Sports Team Promotion – 6 Ideas to Promote Your Club
In today’s competitive environment, there are thousands of sports club all fighting to get people’s attention. I hate to break it to you, but having a team of talented players is just not enough to stand out from the crowd.
Sure it’s a great advantage, but you really should be taking it to the next level if you want to promote your organization to a larger audience.
The good news is that the internet has made sports club promotion a lot more affordable and much easier for you to get the word out there. There’s no doubting that spreading the word about your organization is essential to gain new memberships and interest from athletes and potential sponsors out there.
After all, your club has bills to pay, too. Think about it,how are you marketing and promoting your club?
If you’re a sport team that’s just starting out or don’t know where to start, keep reading because we’re about to give you some good tips and promotion ideas.
It All Starts Online
What the first thing someone will do when they want to find out more about your team?
Yes, that’s right, they’ll hit up Mother Google.
In the digital age where everything is smartphone centered, it is important that you start your promotion and marketing online.
The Internet is the first place people will come looking for you and this is exactly why it is important that you start online. Around 90% of the US population uses the Internet today, and almost all of them search for information online.
Today’s sports experience is not confined to the stadium or even the television, more than half of all sports fans throughout the world prefer following their teams through laptops and smartphones.
In fact, these digital devices aren’t only used to watch the actual game but to search for game-related content during the match.
Viewers keep their tweet game strong during the match by hashtagging important events. The NBA, for example, encourages its viewers to tweet live by suggesting keywords on live events. If your keyword or hashtag is able to break into the Top 10, you can get instant fame.
During this digital age, your marketing strategy should be clever enough to engage modern fans. Sports experts suggest that you use videos, infographics and webinars to segment statistics with ingenious animations.
The best thing about such visual content is that it will give life to your team and players. The added benefit of creating and posting such content is that your fans will feel compelled to share it on their social media, but will talk about that in detail a little later.
The importance of visual content is clear from the fact that it provides 650% higher engagement rate.
Almost all social media platforms, including Facebook now, have accepted this and businesses all over the world are using different aspects of the Internet to promote what they have to offer.
Never Underestimate a Professionally Designed Website
Anyone who is looking for information about your sports club will be directed to your website.
This website will not only be available for fans but also new potential players, sponsors and press.
This is why it is imperative that you make a good first impression. If you are just starting out and don’t have a website yet, don’t worry because it is actually pretty easy to build one even if you aren’t skilled in the art of website design and development.
One of the best tools you can use to create your own online presence is WordPress.
WordPress is a free website content management system, that allows you to easily create and maintain a self-hosted website within minutes.
From social leagues to professional teams and athletes, like Usain Bolt and the Dallas Mavericks, there are many sporting organizations who are using WordPress to create their online presence.
A huge benefit of using WordPress is that you have thousands of free templates to choose from so you can easily customize and create a unique website for your team.
In addition to your choice of free WordPress themes, there are many great plugins to help you manage your club, optimize your content for search and really help you build an impressive online presence for your team.
Along with these free resources, you’ll be able to find heaps of premium WordPress themes and plugins as well. With over 25% of all websites on the web use WordPress as a CMS, and it is by far the most preferred system.
Unlike many self-hosted solutions, you’ll have a lot more options and flexibility to be creative with your site. You can choose a WordPress theme specifically built for sports club or turn to the good ol’ HTML to design your website. However, whatever you do, make sure you get a website that serves its purpose.
Here are a few things to pay attention to:
- The Design: Around 75% users will leave your site if it is not properly designed with an attractive and easy to use layout.
- The Speed: Your website should be quick to load. Anything that takes more than 2 seconds is slow, including images. As per reports, about 40% users will close your site if it’s too slow. You can use a speed testing tools like pingdom to check how fast or slow your site is.
- The Content: Content is the key! Make sure to have SEO friendly, original content that includes a mix of written content, images and videos. With a sports website, you should have match reports, highlights, and interviews with players.
- Provide Information: Provide your visitors all the information they need, including information about your team, the latest events and also contact information.
- Be mobile friendly: With 80% users using mobile devices to access the web, and 20% of these using ONLY mobile devices, it is important to make sure your website is mobile friendly.
Having an impressive sports website can lead to new opportunities for your club. You could potentially peak the interest of a new sponsor who will want to offer you a sponsorship, or perhaps a new player who finds your site and will want to join your team.
Fans will also enjoy coming to your site if it is well-designed and easy to navigate around. On the opposite spectrum, creating a poorly designed website could really turn people off and cause them to quickly leave your website.
