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© Green Room 2016
The Future of
Football Brands
2016/17 marks another landmark year in the development of British
football...
© Green Room 2016 2
More money
creates greater
disparity
01_
This season sees the first year of the new Premier League
TV ...
© Green Room 2016 3
The
opportunities
01_
Green Room see a number of exciting
ways to meet these challenges:
Build a compe...
© Green Room 2016 4
Southampton FC
Stadium Store
Our case
studies
01_
To help deal with huge match-day
peaks in footfall, ...
© Green Room 2016 5
The issues_
Growing &
maintaining
a fan base
02_
In the highly competitive marketplace, revenue
develo...
© Green Room 2016 6
The
opportunities
02_
Create more compelling experiences
and engaging interactions for fans
both in th...
© Green Room 2016 7
Our case
studies
02_
This small store has a
spectacular following, achieving
substantial online presen...
© Green Room 2016 8
The issues_
Keeping up
with supporter
expectations
03_
The fairy-tale story of Leicester City’s 2015/1...
© Green Room 2016 9
Connect your physical spaces with your
digital channels, online platforms and
forums to deliver a holi...
© Green Room 2016 10
Our case
studies
03_
Working alongside a consumer
psychologist, our exhibition
stand was designed to ...
© Green Room 2016
If you would like to discuss these
ideas further please do get in touch:
Studio
p: 0121 200 2828
105 Ass...
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Green Room - Future of Football Brands - Sector Insight

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Following our re-design of Southampton’s stadium store, we looked at challenges facing Football Brands and how these pinch points could become opportunities.

Discover how changing landscape of football brands requires new ways to optimise channels and maximise engagement.

The report centres around three pertinent questions:

1. How are football brands ensuring their channels are optimised to stand out in the competitive market and their alternative revenue streams are maximised?

2. Are football brands effectively planning to attract and engage both new and existing markets?

3. Elevating fans experiences and encouraging advocacy has great kickbacks, are football brands achieving this?

The paper also references cross-sector examples of successes that are relevant to this niche marketplace, offering inspiration through alternative ways of engaging.

Published in: Retail
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Green Room - Future of Football Brands - Sector Insight

