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A Merry Christmas for Premier League Fans – And Brands

On Boxing Day all football fans’ eyes will be on the Premier League and on the Serie A. But Christmas is a beneficial time for the whole ecosystem football.



Christmas is a time for giving. Fans will be able to enjoy a lot of games over the festive period, especially in England. The watching experience, be it via Sky or DAZN, is even optimised and holds some specials for all the supporters. But as the fans are treated to a nice time of entertainment, clubs, companies and brands look to merge fetive cheer and charity with their own monetarisation strategy.

Boxing Day is a fan’s favorite

On Boxing Day, December 26th, football fans around the globe will probably be watching the Premier League. For about 130 years there have been games at Christmas in Britain and they’re a tradition which pays off for fans and clubs alike. Since 1966 games are played on Boxing Day alone to accommodate the experience to the festive family doings on Christmas Day. Fans of the English first tier can expect a flood of games until the new year. Some moan about the packed fixture list and not having a break at the time. The Premier League will have its first winter break next season, albeit in February; so watching football from Anfield to Old Trafford is not yet in jeopardy for Boxing Day. 

Boxing Day is loved by football fans in many countries, especially in England, © Premier League

And there are even benefits for those sports enthusiasts. DAZN will stream all of the Premier League matches that day live and will do so likewise for the Serie A. There’s even more appeal there now as Cristiano Ronaldo made his way to Turin and the league is having games on Boxing Day for the first time. In Britain people can even watch three Premier League games – 
Fulham v Wolves, Brighton v Arsenal and Watford v Chelsea – on Television or via streaming service without a Sky Sports subscription. Anyone who has a basic Sky, VirginMedia or TalkTalk package as well as those who have a NOW TV entertainment pass will be able to see these games. So fans are encouraged not only to watch football during the festive season but to spend their potential earnings or coupons etc. on a subscription, too. 

The experience they’re likely to witness will represent a picture as lovely as their Christmas mood should be. Because stadiums are packed on Boxing Day and in the days after Christmas, fans are eager to impress and be impressed. In the light of these annual commitments supporters, streaming services and broadcasters might be just about to receive some more gifts. The clubs though will be expecting additional income, too. 

The good cause and the Christmas shopping

Around Christmas some teams, like Werder Bremen, even play their last home game of the year in a special kit. Bremen’s Christmas tree shirt won’t be sold this year, but it still generates some awareness. 

Werder Bremen and Max Kruse will once again play with their traditional Christmas tree Badge on the shirt, © Werder Bremen

In England, teams across the country participated in the initiative Christmas Jumper Day. That day was on December 14th and it suggests you wear a striking Christmas jumper to show your support for charity, while you donate to help save children’s futures worldwide. AFC Bournemouth, Chelsea London, Manchester City, Arsenal London etc. – they all took part as players and managers wore Christmas jumpers. 

But of course they were pictured wearing officially branded club jumpers, be it with a big badge on it or just a tiny reminiscence. 

So after all the clubs will hope to showcase that wear in some noble context and sell it for Christmas then. At this time of year the club shops do offer quite a lot anyway; reduced due to Christmas, of course. That’s the same stroke the companies like DAZN or SKY or actually any other are using. Giving with a glimpse of a real gift, but for the sake of taking, eventually. 

In the end Christmas is a time to revel in all the sports shown and made accessible through various other channels such as Social Media. You can sit back and enjoy. But as there is even more money in the market, that joy might trickle down – financially – to companies and brands, to the clubs and even to those who need it most. Maybe in the future there’ll be a way to make donating an even bigger part of that festive football business, there’s enough money in it to spare the odd Euro or pound. For now, let’s just enjoy the sports and its many-faceted opportunities for all concerned parties. And Merry Christmas to all of them, too. 

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Sponsoring & Marketing

How Real Betis Aim for World-Class – Quite Literally

Real Betis Sevilla may be a middle-class club in La Liga with the odd appearance in Europe. But their pledge to become climate neutral makes them pioneers for sustainable club development off the pitch.



Honestly, what’s your best memory thinking of Spanish traditional club Real Betis Sevilla? The club is certainly not too well known outside of Spain; the most recent footage you probably have seen was Leo Messi’s wonder goal against them a few days back. Apart from their decent performances in La Liga and at least the Europa League group stage, the club have already proved their innovative approach concerning off-field matters. Now, Real Betis have committed to becoming climate neutral. Which would make them the first club in Spain to be just that and one of the first few clubs to take sustainability to another level.

Emulating the Forest Green Rovers status

When it comes to climate neutrality, sports and football do have a long way to go. Yet, there are clubs that already operate on an officially climate neutral level. And La Liga’s Real Betis Sevilla, also known as Real Betis Balompié, aim to become one of them. So far, the English fourth tier club Forest Green Rovers are a prime example for sustainable operating. They have 100 per cent green energy, are fully vegan, use electro mobility and are the first club to ever become climate neutral according to none less than the UN.

As of the beginning of March, Real Betis have officially joined the
Climate Neutral Now initiative of UN Climate Change. By doing that, they commit themselves to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to compensate the rest. Furthermore, the club will become a platform to raise awareness for the need for a change in climate politics and policies. Real Betis’ millions of fans across the globe should therefore be amongst the first to acknowledge the club’s quest for a better world – and that alone should stand the Béticos in good stead, especially in relation to social attention.

Real Betis will become Spain’s first top tier club to become climate neutral and emulate the achievement of Forest Green Rovers, a team that by coincidence or not, also sport green shirts. On Betis’ home kits we find Green Earth from Avalon Life as the main sponsor as well, a project to commercialise endangered areas in Central America via blockchain, in order to keep them from further burdening the environment.

Ángel Haro, president of the club, said about the coming projects for Real Betis:

Since the beginning, Real Betis Balompié has been about its family, its members and fans. We strive to ensure that they feel Betis represents them and supports them, just as much as they support us. Taking action on climate is also about them, it’s about our family. We understand that climate change is a threat to the livelihoods and the wellbeing of everyone on the planet, and we are doing our part.

And the Global Climate Action at the UN appreciate the committment a lot, as their manager Niclas Svenningsen emphasised:

We are encouraged to see Real Betis align its business with the climate agenda. We are inspired by their focus on serving their community, engaging their fans, and working together with others in a respectful, responsible manner. We are happy to have them as one of the signatories of our Climate Neutral Now initiative

What else are Real Betis doing to become somewhat of a world-class club?

Climate change is an important matter, but how can a football club oblige this aim? First of all, Real Betis will provide renewable energy for its new sports city, plus advanced waste collection and treatment systems. Additionally, a lot of further trees shall breathe more life into the environment. Smart illumination systems will be installed in the stadium
Benito Villamarín and single-use plastic shall be drastically reduced.