After all, first impressions are everything. Make sure you leave a good one!
Engage Fans on Mobile
Mobile marketing is quite literally taking the world by storm. According to a research, there are around 3.65 billion unique mobile users throughout the world.
Moreover, a study conducted back in 2012 showed that 60% owners of tablets and mobiles used their devices to view sports related content each day.
Considering these facts, if you want to stay in the game, you must follow these trends and prove that you too can modernize according to society’s requirements.
Focus your efforts on Millennials and generation Z and you will start to see a pattern of successful promotion.
Engage with both these generations by providing them with new, unique and mobile-friendly content and you’ll have ¼ of the world in your pocket.
Take example of UFC which has come out with content specifically designed for the mobile audience, including Android and iOS games. With such tactics you can even reach the audience that does not know of your existence yet.
Share Your Story
Every club has a story. Work together with your team to create engaging stories which will attract instant connections with fans.
The sports fans which you want today are ones who embrace the sports lifestyle and interact with you and the club regularly. And the only way you can achieve that goal is to create awe-inspiring content that moves people.
The best sports marketer will understand the importance of engaging stories and create a community of followers who live and breathe for the latest highlights.
Getting your message forward and telling your unique story will help fans understand your journey and humanize with you.
On the contrary, if you stick to the facts and keep feeding them with robotic information and stats, you will be seen as nothing more than a company that works for its profits.
Making sure your content, whether text or visual, connects and interacts with the reader/viewer.
Your stories can be shared in the form of a written interview or blog, a Podcast or even as a video that can be uploaded on different video sharing platforms like YouTube.
In addition to this, you can also reach other websites that promote sports to share your story. This way you will be able to reach their audiences as well.
Believe in the Power of Social Media
Social media has long since become the heart of the Internet. Whenever there’s new information or game scores about your favorite team, the first place where it will be updated is social media.
If you are smart sports marketer, you will realize just how important these channels are. Your sports club can not only make use of the level of daily activity which occurs on these platforms but also engage potential fans through engaging and thought-provoking content.
However, be careful not to dive in unprepared because social platforms like Facebook and Twitter have gotten sophisticated and you need to create a sound social media strategy to get started.
One of the best examples which you can find of sports club making use of social media is Real Madrid. Their Facebook page currently has more than 90 million fans and according to reports, it was named the most popular sports club in social networks in 2015.
One of the reasons why it has been so successful in attracting fans is because it has become a source of rich information for Madridistas and is published in five different languages.
The sports club also uses social media to encourage fans to join membership programs. For instance, when you join the eMadristas club, you get the chance to view even more compelling information about the club.
These social media platforms don’t only offer the club to connect and interact with fans but also helps sponsors publish their messages on the channels.
It Takes Offline Effort Too
Yes, promoting your sports club online is important, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that you should stop all offline efforts.
Real life promotion can help raise awareness for your team and it’s all about leveraging what you already have.
Word of mouth will prove to be much more effective and you can start small by promoting your team and upcoming events to the extended network of your team and its members. It will be easier for you to win the trust of these people because they already know you and your story.
However, if you want this to work, you must know that you need to keep everyone informed so people can actually feel like they are a part of the team.
Share your event calendar with your teammates, get your fans to follow you on social media and subscribe to your email list. Let everyone know when your team has a big event coming up.
When this word of mouth promotion is combined with online marketing, you’ll get spectacular results in the form of loyal fans and supporting sponsors.
Apart from using word of mouth to spread the word around, you can also use posters or flyers to post around your local area to share important news.
Promotion through print media has always been a great way to get your word out there and if you create professionally designed posters, you can even share it on your website and social networks.
On the other hand, involving the local radio and newspaper will help you tell your story in an interesting way.
One of your club representatives or players can make an appearance on a relevant program to talk more about the game. Ideally, someone with a lot of knowledge and perhaps a little fame should be chosen to represent your team on such a platform. Radio shows and podcasts tend to have a huge reach so you might be able to attract fans this way.
It doesn’t matter if you have a big or small sports club because promoting it is essential not only for its success but also for survival.
Though these marketing techniques and strategies will require effort and time, they will be worth it.
Use the Internet and all it has to offer and you will be able to get ahead of competitors and may even match the standards of the big leagues.
Are you thinking about creating a sports team website using WordPress? Be sure to check out SportsPress Pro, it’s an all-in-one sports club management WordPress plugin with a suite of useful features. If you have any questions, feel free to get in touch with us.