18 season, The Robins’ media officer got the players to give a wacky celebration in front of a green screen and used them for their goal updates. Aden Flint’s celebration below attracted over 10,000 retweets.

Brilliant.

Winger Jamie Paterson said to the BBC that’s it showing footballers in a different light and taking the seriousness out the game. And after seeing what he came up with, we have to say we agree.

Incredibly, half a million people saw the tweets on September 16th prompting the club to film a new set of celebrations.

They even went a little bit further by getting the club’s younger fans involved. See below:

As well as these GIFs making news in The BBC, they have also featured in FourFourTwo magazine, The Belfast Telegraph and The Independent. BBC Three even critiqued every single GIF. And with interest, followers and retweets rising with every game, it just goes to show that sometimes the simplest and the stupidest ideas are often the best!

The Class of 140 Characters: How Cathy Wood’s workshops are preparing budding footballers

From the Premier League to the National League, Cathy Wood’s social media workshops are showing future footballing stars how to be the best they can be online.

A former triathlete and journalist at the Daily Mail, Cathy started social media workshops in 2008 and has since offered club’s younger players advice at over 100 clubs – including Newcastle United, Aston Villa and Premier League newboys Huddersfield and Brighton. Her background as an athlete and as a reporter helps to create social media workshops for young people and athletes to understand the ways they communicate online.

Cathy’s career as a triathlete ended after a bicycle accident which left her lucky not to be paralysed. Cathy says that this led her to re-think her life and then she decided that she wanted to combine the passion she has for sport with something of value to young athletes.

“Close down any old accounts you no longer use or set up when you were younger. Delete these, don’t deactivate them.”

On setting up her social media workshops, she said: “I wanted to show them how powerful social media can be, when used well, and how damaging it can be when used poorly.

“I suppose I didn’t want a young person to lose the opportunity of competing at a high level because of something stupid they had done online. I don’t think I realised it at the time but, looking back, I think that’s what propelled me.”

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Working with clubs throughout the Football League, she says “We don’t judge people, we help them be the best they can be online. It’s a core value of the company. That and employing other elite athletes to work with me.”

When it comes to social media advice, Cathy listed out a few tips that she gives to young players:

a. Take responsibility for anything and everything you’ve put online. This may mean doing your own social media audit . It will be one of the best things you ever do as you will understand, and see, what others see about you online.
b. Close down any old accounts you no longer use or set up when you were younger. Delete these, don’t deactivate them.
c. Know how social media sites operate. Who are you sharing your information with? Who are your online ‘friends’? Are they really friends?
d. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. If a young player came to us – even if we hadn’t worked with them – we would try and help them or, at least, point them in the right direction.
e. Don’t be too cool for school. Social media is the best free marketing tool you will ever have. If you want to use it then use it well.
f. Young talented athletes/footballers can’t use social media the way their friends can. Accept this difference and embrace it.
g. Social media will only get bigger in the future, not smaller.

And as for the biggest issue with social media? Cathy says, “The biggest issue I come across is a lack of awareness. The safest player is an educated player and I think we, the adult population, need to do everything we can to help address this issue.”

Thanks to Cathy for discussing her work for us, and for more information you can visit her website at: cathywood.co.uk  or if you wish to email her for any advice:  info@cathywood.co.uk

Football Club Video Campaigns: Lights, camera, reaction!

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…