These measures to become climate neutral are an important step for Real Betis on the way to becoming a widely acclaimed club. While things might not have gone the way the fans would have wanted in the Europa League, where Stade Rennes was responsible for their downfall, they’re still fighting to get back to European football next season. And to stay present in Europe is important for the club as a brand. As their sustainable approach will see them getting repect, other aspects have to be considered in order to generate financial revenue at the same time. Thankfully, Real Betis are also frontrunners in the realms of e-commerce, since they’re one of several clubs that own a customised club shop on Amazon.

Real Betis partner with Amazon, © Real Betis Sevilla

So, after all, the internationalisation strategies of Real Betis put them in a bracket with pioneers in their very aspects of climate neutrality or lucrative e-commerce solutions. Their Social Media accounts could use a push, though, but the attention from their newest and laudable scheme will probably help there, too. Let’s see whether Joaquín, Sergio Canales, Marc Bartra and Co. can achieve big things on the pitch in the near future. Their club has certainly made sure that there will be an awareness for even more urgent matters on this world than football, believe it or not: the future of our planet.

Any club should aim to at least optimise their management of single-plastic use and have the goal to become climate neutral. Real Betis and the Forest Green Rovers are great examples and even the best clubs in the world can learn from them. Whoever is interested, may also have a look at the UN Climate Neutral Now initiative.

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Sponsoring & Marketing

How Michael Jordan Became a Top PSG Summer Signing

The Champions League shirts from Nike’s Jordan brand might not have brought PSG luck, but they certainly support their income as they are about to hit one million shirt sales per season.



When Paris Saint-Germain gathered their new assets for the coming seasons last summer, their collaboration with Nike’s Jordan clothing line was already seen as a marketing coup. The creation of their third kit, a black and white classic, was an unprecedented move. For the reknowned Jordan brand logo replaced Nike’s famously-present Swoosh on the clothing. What could have ended up as as a well-intended, yet maybe misguided measure, has indeed helped the club – or rather the brand – PSG flourish. For the first time they’re on course to sell over a million shirts per season as a 470 per cent rise in sales in the US market makes them a fashionable choice over there.

Big personalities make for massive sales

In modern football, kit deals have become an invaluable source for income. First of all, we have the sponsoring, which earns clubs, especially the big ones playing in the Champions League, tens of millions per season. Even more so, since sleeve sponsors started to take over. Furthermore, main sponsors are prepared to pay lager sums with every new sponsorship which opens up opportunities. PSG, in order to comply with UEFA Financial Fairplay, will change the long-lasting Fly Emirates on their chest from next season on. The hotel chain Accor will see its Accor Live Limitless initiative represented in the letters ALL on the french outfit’s chest – and will reportedly pay close to 50 million Euro per season for that.

Apart from sponsorships, selling shirts is, of course, a steady source for revenue. And it takes no wonder that superstars help reach super numbers when it comes to shirt sales. PSG’s policy of buying big in the transfer market pays off in that context, too. The arrivals of Neymar and Mbappé, joining the likes of Cavani, Veratti or Di Maria, have taken those shirt sales to another level. According to Marca, kit sales have increased 80 per cent last season compared to two years back and will grow even more this time. Before the investment from PSG’s current owners, the club sold only about 80.000 kits a season. So the influence of Neymar and Mbappé, who are also two of the most followed people on Instagram, is clear to see. Another confirmation of this effect are numbers related to Juventus Turin’s shirt sales this season, now that they have Cristiano Ronaldo in their ranks. As Sportskeeda reportreferring to Tuttorsport –, the Old Lady made 26,51 million Euro in the first half of this season with product sales and licences. At the same time last season, without Ronaldo, the amount was 14,56 million.

PSG X Jordan goes beyond football to strengthen the brand

The motto for the Paris Saint-Germain meets Nike Jordan line is closely related to a celebrity-centred approach. Although a lot of people these days might be more familiar with Nike’s Air Jordan boots than with Michael Jordan himself. Anyway, getting the Nike Jordan brand on board was a shrewd move for PSG. As SportsPro Media report, they will hit one million shirt sales for the first time ever. Merging their yearly expanding football brand, with its superstars on the pitch, Al-Khelaifi’s ongoing investment and their growing number of domestic titles, with something more of a lifestyle and fashion brand has certainly promoted those Champions League shirts to a level where more people will buy and wear it. Even if they’re not that much into football. Because a lot of media icons have already sported the wear, for example NBA star Draymond Green or even Justin Timberlake.

In the US alone, PSG have recorded 470 per cent! more sales of wear of their Nike Jordan line. 40.000 shirts are said to have been sold the weekend after the release.

And PSG are clever enough not to breach a market with unidimensional clothing. Thus, their Champions League shirt is available both in black and white; so hardcore fans can purchase them both. And with prices of 85 and 140 Euro respectively, that will gain them some revenue for sure. The whole clothing range has much more to offer, though. Basketball shirts, which are a proven asset in modern lifestyle, especially for some musicians, jackets, the famous Nike Air shoes, caps and what have you.

Screenshot from the PSG Jordan online store, © Paris Saint-Germain

According to Die WELT, they offer around 90 products and Nike, Jordan and PSG expect to make at least 200 million Euro per year with that line, which will be split between them.

Native brand collaboration cuts it

What PSG have done really well with their Jordan branding is the native way in which the Nike brand was adopted. For the Michael Jordan reminiscence, which is obviously the brand’s logo, does replace Nike’s Swoosh while it strongly resembles the depiction of the Eiffel Tower in PSG’s logo consequently on the shirt. Some might say it’s a bit of a long shot, but it certainly offers the impression of a more native branding approach – as it perfectly reflects the two brands joining forces on the actual kits and all the other products. While some football fans still see PSG as something of a parvenu – whose economical goals will overshadow the club’s and footballing tradition –, the success of that marketing stroke speaks for itself.

However, their unlucky, unexpected and premature exit from the Champions League this season will have cost them some money. And probably will have dented the growing shirt sales curve a bit. It might take time before any football fan can accept these strategies. We’ve come to the days, though, when Michael Jordan, somehow, has become a great acquisition for the football club Paris Saint-Germain. And it’s not a bad idea for other big clubs to copy such cooperations in order to transfer their brand into modern lifestyle. Not every sports traditionalist will like it, yet, every club sales director will. And it might eventually pay for new players, too – who can bolster shirt sales themselves.

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Sponsoring & Marketing

Fans Won’t Say I’m Lovin’ It – O’Higgins McDonald’s Kit is Marketing Gone Wrong



They say there’s no such thing as bad publicity. Yet, the new kits from Chilean Club Deportivo O’Higgins are really something else. Not only do they have different sponsors on the chest, near their neck and even on the thighs, but their back numbers are quite clearly designed like chips from McDonald’s – that have had a dip in the ketchup. If that is not unmistakable for anyone, there’s even a bag of chips with the renowned logo beneath it. Some might say it’s clever marketing. By the look of it, it’s rather not.

Breaking new grounds: But that’s not as easy anywhere

The look of the shirts from O’Higgins, who ply their trade in the Chilean Primera División, is certainly striking.

