Many a football fan has been complaining over the last few years about how team owners are investing (ruining?) in the sport and running it like a business. While the jury is out on that and that discussion could be for another forum, one thing is for sure - clubs are taking to social media like businesses and innovating on the same.
With the transfer window currently open, social media is the place flans flock to, for news about players potentially joining (or leaving) the club they follow. And football clubs have joined in the fun with interesting ways to showcase the transfers.
Liverpool FC listened to its fans who were begging for an announcement on Mohamed Salah. Almost every post from the football club on social media had fans replying and calling for an announcement on the player’s move to the club. So, when the deal was finalised, the club decided to have fun; an announcement with a video featuring the player going through some of those tweets was created with very own hashtag, ‘#AnnoucedSalah’. Along with that video, more video content with the same hashtag was created, which generated buzz across platforms.
Markus Breglec, marketing and media director, Liverpool Football Club, described the campaign: “The #AnnouncedSalah campaign demonstrates that Liverpool FC is at the forefront of creativity and innovation. Digital and social media both play a huge role in shaping today’s news cycle, so it was important to us to announce the Salah transfer in a creative and inventive manner whilst also engaging with our fans providing new and original content.”
Other clubs seem to have followed suit with innovative hashtags and videos to announce new signings.
Soon after the Salah announcement, Arsenal announced their record signing, Alexandre Lacazette with the hashtag, '#LacANewSigning'. The announcement was made on Twitter by responding to a fan’s tweet about the signing.
Moving away from the Premier League, Italian Club, AS Roma unveiled the club’s new signing, Lorenzo Pellegrini through a game of FIFA on an Xbox. The player in the game scored a goal and celebrated by revealing the name Pellegrini on the back of the shirt. The film goes on to reveal that it was Pellegrini himself on the controller, having scored the goal.
Aston Villa took to a Whatsapp style conversation to announce John Terry’s arrival at the club. Club owner Dr Tony Xia added John Terry to a WhatsApp conversation with his club manager Steve Bruce to break the news of the ex-Chelsea captain joining.
With the transfer window open until 31 August, and the rumour mills abuzz there are going to plenty of more hashtags to announce new players. We’ll have to wait and watch whether they can trump any of the above in creativity though!