  1. 1. © Green Room 2016 The Future of Football Brands 2016/17 marks another landmark year in the development of British football. As the world’s top managers join the Premier League and star players follow, focus on the English game continues to grow. With more money, new stadiums and sponsors, off-field developments are also matching the action on the pitch. As investment floods into the sport, stakes become higher, commercial relationships more complex and supporters more demanding. Growing access to the global market of sports fans challenges club’s brands to stand out to attract and react quickly to increasingly demanding and diverse supporters. The impactful influence of money The need to build meaningful connections with fans A continuing increase in consumer expectations In the following pages, we will unpack these challenges in more detail and examine the opportunities they create. We would love to hear your thoughts and opinions. We see three key challenges facing football club brands in the coming years
  2. 2. © Green Room 2016 2 More money creates greater disparity 01_ This season sees the first year of the new Premier League TV rights deal and with it another influx of money into the league and English game in general. Transfer spending continues to increase to record levels and the Premier league has the world’s most expensive player for the first time since Alan Shearer. But rather than making life easier for clubs, the influx of more money is predicted to further widen the class gap between ‘tiers’ of clubs. With every team receiving the same cut of TV money, alternative revenue streams will be more important than ever. Within this landscape, it can be easy only to look at each other for inspiration. In a market defined by competitive success, chasing your rivals can make it hard to differentiate your club consistently with only a few trophies up for grabs each year. The continuing influx of money also has the potential to affect fans relationship with their clubs, with rising ticket prices and club & player affluence creating a lifestyle gap that can be hard to bridge. The issues_ How are you ensuring that your brand is optimised to stand out in the competitive market and your alternative revenue streams are maximised? 01 League wide increase in TV money putting a greater emphasis on alternative revenue streams 02 FFP continuing to drive the need for higher revenue 03 ‘Tiers’ of teams being reinforced through financial power 04 An emerging need to differentiate within a success obsessed market 05 A growing sense of resentment in sections of support that money is more important to the clubs than them
  3. 3. © Green Room 2016 3 The opportunities 01_ Green Room see a number of exciting ways to meet these challenges: Build a compelling brand based on more than just competitive success that differentiates you from the crowd and resonates with your values & fans Create a more connected and engaging online experience that attracts and retains fans to your digital channels and retail offers Maximise the match-day revenue potential of your assets: • Increase retail efficiency & engagement • Increase hospitality uptake & retention • Activate your passive spaces; concourses, exterior spaces and touch-points outside the stadium Activate your asset portfolio away from match-days: • Retail & hospitality opportunities • Training ground & academy • Players & staff _Borussia Dortmund BVB’s belief in putting fans first is simple, however it has positioned them as one of the best and most veraciously supported clubs in Europe. Controlling ticket and beer prices has meant that whilst their match-day revenue is 50 times smaller than top Premier League clubs, their 80,000 seater stadium is always full and their fans are happy. The appeal of the club is so great (and prices so good) that 800-1000 supporters travel from the UK to watch every Dortmund home game. _The Flagship Store The Flagship Store at New Meadowlands Stadium is an excellent example of efficient and flexible retailing. In addition to dealing with huge match-day footfall the store also has to contend with serving both the New York Giants & New York Jets. Using dynamic digital content, projection, lighting and highly flexible fixtures, the store can switch between team modes efficiently or host both when they play each other. _Hotel Football Set up by members of the ‘Class of ‘92’, Hotel Football offers fan an experience specifically targeted to their need, allowing them to immerse themselves into the world of football for a whole weekend. To help publicise its opening the owners filmed an impromptu 5-a-side game on the roof of the hotel during construction between themselves and the builders.
  4. 4. © Green Room 2016 4 Southampton FC Stadium Store Our case studies 01_ To help deal with huge match-day peaks in footfall, a fluid, easily navigated and efficient store design was created, giving back crucial pre-match waiting time to the fans. A rich narrative was created to amplify the club values, engage fans and encourage them to explore the merchandise. For The North Face, ‘Bringing the outdoors in’ was achieved through the careful placement of tactile, natural and contextual references within the retail space. The #NeverStopLondon community was also born from the retail space, engaging advocates to amplify their enthusiasm for the brand. The North Face Flagship Store
  5. 5. © Green Room 2016 5 The issues_ Growing & maintaining a fan base 02_ In the highly competitive marketplace, revenue development is inexorably linked to the growth and development of a fan base. The Premier League has established itself as a global leader, opening doors to new markets for British clubs. However, within these markets, there are challenges to overcome. Clubs are not just competing with each other to stand out but also against clubs with an established global presence. Closer to home, there is the growing challenge of attracting a local youth market with diverse interests and higher expectations. Digital literacy mixed with global awareness and cheap travel mean young supporters can support Barcelona almost as easily as Bristol City. Against these challenges, it’s easy to forget about the heartland supporters whose needs may differ from those of the emerging fan. Cautionary tales abound of clubs taking the focus off their core, creating toxic relationships and silent stadiums. How are you planning to attract and engage these new and existing markets? 01 The need to build a presence in competitive overseas markets to grow additional revenue streams. 02 Challenges of attracting the emerging youth market. 03 Increase in consumer non-football interests vying for entertainment spend. 04 Increased desire from fans for connection and engagement; a dialogue rather than a passive relationship. 05 The need to keep the heartland happy against a landscape of change and development.