So every fan will probably think about the world-famous fast food chain and maybe even having a few chips. But even if that was the case, the club cannot be too happy with their outfit as it is touted as one of the ugliest kits around right now. Sports journalist Matias Grez, who spotted it, surely sees it that way.

Being pink is not so much a novelty now, nor is it inappropriate. The combination, though, is quite terrible. And in times, when native advertising is wanted from users, viewers and supporters around, this doesn’t seem like the shrewdest move. At least not for the club itself.

But probably they’ve received some handy extra money from the fast food giants. McDonald’s on the other hand won’t care too much about the look of the kit. They will be visible much more in the Chilean league and now in the media coverage, too. Furthermore, some viewers might feel a sudden hunger for chips appear – and that is always the right effect for a sponsor, as long as a few of those viewers get themselves some.

Whether one likes it or not, the chips numbers are something special that’s going kind of viral. And it might therefore pay off in the end. Yet, experiments like that are not easily doable in every league. In the German Bundesliga, for example, the numbers on the back must consist of one colour, be positioned in narrow measurements and, most of all, may not refer to a sponsor. So, if any brand marketer already thought about implementing a similar stroke, it will not be that easy. There are other ways for innovative marketing, branding has to be coming via audio services like Spotify, via Social Media like Instagram or it has to be in-app. Sometimes, though, a simple scheme offers great attention as well. A pat on the back from McDonald’s might be on the cards for O’Higgins – or a pat on the chips, shall we say? That shirt certainly had us talking; as a brand, you can’t ask for more, really.

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Content & Media

Streaming Services Offer Clubs a Route to Fans’ Ears and Hearts

The BVB have teamed up with Deezer and join the likes of ManUtd or Barça, while Boca Juniors and Co. partner with Spotify. Streaming Services grow in importance for any club, especially with podcasts in mind.



Multi media are a modern standard for any user. And so do football fans not only follow their beloved clubs via one channel, but use various opportunities to get ever more content concerning their club. With this in mind, it is no wonder a lot of clubs are teaming up with streaming services like Spotify and Deezer to create club branded channels and playlists in order to lure the supporters to the respective platforms. That very move also makes for a great foundation if clubs consider embracing the growing podcast market in the future.

Deezer deals aplenty for clubs

Borussia Dortmund just launched their very own Deezer account where not only playlists for the matchday will appear, but also curated ones from selected players like Marco Reus or Jacob Bruun Larsen.

Carsten Cramer, BVB director for sales, marketing & digitalisation, explained that the club could get closer to its fans via such a streaming service:

We’re very happy to partner up with Deezer. Music like football has the power to unite people. With Deezer we have the ideal partner to get closer to our fans thanks with music.

Ralph Pighin, VP Central & Eastern Europe at Deezer said that Deezer would accompany happenings at one of Europe’s biggest clubs with relevant audio content.

Deezer offers club branded playlists, © Deezer

Referring to the founding year of the BVB, Deezer offers fans its family service for 19,09 euro in the next three months. This special offer, meant to make individualised listening for all family members – up to six profiles – easier, will be available in the BVB app.

The French streaming service Deezer is also the official music partner for media giants Manchester United or the FC Barcelona.

ManUtd put it nicely by claiming the streaming service offers a passage to clubs’ hidden hearts:

Deezer’s partnership with Manchester United is an exclusive backstage pass for fans to the club’s hidden heart. With football and music content you won’t find anywhere else, from player’s playlists to what’s playing in the stadium at Old Trafford before a match, Deezer is the best place to listen to Manchester United’s Flow.

Clubs are banking on different streaming services like Apple Music or Spotify

Not only Deezer is helping teams around the globe reach their diverse fanbases. Argentinian powerhouse Boca Juniors for example have recently partnered with Spotify, as SportsPro Media report. As part of the deal the club will create a playlist with a title like Way to the Bombonera. The Swedish streaming giants had already teamed up with the three famous clubs from São Paulo: Corinthians, Palmeiras and São Paulo FC. On São Paulo FC’s Spotify channel there are playlists with hits from the years 1992, 1993 an 2005 – as in each of those years the club won the famed Copa Libertadores. The partnership even saw Spotify give caricature paintings as well as co-branded headphones to the players.

Now, that’s what you call visible branding.

Various clubs from all over the world have their own channel on Spotify by now. Borussia Mönchengladbach or West Ham United are examples for that.

And Spanish La Liga does have its own channel, too.

Apart from Deezer and Spotify, big clubs like Arsenal London or Bayern Munich have partnerships with different streaming services in place. The German record champions have an exclusive deal with Apple Music and are furthermore equipped with Dr. Dre headphones, a division from Apple. Arsenal London, on the other hand, have a started a partnership with streaming platform TIDAL. This rather unique deal emphasises Arsenal’s conviction of developing young talent. Arsenal chief commercial officer Vinai Venkatesham said:

Football and music are great passions of so many of our global supporters. This partnership combines these two passions in a unique way and will give our members access to some fantastic benefits. It is also a celebration of our shared belief in young talent, and will create opportunities to bring together our players with TIDAL’s rising artists.

Here, some Arsenal stars tell you what they listen to before matches.

The big potential in deals with audio streaming platforms

As of January 2019, Deezer had seven million paying subscribers, according to Statista. Spotify have 87 million paying users and 200 monthly unique visitors, though. And Daniel Ek, Spotify’s CEO and founder, wants to turn the audio market into a success like the video market. For he says that people tend to spend as much time with audio these days as with video content.

With the world focused on trying to reduce screen time, it opens up a massive audio opportunity.

And audio does not just mean music. Podcasts are a content format which has been well adopted in the US. According to the IAB (International Advertising Bureau), ad revenue from podcasts was estimated at 314 million US dollar for 2017. To take it into perspective, that signals an 86 per cent increase year-over-year. And estimations from PwC see it surpass the one billion mark by 2020, growing to 1,6 billion dollar in 2022.

Podcast revenue growth expectations in the US, © PwC

So there’s a whole marketable market there for the taking – and sports clubs should be aware of this potential. Especially, since in Europe the podcast market hasn’t been swamped with too much content, yet. And listeners are even earger to spend a lot of time and are not afraid of native advertising as well.

To partner with streaming services like Spotify, where the users are for a good part anyway, is a shrewd idea. Because Spotify just acquired podcast specialist platforms Anchor and Gimlet Media for nearly 340 million US dollar to strengthen their own podcast department.

St. Pauli, a cult club from Germany with fans everywhere, has already offered its fans the opportunity to listen to podcasts via Deezer. These are only fan podcasts, but clubs could integrate their own content, too. If it is exclusive, it would surely lure even more people. And that would also be great for the streaming service. The FC St. Pauli also promote songs from their remarkable FC St. Pauli Music School by Levi’s® via Deezer, an insitution at the Millerntor stadium for everyone who can’t afford music lessons. Branding and fan generating go hand in hand for them with the help of the streaming service. Those are great marketing prospects for any club in the world, since audio and football have long been closely related – and a revival, albeit way more digital and immersive, seems to be on the cards.

