Sports Content Summit: Liverpool FC on how to design digital content as a club

By 20th March 2020 No Comments

The club has seen major growth online with through its social media channels

Speaking at the Broadcast Sport Content Summit this month, Liverpool FC head of social media, Adam Hulme, and head of digital video, Mark Volante, revealed how the club thinks when designing content for fans.

The club has seen major growth in followers of its social media channels in recent years, mirroring the success the team is having on the pitch.

Volante explained where this improvement has come from, pointing out that a change in rights agreements made a huge difference for them: “I think from a club point of view we made a conscious decision about three or four years ago that we need to change our video strategy across video.”

“In fact, I don’t think we had a strategy on video. The reason we had to adapt and change was because of more generous rights as a club and also just changes in how people consumed video”

Hulme agreed: “One of the big things was the rights cycles completely changed for us as a football club. Before we had a 72 hour window which we couldn’t publish for, and in football in three days the narrative’s moved on.”

“So, with the new rights cycle we could get two minutes of match footage out before Match of the Day on a Saturday which has just been massive from our perspective. It’s allowed us to join in the conversation about our own moments a little bit more – which we’ve never been able to in the past.”

Volante continued: “I suppose as part of that [change] we just stripped everything back and asked ourselves where can we add value in the video ecosystem amongst broadcasters, fan media, and other sports media publishers.”

“The one thing we identified early on and maybe we hadn’t always made the most of was we had access. We had access to the players, we could bring the fans closer to the players than anyone else. That was our big USP. As a part of that, all of our focus was on how we can create content that really shows the human side, the entertainment side, and the personalities of the Liverpool footballers.”

He added: “Outside of our rights holder content as well, we just try to evoke emotion. We’ve almost got three or four buckets of things. It might be emotive storytelling, where we turn the camera back on the fans. If it’s player led we go for personality driven content.”

“If we’re going to take people behind the scenes we don’t just want to put a camera in the foreground of the shot and say it’s behind the scenes, we want to get them closer to the training ground, we want to show them an alternative angle of a matchday.”

Hulme built on this: “It’s also making it relatable to us, to everyone in this room. We can have stuff where Andrew Robertson is going to a food bank and discussing the issues they’ve got, and a week later he’s discussing what’s your favourite biscuit.”

“Everyone could have that conversation, so it’s breaking down the barriers of however much money the players are on a week and making them relatable to us as fans.”

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