  6. 6. © Green Room 2016 6 The opportunities 02_ Create more compelling experiences and engaging interactions for fans both in the physical and digital realms Take the experience of your club with you when you travel with mobile retail, hospitality and fan experiences Create greater interaction and dialogue between club and supporter through digital platforms, activation events and physical experiences Maintain strong connections with the local supporter base through local activation activities and fan forums Green Room see a number of exciting ways to meet these challenges: _FC Barcelona New York HQ To help support the club’s push into North America, FC Barcelona have opened a new flagship HQ on Park Avenue, NYC. The HQ will support the clubs US academies as well as forging stronger partnerships with its brand partners and focussing on building its supporter base in America and beyond. _Facebook Sports Stadium Facebook has launched Facebook Sports Stadium, a new platform that allows fans to experience and interact with events. The social discussion and debate within the hub is as much of an attraction as following the event itself, providing a platform for fans to air their thoughts and interact with others with similar (or opposed) points of view. This creates a great opportunity for teams and brands to engage with fans in a live and relevant environment. _Hashtag United An amateur team who are watched every week by over 500,000 fans and will be featured in the upcoming Football Manager game. Using YouTube as a platform, Hashtag take a unique approach to football with heavy influence from gaming and social media to create ‘challenges’ and exhibition style games that attract a huge following to their YouTube channel, Instagram and Twitter accounts.
  7. 7. © Green Room 2016 7 Our case studies 02_ This small store has a spectacular following, achieving substantial online presence through it’s regular ‘retail theatre’ events, in collaboration with players, brand launches, events and competitions. The space also demonstrates great re-purposing of content for use within a physical environment. The new decentralised marketplace encourages ‘anywhere retailing’. Pop-up retail is therefore on the rise, particularly if it incorporates memorable experiences and a digital halo. The Flyknit Experience travelled across Europe, engaging customers and creating advocates.Pro Direct Flagship Store Nike Flyknit Experience
  8. 8. © Green Room 2016 8 The issues_ Keeping up with supporter expectations 03_ The fairy-tale story of Leicester City’s 2015/16 season ignited the imagination of football fans across the globe, generating renewed belief in the romance of the game but also heaping pressure on other teams to match their heroics. Whilst this has put huge pressure on teams to perform miracles on the pitch, supporter expectation of their clubs off the field has been growing over the last five years. With other retail and hospitality sectors taking leaps and bounds forward in the level of their consumer experience, football may be in danger of being left behind. From personalised retail experiences to interactive theatre, secret dining experiences to digitally enriched galleries, fans are engaging with highly immersive & emotional experiences that are setting their expectation levels. How are you elevating your fans experience of your brand? 01 Perception of increased money within the game and rising prices driving expectations 02 Consumer experiences from other sectors setting the benchmark 03 Need to challenge other sectors for fans ‘entertainment budget’ 04 Need to keep pace with sector leaders within the football market
  9. 9. © Green Room 2016 9 Connect your physical spaces with your digital channels, online platforms and forums to deliver a holistic experience The opportunities 03_ Elevate your retail and hospitality offers to deliver narrative that creates connection to the club in addition to efficiency Enhance your digital presence to deliver the emotion of match day and connect remote fans with the feeling of the club Activate the unexpected spaces in your stadium such as concourses to create a more emotionally charged experience Elevate your customer facing spaces through expressive sensory branding Green Room see a number of exciting ways to meet these challenges: _FC Barcelona In-store Digital Barcelona’s FCBotiga store offers customers a digitally enriched experience, leveraging their strong digital credentials to create a seamless online/offline experience for visitors through dynamic and engaging content. Included in the store is ‘Digital Locker’, a platform that allows customers to instantly view what their personalised shirt would look like as well as ordering and paying for it at the same point. The platform drove a 22% increase in sales in the first three months. _Levi’s Stadium Home to the San Francisco 49ers, the Levi’s stadium uses a range of technology innovations to improve its fans experience of the stadium. Stadium-wide wifi allows fans to remain connected while Bluetooth beacons can guide fans to their seats, whilst the app helps guide fans to bathrooms & concessions with the shortest queues, enables food to be delivered to their seats, manages their tickets & parking as well as giving access to instant replays. _Secret Cinema From small and simple beginnings Secret Cinema have grown and refined their model to deliver deep, immersive and emotionally charged experiences to thousands of customers a night. Using actors, stage dressing, sensory immersion and a flair for the dramatic they have elevated the cinema going experience from stale popcorn and sticky floors to a memory forming experience.
  10. 10. © Green Room 2016 10 Our case studies 03_ Working alongside a consumer psychologist, our exhibition stand was designed to provide the most compelling experience for visitors to our stand, surprising and delighting. Digital interactions were omnipresent and instinctive, but not overt as we challenged ourselves to design without screens being a focus. Challenge yourself in one of three digitally immersive games built for the retail space. As well as product trial, retail theatre, and emotional engagement, the interactions also had a 40% opt-in rate for social media. Green Room Retail Design Expo Stand Sun & Sand Sports Flagship Store
  11. 11. © Green Room 2016 If you would like to discuss these ideas further please do get in touch: Studio p: 0121 200 2828 105 Assay Studios, 141-143 Newhall Street, Birmingham, B3 1SF, UK Prinsengracht 463-HS, 1016HP, Amsterdam, The Netherlands 41 Corsham St, London, N1 6DR UK www.greenroomdesign.com Thank you

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