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Sponsoring & Marketing

Forest Green Rovers Are the Best Club in the World – Just Not on the Pitch

Forest Green Rovers from the English 4th division have 100% green energy, are completely vegan, have an organic pitch and soon a stadium designed by renowned architect Zaha Hadid.



When it comes to sustainability, few clubs around the globe can compare with little Forest Green Rovers from Nailsworth, England. As the first vegan club worldwide, the only carbon neutral one and – according to the FIFA – the greenest club in the world, they really set the tone in terms of a club structure, which is environmentally sustainable. And surely the whole ecosystem could learn from the old yet so progressive club.

Sustainability concerns everyone

The Forest Green Rovers are certainly not the only football club that is trying to do more for the environment. Leicester City for example have just announced their partnership with Bakers Waste. Together they want to work on the Pass on Plastic campaign to reduce single-use plastic. Leicester City’s Operations Direcor Kevin Barclay commented:

We are thrilled to announce Bakers Waste as our new Official Waste Partner. It’s one of a number of steps the Club is taking to improve its waste processes in order to help protect the environment. Leicester City Football Club is committed to recycling and reducing the amount of plastic it uses – aims which this partnership will only enhance.

German cult club FC St. Pauli on the other side are engaging with the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) for their merchandising products. This means they will use biologically made natural fiber for their scarves or shirts in the shop. Over time, every product with the famed skull on it shall live up to those standards.

FC St. Pauli want to make fair merchandising articles, © FC St. Pauli

Speaking of skulls, Forest Green Rovers have their very own on their kits, thanks to a partnership with the international non-profit, marine wildlife conservation organisation Sea Shepherd.

Both parties, FGR and Sea Shepherd, try to make the world a better plae. In fact, there’s no club quite like Forest Green Rovers. They are the greenest football club in the world, as the FIFA have confirmed.

Vegan, true to green energy and in line with nature

The Forest Green Rovers stay true to their name. Founded in 1889, they’ve only recently reached the heights of professional football in Englands League Two, the fourth tier. Yet they’re known to a wider audience for their engagement off the pitch. Winning awards like the Green Heart Hero Sustainability in Sport Award in 2018 and the Green Transport Project of the Year in 2013, for installing electric vehicles at the club, they have become a pioneer in the football ecosystem when it comes to holistic sustainable operations.

FGR chairman Dale Vince said in a UN-produced video:

We’ve become the first club in the world to become climate neutral according to the UN […] Sport looks to be a great vehicle to carry the sustainability message.

Their majority owner and principle partner ist Ecotricity, a company that provides green energy with their modern windmill park (they don’t call them turbines). Another partner is Grundon, a waste company trying to help FGR recycling 100 per cent of their waste. Add Quorn to those partners: they were the architects behind FGR’s rise to become the very first full-vegan club around. Players, staff and even fans can only enjoy vegan food and drinks at the club’s venues. But that makes for a healthier experience, does help the planet in the Long term and can even optimise performances.

Veggie Burger, served at The New Lawn, © Forest Green Rovers

In order to keep the environment around the club areas clean, Forest Green Rovers also provide charging points for electric vehicles; as they try to get more visitors travelling in a sustainable way.

Even their own lawn-mower, GPS-directed, is powered by energy harnessed from the sun. And it’s only mowing pitches that are fully organic, free from pesticides and herbicides. Adidionally, rain water is saved beneath the main pitch to re-use it for further irrigation. An example of FGR’s success in strengthening sustainability at the club is the emission value. Total emissions were at about 5 tonnes in 2015/16, but only at 2,49 tonnes in 2017/18.

In their Environmental Policy the club states:

Our aim is to make FGR a place where we can demonstrate eco thinking and technology to a new audience – football fans. Indeed, we believe that we have the opportunity to introduce sustainability to the wider world of sport, not just football. We know that a football club has an impact on the environment, so we’ve implemented an Environmental Management System to measure those impacts and target them for reduction. Within our Environmental Management System, we’ve set ourselves ambitious targets to continually improve performance, significantly reduce pollution made by all areas of the club, and ensure we’re compliant with environmental regulations.

A brand-new stadium by Zaha Hadid shall show the world their aims

In 2016 Forest Green Rovers announced plans for a new stadium with 5.000 seats. Eco Park is planned in a parkland where 500 trees and 1.8 km of new hedgerows would be planted. Even more stunningly, the stadium should largely consist of wood – and was designed by world-famous Zaha Hadid, who is known for the Innovation Tower in Hongkong, the Guangzhou Opera House or the London Aquatics Centre.

Forest Green Rovers’ Eco Park as planned, © Forest Green Rovers

The permission for the stadium is yet to follow, though. Should it be built, it could show the whole world of football and everyone else a way to make make sports clubs ambassadors for a greener, better world.

An important outcome of this policy is, we hope, long term behavioural change, not only at our club, but amongst supporters and the rest of the sporting world too,

reads FGR’s policy.

Another way for more awareness: Bringing the intentions to the world and youth

Forest Green Rovers, who currently sit 7th in League Two, are not content just working in a sustainable way. They want to share their ambitions with everyone – and would therefore surely like to climb the leagues. But mainly they strive for being a club, a company, that brings environmental conciousness to people by showing them the way. That’s why they offer the Fit2Last programme for schools, teaching the benefits of sports, recreation, healthy living and sustainability. Furthermore, their Ambassadors Scheme sees young people share their message in schools.

But what it also does is promote the club. FGR give away 400 replica shirts for children in Year 3 each year. Around that age children tend to choose teams they follow. So that might be a clever move in terms of gaining even more awareness amongst the youngest.

Children get free FGR shirts each year, © Forest Green Rovers

A small club in the fourth tier of England without any major trophies or star players they might be, but Forest Green Rovers are really the best club in the world as far as nature is concerned. And they do know how to gain attention for their club and hopefully mindfulness for their message.
In football, fortune favours the bold and who knows, if FGR go up and generate some more fans due to their unique approach, they could become something of a bigger club in the future. For now, they already are great for what they are doing and with such commitment, too. Rumour has it other big clubs have asked for advice now. A spokesperson from Forest Green Rovers has confirmed that they collaborate with the Bundesliga, the FIFA, the UEFA, World Rugby, Roland Garros and various others and that they’ve hosted Wembley Stadium, the EFL, Sky Sports and many more in order to tell those organisations what they do to keep their place as the world’s greenest football club. Now any association or company should take a look to the special club from Nailsworth, England.

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Sponsoring & Marketing

Grêmio Test Shirt Selling via Vending Machine at the Airport – Shopping Centres Might Follow

Grêmio Porto Alegre, Copa Libertadores winner in 2017, experiment with a vending machine for their official kits at the local airport. A simple, yet up-to-date measure.



