Best Club Marketing Initiative – non Premier League
Birmingham City FC
The Football Club recognised the pressing need for blood donation across the diverse demographics of the Second City and wished to raise awareness by supporting the NHS’ Give Blood campaign. As a result, it identified the online disruption caused by the announcement of incoming player transfers, across its Men’s and Women’s teams, as an appropriate platform to achieve this and paired new signings with case studies of people impacted by blood donation. Through a collaborative effort between Birmingham City and the NHS, engagement surpassing a reach of more than three million from the initial announcement posts alone was achieved and met with positive feedback from multiple stakeholders. These were supplemented by additional digital content, including bespoke video storytelling and infographics attempting to inform and dispel myths surrounding blood donation.
Not many clubs can say they have hosted a supporter from the Åland Islands – an autonomous region with a population of just 30,000. Millwall Football Club has orchestrated a colossal rise of international supporters attending fixtures at The Den from across the globe, by utilising our CRM system and our resources at hand.
We hosted over 5,500 international supporters over the course of 2022, which is over 2,000 more than 2019 – our last full calendar year of supporters being able to attend football matches. As well as attracting our foreign fans back to The Den after being absent for so long, we also gained a new bulk of international Lions.
From tweeting in Norwegian to sending out thank you letters from The Chairman to supporters in Japan, we have rolled out a variety of marketing measures in the past year.
With the continued rise of international Lions engaging with the club, we will be launching a tailor-made International Membership, using the comments and feedback from our international supporter surveys, to further enhance our connection with fans from each corner of the earth.
Norwich City FC
The process started with a simple question- how could we use our platform to potentially save a life?
At Norwich City, we recognise the wider role the Club plays outside of Football. We understand that we have a huge reach and challenged ourselves on how we could use our platform for good.
We uncovered a stat we knew would resonate with our audience- the age group most likely to commit suicide were males aged 45-49. The average age of our season ticket holders is 49.
We took the bold step of using the hook of our annual kit launch campaign, one of the most viewed pieces of content every year, to deliver a hugely impactful piece on mental health and specifically, the growing rates of male suicide. We were truly humbled by the outpouring of support and responses from fans who confirmed the campaign had prompted them to get the mental health support they needed.
Given the success, we then followed this up with meaningful activations on World Mental Health Day and Time To Talk Day, and have built a dedicated Mental Health resources hub online to support those in need.
Paphos district is one of the biggest in Cyprus and consists of multiple distant towns and villages, where some of the families doesn’t have an opportunity to easily travel and to come to the game with their kids. But the Club wanted such families and especially kids to know and to feel that they are a very important part of Pafos community and that their football club is much closer to them when they thought. This is how Pafos FC has launched it’s Christmas project “XMAS Presents” – one of the biggest and most unique projects ever created by a football club. The idea was simple but ambitious: to present a Christmas gift from the Club to every single kid at the Paphos region, from kindergartens to high schools. In general, Club has prepared 18.000 gifts for the kids with different age group, traveled 165 km, visited 155 communities and appeared in 76 schools, presenting unique packages to all of the kids. This project was widely broadcasted in all national medias, making Pafos FC the biggest agenda of the year.
St Mirren FC
St Mirren FC alongside partner, Kibble’s Communications team, implemented an integrated marketing campaign to launch the 22/23 away kit. The away kit was revealed through a video featuring lifelong St Mirren fan and Scottish DJ, Ewan McVicar with his chart-topping hit “Tell Me Something Good”. McVicar took a break from playing iconic festivals such as Glastonbury and Creamfields to join the first team, women’s team and youth teams to release the kit.
The campaign performance exceeded all expectations as away kit sales reached extraordinary levels with the first delivery completely selling out in only four days. To date, the club has sold 10x more strips compared to the previous season.
The home kit launch also exceeded sales targets with as St Mirren legends Tony Fitzpatrick, Hugh Murray and Stephen Thompson revealed the 22/23 home strip.
The momentum of the kit launches carried through to ticket sales as St Mirren has since experienced record-breaking match attendances. The club has been swept away by the ongoing support and the impact can be seen by St Mirren’s first-team performance on the pitch this season too.