Digital Sport London – Three things to look out for

The next instalment of Digital Sport London is only three weeks away.

We’ll be talking sports marketing in the digital world with Georgina Lewis, Head of Marketing at the FA, Gideon Reeves, International Commercial Director at Bleacher Report, Raj Mannick, Head of Sport at Yahoo! Sport, and Steve Madincea, Managing Partner at Fantastec.

Along with Rupert Pratt, I had a great call with the panel this morning. We chatted about the digital media landscape and what each of the organisations represented are doing in this space – how they’re using digital to get their own stories out there, or even tell the best stories off the pitch.

More specifically, though, we talked about three big areas we’ll be seeing much more of over the coming months and years as the dust settles on digital transformation and best practice starts to emerge. So this is a flavour of what we can expect on March 28th.

Going direct to Fan

The FA is an old and traditional organisation, dating back to 1863 and owing its foundation to a man named Ebenezer Cobb Morley. Yet in the past year, it’s been able to position itself at the forefront of fan culture and tone of voice through an overhaul of its digital media strategy.

We all remember the World Cup squad announcement, the fact the England players were able to be themselves and project their personalities to a wide audience, and the positivity they radiated in the summer of 2018.

Scratch behind that surface and you see innovative initiatives like the Lions’ Den Youtube series – a live show during the tournament that proved to be a massive hit – or the FA Cup’s social media strategy, which has also been a real success.

Off the Pitch Content

Take for example the FA Cup match this year between Manchester United and Reading, when Alexis Sanchez sat in manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s seat. It’s a trivial moment in the game, but it’s the type of moment that fans remember.

Just look at the engagement.

Take a look at Bleacher Report’s incredibly popular House of Highlights and you’ll see a similar thing: the sporting action is clearly what fans came for, but they’re staying to see the ongoing reality TV show that is live sport.

New Technology

For such a massive buzz word of the moment, this is arguably one of the least-understood concepts out there right now. Say ‘blockchain’ and most minds will naturally float to bitcoin and cryptocurrency, and while blockchain technology is a fundamental principle of it, the tech also has uses outside of crypto.

It’s a secure way of recording transactions – so will we see it being used in sport by clubs and leagues for trading cards and other transactions?

And then there’s VR and AR – we know how current mainstream technologies have disrupted sport, but what’s the scope for these more fringe technologies to really take their place in the repertoire of sports teams, leagues and publishers to produce content and market sport to fans?

Don’t miss all this and more at Digital Sport London on 28th March at Pinsent Masons in central London – get your ticket below!

About author

Chris McMullan
Chris McMullan 831 posts

Chris is a sports journalist and editor of Digital Sport - follow him on Twitter @CJMcMullan_

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