Sometimes quite simple ideas could help clubs to strenghten their merchandise income. While there is so much talk about the exploitation of digital strategies that promise optimised revenue streams or at least a surge of followers, the odd real life solution might just be as valuable eventually. Brazilian top club Grêmio Porto Alegre have come up with such a solution, using automation in a rather simplistic way. A vending machine at the Aeroporto Salgado Filho in Porto Alegre will sell their official kit. If the test is deemed a success, similar machines will be installed in shopping centres or restaurants. That is clever marketing, but there could be a hitch somewhere.

A vending machine to earn additional revenue

Grêmio Porto Alegre are a traditional and popular club in Brazil. They even have a remarkable fanbase outside the coutry as they made headlines by winning the Copa Libertadores in the 80s, the 90s and very recently in 2017. Furthermore, the legend Ronaldinho played for the club in his early years. Players like Emerson, Anderson or Douglas Costa also started their careers there before they played for European top clubs.

Now the club has started a test to further bolster their popularity around the world. At the local airport in Porto Alegre, there will be a vending machine for 90 days, selling the current kit the players wear.

The idea is to give fans or even interested passengers the opportunity to snap up a kit just before entering a plane or coming right from it. The Máquina Tricolor offers the iconic kits if you pay by debit or credit card. The shirts from manufacturer Umbro tend to have a very unique look.

New signing Rômulo is proud of his shirt, screenshot YouTube, © Grêmio FBPA

And the marketing team from Brazil will hope that even more people could decide to get themselves one of those special shirts.

The concept of this machine is new in football circles, so we need to enter the market on an experimental basis. But considering the ease of distribution, coupled with the accessibility, practicality, and instantaneousness with which the product reaches the consumer, we are sure that it will be a successful product,

said Beto Carvalho, Grêmio’s marketing executive. The machine, which was constructed in partnership with Wise Tecno, had been tested at a banquet and proved quite successful there. 80 kits were sold within an hour. Now Grêmio want to give more than eight million passengers, who annually come to the Airport in Porto Alegre, the opportunity to easily get hold of the famous kit. If the three-month test period shows positive results, such vending machines shall be installed in bars, restaurants or shopping centres, too.

A good idea, but isn’t there a downside? Digitalisation as an option

The express version for the kit supply is cerntainly a good marketing invention. Especially at an airport, where people often tend to spend some spare money or are just looking for a fitting souvenir. It might turn out to be a noticeable plus for revenue from a simple machine.

But will this really impact the earnings considerably? And how many fans will turn to such machines as they can get discounts and more personalisation online? It seems as though this very innovation is rather a small contributor to the overall economic performance of the club. Yet, they have generated some proper awareness for their kits by only working with that machine and have therefore probably just increased the number of people getting their own kit from the Máquina Tricolor.

Other clubs could follow suit, as tourists often make up an ever growing number of stadium visitors, be it at Old Trafford, Camp Nou or the Allianz Arena in Munich. Clubs could try to catch their attention. Fans will probably rather turn to online offers, since they are simply more beneficial for them, mostly. But those vending machines could be even more of a success for clubs in the future. Just think one would integrate touch panels or voice assistance, which offer information about the club and its history, the chance to book tickets for a match or promote official Apps to give passengers a first taste of what the club is all about. So, a more digital vending machine with access not only to the kits might just be the future of on-the-go marketing for innovative clubs such as Grêmio Porto Alegre or any other one.

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Atlanta United – Rise of A Modern Day Football Experience



Atlanta United win the MLS. While there have been exceptional performances from players like Josef Martínez and manager Gerardo Martino, it’s been an astonishing achievement for a club that was only formed four years ago and just entered the United States’ major football tournament two years back. Such young clubs, and David Beckham’s Inter Miami are certainly looking to follow in Atlanta’s footsteps in about two years time, do have the advantage to create a football experience free from traditional habits and breathing a new way to consume football. But, since old habits die hard, the core of football will last; or will it?

Atlanta United: Crowd record for the newcomers

When Atlanta United beat the Portland Timbers for their maiden MLS triumph, they did so having generated an already established fan base to count on. Given that MLS final win ended only their second season in the competition it is rather surprising. In their very first season they also brought togehter the biggest crowd the MLS had ever seen in its 22-year history. 70.425 visitors saw a draw against Orlando City. And their general attendance isnt bad either. Theyve had 53.000 visitors on average this season.

Average visitor numbers for Atlanta United in the MLS, © Transfermarkt.com

That is only made possible, some might say, as the clubs owner is no other than Arthur Blank, co-founder of The Home Depot and owner of prestigious NFL club Atlanta Falcons. Those two teams share a stadium of the most modern standard: the Mercedes-Benz-Stadium. That arena has a futuristic closeable roof, a 360-degree LED screen attached to it – the biggest in sports business with 63.000 (!) square feet – and is generally quite awesome.

The Mercedes-Benz-Stadium with its 360-gedree video screen, © Mercedes-Benz-Stadium

It really merges a fantastic real life sports experience brilliantly with the demands of a digitalised fan culture. There are 2.000 TV screens around the whole venue plus a state-of-the-art audio system to make sure no fan misses anything. That goes for personal communication or Social Media connections as well, as there are also moren than 1.800 wireless access points. Fans can even use Apple Pay for purchases. All that made the stadium SportsTechies Most Innovative Venue 2017.

But its a big sponsorship paying for that. Mercedes Benz got the naming rights for the stadium for 27 years, another superlative. Although its not clear what amount of money they pay for that, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution refers to it as the biggest single marketing deal in Mercedes Benz history. So there is a lot of financial power behind that club, Atlanta United, and that seems to be inevitable if theyre in for the long term. Because football lives off its roots, yet is ruled by money. Both is true for Atlanta United.

Atlanta United culture: Fans favorites best of

The club from Georgia may have a few advantages when it comes to fan engagement. Sure, they had to generate them first of all and all the money behind that super venue will have helped. But there must be something the club is doing right apart from all the glitter. For one thing, they are playing pretty well despite not having the most star-studded squad. Another thing is, though, that the club is building its very own fan culture, which is a bit of a mashup of acclaimed aspects in experiencing football as entertainment. There is, for example, the Viking Clap that is performed twice during a home game as Helena Oliviero from The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. Adapted from the Iceland national team that feature is poised to get the crowd going.

Furthermore, there are different supporters groups. Resurgence is one of them and they smash a piñata filled with glitter in the opponents colours or forms before each home game. That will keep people interested, another thing to do so is the giant Golden Spike, a reminiscence of Atlantas railroad roots, that is signed by fans and players and than hammered into the ground near the supporters section – by a local celebrity.

The rapper Rich Homie Quan hammers the ceremonial Golden Spike to open the Atlanta United game against the Chicago Fire, © Curtis Compton, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

All of these rituals play their part in building an unorthodox, yet strong fellowship for the club and the team. Herein lies the advantage: Atlanta fans are mostly rather new to football (not American Football, probably) and have neither prejudices nor stubborn expectations of how football should be. So Atlanta United is a new and modern club creating a new brand of football following off the field.

