Racepoint Group Hong Kong was tasked by client Warrior Football (apparel sponsor of Liverpool FC) to develop a strategy to galvanise and maintain fan engagement throughout Liverpool FC’s 2013 pre-season tour of Jakarta, Melbourne and Bangkok.
Racepoint Group’s strategy for Warrior Football primarily centred around online fan engagement, with the goal to elevate the brand’s social-media presence as a direct result of the content produced on the back of the tour.
Key objectives were to:
- Connect with fans globally ahead of the Liverpool FC tour
- Post interactive, memorable content (stills, video) in real time across all of Warrior Football’s global social-media channels to spark fan interactivity and engagement
- Generate strong organic growth across Warrior Football’s global social-media channels
- Engage local media and key opinion leaders to promote Warrior Football-led initiatives in each tour location.
To connect with fans ahead of Liverpool’s pre-season tour, Racepoint Group developed the ‘Make Your Mark’ campaign concept: a tattoo design competition run via Warrior Football’s global Facebook page.
Open to fans worldwide, the competition challenged fans to develop a tattoo design reflective of one of the three Liverpool FC tour destinations: Jakarta, Melbourne or Bangkok. Designs were required to have local relevance and include the Liverpool FC crest and Warrior logo.
Upon completion of the competition, three winners were selected by first team players Fabio Borini and Jonjo Shelvey, with the designs transformed into temporary tattoos that were given out by Warrior Football’s promotion team on each of the three match days. The winning tattoo designs also became the inspiration behind street-art installations that were activated across the three host cities during the tour.
During the tour, Racepoint Group’s communications strategy was built around engaging Liverpool fans online. Producing a regular stream of high quality, shareable content (stills and video) was the top priority.
“While it was important for Warrior Football to work closely with Liverpool FC’s social channels, in order for fans from across the globe to connect with content on the brand’s own platforms, we had to ensure the material had a clear point of difference to what the club was posting," said Emma Matuschka, account director at Racepoint Group. "Ensuring Warrior Football’s content stream was updated in real-time was also vital. Rather than focusing on what was taking place on the pitch, Warrior Football showcased what was happening off it, giving fans from across the globe a new perspective on the pre-season tour.”
Key, tailored off-pitch Warrior Football initiatives developed by Racepoint Group included a cello-graffiti tribute to Liverpool FC in Jakarta, an LFC v AFL challenge in Melbourne, and a customised tuk tuk reveal in Bangkok.
Over the course of the tour, there was dramatic growth across all of Warrior Football’s global social-media channels. Social media content was completely organic (no paid for or promoted posts on any channels). Content sharing was prompted by leveraging online ecosystems, Liverpool FC’s huge online following being a key one.
Growth within a two-week period:
- YouTube: 118.6 per cent increase in subscribers
- Instagram: 15.8 per cent increase in followers
- Twitter: 7.5 per cent increase in followers
- Facebook: 4.2 per cent increase in fans
- Weibo: 21.9 per cent increase in fans
The eight #WarriorOnTour videos produced during the tour generated more than 206,000 views.
Local media were engaged in each location, resulting in print and broadcast coverage for Warrior Football. Keeping in line with the campaign’s social-media focus, there was extensive online pick-up of Warrior Football generated content, most notably by the Mail Online (the world’s largest online news site), that featured stories about Warrior Football’s key initiatives in each of the tour locations.