Atlanta United is a modern day club with new football fans, Screenshot YouTube, © Atlanta United FC

On it, there is some very good football and its core values are not going to change for the time being. But maybe Atlanta United and the MLS – with a bit more impartiality – show the football industrie how a modern experience can be created. For the momentum of the MLS is certainly there: growth rates for social channels that other clubs can only dream of, and on the right channels as well. Atlanta have more Instagram followers than traditional clubs like FC Fulham or Werder Bremen, although they lack big fan numbers on Facebook. As Instagram is the place to go for brands, they may have taken a more lucrative path here. Anyway, Atlanta United are a modern and somehow experimental part of an evolving sports industry. Their success on and off the pitch has shown that you can produce new football experiences. Will it ever be the same as going to Anfield, attending the Clásico or “feasting your eyes“ on classic Italian Catenaccio? Maybe not. But who says it has to be then? Stadia like that Mercedes-Benz-Stadium are going to emerge, so weve got another thing coming, probably.

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Von Indien bis Stockholm – Fans für die Ewigkeit?



Das Modewort Digitalisierung hat tatsächlich auch in seiner Frequenz eine Daseinsberechtigung. Sie ist überall. Doch neben all ihren Vorzügen und den hochspannenden und hilfreichen Entwicklungen sorgt sie genauso für eine Ungewissheit. Wie stark wirkt sie sich auf den Arbeitsmarkt aus? Kann die Vermittlung von Werten in einer gänzlich digitalisierten Welt verlustfrei vonstatten gehen? Oder: verliert der Fußball seine traditionsbewussten und loyalen Fans? Digitale Potentiale bedeuten einerseits die Chance zur Internationalisierung, die unbedingt genutzt werden muss, wenn man als Verein, als Liga, ja als Marke langfristig überleben möchte. Andererseits sind aber auch die User viel freier in ihren Entscheidungen, wie sie ihr Fußballerleben gestalten möchten; und vor allem: auf welchen Kanälen und bezogen auf welche Liga? Deshalb gilt es für Clubs und Verbände gleichsam schon heute mit Hochdruck daran zu arbeiten, neue Fans ausfindig zu machen und langfristig zu halten sowie die etablierten Supporter für lange Zeit an das eigene Produkt zu binden. Hier braucht es ein Gleichgewicht von digital und vor Ort engagierten Fans, damit das Bild des traditionellen Vereins in einer modernen Gesellschaft aufrechterhalten bleibt. Die Expansion nach Indien – und China – oder das Angebot von Stadionkarten auf Lebenszeit sind mutige und innovative Schritte.

Von zwei Herangehensweisen in verschiedener Größenordnung: Die DFL und AIK Solna

Die digitale Transformation ermöglicht ungeahnte Markteintritte, fordert jedoch auch Tribute. Grundsätzlich geben sich Vereine, hinter denen längst Marken, ja Unternehmen stehen, nicht nur mit dem Bewahren des Status quo zufrieden. Das wäre sowohl auf dem Platz als auch abseits davon fatal. Aus diesem Grund lotet man stets neue Geschäftsfelder aus oder sucht Wege, um den schon bestehenden Einkommensstrom auf Dauer zu sichern.

Die DFL geht dabei neue Wege. Mit China, dem einwohnerstärksten Land der Welt und einem auf technologischem Level starken Markt, kooperiert gerade der deutsche Fußball bereits seit einiger Zeit. Während sich die Chinese Super League dank hochbezahlter Stars inzwischen auch international einen Namen gemacht hat, werden Fans trotzdem großes Interesse an den etablierten Top-Ligen Europas haben. Die Premier League, die Ligue 1, die Serie A, LaLiga und die Bundesliga sind die Vorreiter. Allerdings muss die Bundesliga sich eingestehen, dass gegenüber dieser Konkurrenz nur wenige internationale Top Stars in Deutschland spielen, mithin das Awareness-Potential ein Stück weit geringer ist. Deshalb setzt man bei der DFL auf tiefgreifende Kooperationen, die das Interesse am deutschen Profifußball mehrdimensional und langfristig aufbauen sollen. Und das zahlt sich aus. Laut der renommierten Red Card-Studie aus China ist die Bundesliga in den digitalen Medien im Land am stärksten vertreten und sticht, Stand Februar, sogar die global so populäre Premier League aus.

Es ist eine große Ehre für die Bundesliga, mit unserem digitalen Angebot zum vierten Mal in Folge in China als die einflussreichste Fußballliga ausgezeichnet zu werden,

meinte der CEO der Bundesliga International GmbH, Robert Klein, zu der Zeit. Wird der chinesische Markt schon erobert, greift die DFL nun auch in Indien an, hinter China das zweitbevölkerungsreichste Land überhaupt und ebenso ein großer Player in digitalen Fragen. Gerade hat die DFL eine Partnerschaft mit IMG Reliance bekanntgegeben, die nicht nur die Bundesliga in Indien promoten, sondern ebenso zur Entwicklung des indischen Fußballs selbst beitragen soll.

Demnach sollen Jugendfußballsysteme und -strategien nach Indien exportiert werden, Besuche von deutschen Legenden und Stars sind genauso geplant wie Spiele deutscher Clubs in Indien. Außerdem wird IMG Reliance einzigartige Match Screenings und Fans Parks promoten, die der indischen Bevölkerung die Chance geben die Bundesliga in großem Stil zu verfolgen; noch liegt sie im Popularitätsranking im Land auf Platz zwei.

Zusätzlich profitieren sollen Bundesligavereine sowie die indische Tech-Industrie von einer verstärkten Zusammenarbeit außerhalb des Platzes.

The DFL will also work towards extending Indo-German cooperation in the field of football by creating platforms and opportunities for Bundesliga clubs to explore technical and commercial partnerships in India,

heißt es im Statement. Diese Zusammenarbeit wird langfristig sehr wertvoll sein, insbesondere, da technologische Entwicklungen schon jetzt als Grundlage für künftig erfolgreiche Vereine und Verbände integriert werden wollen. Robert Klein kommentiert entsprechend:

We are extremely excited to be part of the growth story of Indian football and look forward to entering into further strategic partnerships in India. Not only are we intent on offering fans in India the opportunity to experience the Bundesliga in myriad ways, we are also extremely keen to create more opportunities for Indian footballers to excel on the international stage.

Vielleicht kann die Bundesliga so zur beliebtesten Liga in Indien aufsteigen. Zumindest aber können Clubs hier neue Fans und neue Partner, im Bestfall sogar technologische Pioniere, gewinnen; und somit eine wichtige Ausgangssituation schaffen, um das Einkommen und die internationale Relevanz – die zwangsläufig miteinander verknüpft sind und in digitalen Zeiten umso mehr – zu sichern.

AIK Solna bietet Karten für die Ewigkeit

Bei all der Unsicherheit im Hinblick auf die Entwicklung des so simplen und traditionellen Sports Fußball bleibt den Vereinen meist noch eine Sicherheit. Ein Fan bleibt im Normalfall lebenslang Fan desselben Vereins. Für viele ist es anders gar nicht vorstellbar. Auch wenn heute schon der Trend zu beobachten ist, dass weniger gegenüber Vereinen als eher gegenüber medial präsenten Top Stars Loyalität entwickelt wird, verlassen sich Vereine auf ihre jahrelangen Begleiter. Und sie tun gut daran, gerade diese mit besonderer Wertschätzung zu behandeln.

Der frisch gebackene schwedische Meister und Traditionsclub AIK Solna hat sich nun eine ganz besondere Aktion für Fans ausgedacht. Die Supporter erhalten die Möglichkeit eine Art Dauerkarte zu erwerben; allerdings gilt diese bis zum Lebensende. Sie kostet genau 189.100 Kronen (etwas über 19.000 Euro) und spielt damit auf das Gründungsjahr 1891 an. Außerdem werden 40.000 Exemplare angeboten.

Das Angebot kann sich für Fans durchaus lohnen, wenn sie lange genug ins Stadion gehen. Es zelebriert laut Website das Willkommenheißen von Fans jedes Alters, jedes Backgrounds, jedes Berufs. Fredrik Söderberg, Ticket und Marketing Manager bei AIK, das in einem Stockholmer Vorort beheimatet ist, meint:

Es wird wahrscheinlich kein großer Verkaufsschlager sein, aber vielleicht erinnert die Karte daran, dass AIK immer für dich da ist.

Mit der Karte für die Ewigkeit bietet AIK seinen Fans also eine tolle Option, versucht sich aber gleichzeitig langfristiges Engagement vor Ort zu sichern, das in Zeiten vermehrter digitaler Möglichkeiten zur Rezeption des Fußballs extrem wichtig wird. Und natürlich wäre jedes verkaufte Ticket ein Garant für Ticketeinnahmen, die man andernfalls erst in der Zukunft hätte generieren können. Tatsächlich wachsen die durchschnittlichen Zuschauerzahlen in der Friends Arena in Stockholm seit Jahren, wie Transfermarkt.de zeigt. Dennoch ist man bei AIK noch weit entfernt von einer Auslastung der Arena mit ihren mehr als 54.000 Plätzen.

Besucherzahlen in der schwedischen Allsvenskan in der Saison 2018, © Transfermarkt.de

Die Friends Arena ist mit deutlichem Abstand das größte Fußballstadion in Schweden und AIK hat im Schnitt beinah genau so viele Zuschauer wie Hammarby IF, ebenfalls ein Stockholmer Club. Möglicherweise schlagen ja doch ein paar mehr Fans bei den Karten auf Lebenszeit zu und das Stadion erfährt mit der Meisterschaft im Rücken noch mehr Auslastung 2019, der Verein weitere sichere Einnahmen.

Ob eine Expansion nach Indien als groß angelegte systematische Maßnahme oder eine Lebensdauerkarte als gut gemeinter Versuch, um die Fans auf lange Sicht ins Stadion zu locken. Die Möglichkeiten und Herausforderungen der Digitalisierung und des Wandels im Fußball überhaupt animieren doch zu innovativen Marketing- und Business-Lösungen, die zwar ökonomisch motiviert, aber auch tolle Geschichten hervorzubringen imstande sind. Mit der Ausrichtung „Fußball, wie er sein sollte“ und den Fans für die Ewigkeit bleibt also im digitalen Zeitalter noch Platz für die Fußballromantiker.

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Clubs Turn to EA Sports’ Digital Kits for Additional Revenue



Can you remember the days, even in this modern and evermore digitalised century, when football teams used to wear new kit designs for a couple of seasons? Those days are gone for good. Clubs and brands like Adidas, Puma, Nike or Umbro offer fans new kit designs every single season. And not only for the home kits, but away or European shirts as well. As fanbases tend to grow thanks to broader international commitments and strengthened Social Media reach, any new kit will eventually find its customers. Of course, new signings or special players play a big part in generating revenue. But so do special kits; presented for the growing audience of gaming, mainly FIFA, enthusiasts, EA Sports’ and Adidas’ digital kits, that entered club shops last week, will stand the clubs in good stead not only in terms of visibility and nous in reaching important audiences but also concerning additional revenue – midway through the season.

Digital kits transform into real life value

Last week Adidas and EA Sports announced a limited edition of some rather special jerseys for Manchester United, Juventus Turin, Bayern Munich and Real Madrid.

It hasn’t been the first time that the german brand and the top name in sports gaming have collaborated to bring new kits to the fans’ attention.

The kits for FIFA 18 Ultimate Team, © EA Sports

While last season’s digital 4th kits were only a treat for FIFA 18 Ultimate TEAM (FUT), this season’s versions will be available in FUT 19 and in official club shops or stores. Since they come in a limited edition, they’re likely to be in demand. Especially due to their rather unique designs. Manchester United’s kit for example – which may look odd to some, brave to others – reminds one of bees, symbol of the iconic city. That bond between bees and Manchester had been strengthened when after the horrific terror attack in 2017 that very animal had become a symbol for solidarity; people had bee tattoos done, Manchester United and City played with a bee on their shirts. The connection is clear to see, although it looks more like a leopard dress and is described as such, too:

A bold jersey for the digital age.

Still, that shirt, sold for 82 Euros, will promise some further income. Not that Man Utd, Real Madrid, Bayern or Juve really need it. It’s just a clever way of marketing.

It also shows that the biggest brands in football do understand a thing or two about engaging a very important audience. Mind you, old and young fans alike like EA Sport’s FIFA, but for the younger generations the digital game probably has a more prevalent value; eSports comes more naturally to those Digital Natives growing up unconscious of the times when the digital landscape and football business hadn’t merged so utterly.

So, fans can buy that 4th kit from Bayern Munich for nearly 90 Euros, in the most basic version.

The FC Bayern Munich 4th kit as presented in their online shop, screenshot FC Bayern Munich

The designs, some might argue, are more or less questionable. But Jürgen Rank, who ist the Adidas senior design director, told Sueddeutsche Zeitung that unorthodox designs keep people interested and teams in the media. An English Hip Hop artist wanted to wear United’s 4th kit on stage right away.

Those jerseys might become valuable rarities or maybe they will be forgotten sooner rather than later. What’s most important to the teams or the brands behind them is not the shirt, not even the extra revenue or media coverage; it is the blend of digital and real life demand, digital and real life customers, and therefore the instrumentalisation of digital gaming’s popularity and its increased social meaning for the sake of a very real and eventually simplistic objective: keep the fans and grow the income.

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Maßgeschneiderte Vereinsshops bei Amazon: Internationalisierung mit Absatzsteigerung



FAANG dominiert den digitalen Handel, das Marketing, die Suche und Vieles mehr. Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix und Google sind die Bezugspunkte dieses Jahrtausends, wenn es um digitale Präsenz geht. Keine Marke und kein Unternehmen kann sich dem entziehen – und auch Fußballclubs nutzen diese mächtigen Player längst, um digital und international als Verein zu wachsen, vor allem aber als eine Marke mit Wiedererkennungswert. Das reicht vom Entertainment-Bereich bis hin zur optimierten Produktsuche für Vereinsartikel. Amazon ermöglicht Clubs inzwischen individualisierte Shops auf der Plattform. Erste europäische Vereine wie Real Betis Sevilla oder der SSC Neapel gehen diesen Weg bereits für ihre Online-Strategie; er wirkt mindestens finanziell vielversprechend.

FAANG: Das Erlebnis Fußball findet längst auf anderen Kanälen statt

Vorbei sind die Zeiten, da am Samstag die Sportschau gesehen, am Montag der Kicker gelesen und der Lieblingsverein dann für ein paar Tage einfach Verein sein durfte. Wenngleich etwas überspitzt formuliert, ist in Zeiten besonders digitaler Wahrnehmung das Erlebnis Fußball ein Angebot, das sieben Tage die Woche und für 24 Stunden bereitsteht. Live-Partien bieten dies natürlich nicht, doch jeder Verein möchte seine Reichweite und Awareness in jeder Stunde, ja jeder Minute optimal ausgeschöpft und optimiert wissen. Denn das sorgt letztlich für stärkeres Engagement und für ein Mehr an Einnahmen.

Dass die Clubs und ihre jeweiligen Accounts bei Social Media bei Google ohne Umstände gefunden werden, ist nur logisch. Allerdings setzen die Vereine auch verstärkt auf eigene YouTube-Kanäle, die mindestens täglich frisch bespielt werden. Mit Hintergrundmaterial, Top 10-Listen zu den besten Toren oder exklusiven Interviews werden die Fans dort – wo sie ohnehin extrem häufig Highlight-Videos und ähnliches konsumieren – in den Bann des Clubs, der Marke gezogen.

Manchester United bietet einen aktuellen und informativen YouTube-Kanal, Screenshot YouTube (Manchester United Channel)

Eine Präsenz bei Facebook und natürlich Instagram gehört ebenfalls längst zum guten Ton. Hier definieren sich Marken. Vereine können dort ein breit aufgestelltes Publikum erreichen und zu Followern und im Bestfall Fans machen; außerdem lässt sich dort eine publikumsnahe Interaktion aufrechterhalten. Zum Beispiel dann, wenn über den Alltag der Fußballer mehr preisgegeben wird.

Das wiederum kann mit Verkaufsstrategien verknüpft werden. Für diese ist es ebenso wichtig als Marke einen Zugang zu mehr visuellem Entertainment zu finden. Juventus Turin zeigt im Netflix Original „Juventus Turin – Der Rekordmeister“ nach eigenen Angaben die Männer hinter den Trikots. Damit wird der Topclub in dem Bestreben bestärkt die eigene Marke international, etwa auch in den USA, zu etablieren; der Wechsel zum eher modisch simplifizierten Logo war bereits Teil dieser Strategie.

Juventus präsentiert sich auch auf Netflix stark, Screenshot Netflix

Bei Amazon Prime Video findet sich im Format All Or Nothing beispielsweise eine eingehende Darstellung zu Pep Guardiolas Zeit und Methoden als Trainer bei Manchester City. Das Format erfreut sich großer Beliebtheit und ermöglicht sogar ein Aufpolieren des Image.

Serien wie All Or Nothing können das Image aufbessern, Screenshot: Rezension bei Amazon Prime Video

Genau das ist für den Verein als Marke heute relevant, digital umso mehr. Amazon entwickelt sich als Plattform rasant, ist jedoch für seine Produktsuche und das unfassbar große Angebot bekannt. Genau diesen Aspekt nutzen die Vereine nun auch für ihre Strategien.

Clubs kooperieren mit Amazon und erstellen dort eigene Shops

Bei Amazon gibt es bereits erste gebrandete Shops von Vereinen. Dazu zählen der SSC Neapel und nun auch Real Betis Sevilla. Beide Vereine genießen in ihren Heimatländern großes Ansehen. Ihr internationales Renommee kann, besonders im Fall von Betis, aber verstärkt werden. Wenn im Zuge einer Internationalisierungsstrategie mehr Produkte ins Ausland verkauft werden wollen, bietet sich die Plattform Amazon dafür an.

Real Betis has millions of fans all over the world and is currently playing European competitions. It’s really important for us to get our official products closer to all our fans in and outside Spain and, thanks to Amazon, we are now open at five European countries at the same time. It is a new bid from Real Betis to be a global club through new technologies,

erklärt Ramón Alarcón, der General Business Manager von Real Betis auf der Website des Clubs.

Auch der italienische Traditionsverein SSC Neapel hat bei Amazon einen eigenen Clubshop eingerichtet. Und der zeigt sich sowohl in Sachen Layout als auch in Sachen Übersicht von einer sehr guten Seite.

Der Amazon-Shop des SSC Neapel ist beeindruckend aufgebaut (mit einem Klick aufs Bild gelangt ihr zur größeren Ansicht), Screenshot (Amazon-Shop des SSC Neapel)

Dabei werden nicht nur Kollektionen und besondere Angebote präsentiert, die Marke bietet zugleich noch den für Digital so wichtigen Entertainment-Faktor. In diesem Fall mit einem kurzen Clip im Graphic Novel-Stil.


Diese Kombination von Entertainment und Verkauf ist für die Markenbildung im internationalen digitalen Raum unheimlich wichtig und effektiv. Und weil Amazon als Plattform in der Produktsuche der absolute Platzhirsch ist, werden künftig sicherlich deutlich mehr Vereine auf diese Strategie zurückgreifen. Denn sie bietet Kunden einen schnellen und unkomplizierten Zugang zu den Produkten des favorisierten Clubs. Das bedeutet für die Vereine womöglich eine klare Absatzsteigerung. Selbst dann, wenn Amazon seinen Teil bekommt. Für Amazon bedeutet es hierbei, dass die Marktmacht dank der Kooperationen mit einem so finanzstarken Sektor weiter gefestigt wird.

FAANG wird die digitalen Strategien für Fußballclubs weiter beherrschen. Auf diese Player müssen sich die Marketing Manager und Co. weiter fokussieren. Hierüber werden schließlich ebenso die wachsenden eSports-Bereiche mit ihren jeweiligen Visuals, Artikeln oder News distribuiert. Doch für eine umfassende Internationalisierung sollten auf lange Sicht verschiedene Märkte im Auge behalten werden. China bietet etwa noch viele Potentiale, Alibaba, Tencent Weibo, Sina Weibo oder WeChat und Baidu sollten demnach unbedingt im Hinterkopf behalten werden. Für den Anfang ist ein individualisierter Vereinsshop auf Amazon aber sicher schon ein starker Kundenmagnet.

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