Domains of expertise

Sports Communica-tion

Are you fully aware of the difference between sports communication and sports marketing? These terms are used incorrectly all the time. 

Here’s the short summary: communication is the exciting part of marketing and innovation: it’s getting your message or efforts out to the outside world whereas marketing defines your strategy. 

Discover the process and different building blocks of a good sports communication & advertising strategy, an overview of channels you should keep in mind, and the services we offer. 

Marketing vs sports marketing

Sports marketing vs sports communication

You can't have communication without content and you can't have marketing without communication. But unfortunately you have a lot of content without a clear marketing or communication strategy behind it.

Marketing is all about your strategy and WHAT you’re going to do. You create a product or service for a specific target audience, define your positioning, USPs and a pricing that matches what your offer is worth to your ideal customer. You define the best channels to reach and/or retarget your persona or ideal customer. 

Communication digs deeper. You will define HOW to reach your persona by defining campaigns, or an ongoing presence on communication channels with a clear goal. A campaign could be the launch of a new product line, where we will create a video an promote it through 3 social media posts, 1 mailing, 2 Facebook ads and a launch event. 

Content refers to the video itself, the social media post or mailing incl. message, copy & visuals. 

 

Our definition of sports communication?

“Any type of interaction you have with a business can be labelled as communication. Including packaging of products, customer service, digital information on a website or social media, or simply direct contact with a sales person. Sports communication is the exact same thing but in a sports environment.”

Importance of a good marketing strategy

Inbound (or content) marketing is a type of marketing that attracts people through your marketing funnel until they become loyal ambassadors.

Communication is the translation of your internal business and values to the outside world – or internally to your employees and stakeholders. So if you want to guide your customers through each step of the inbound marketing funnel these will have to be defined first.  

This is why doing a quick audit of the marketing strategy is the first step of any communication project. If everything is in place to close your ideal customer, the work can start to attract hem. 

As mentioned before, outbound marketing where you just shout as loud as possible to get your product ad out doesn’t work anymore. We’ve evolved from a sales model to an inbound marketing model, where you need high quality content and tools that provide added value to your customers in order to pull them into your sales funnel. No matter the goal, you should segment your communication efforts and channels into the different stages of the sales funnel, so that you clearly know where to prioritize.

Guide your customers through each step of the inbound marketing funnel by fine-tuning your marketing strategy.

Website: the core of your sports communication

Often organizations spend a lot of time and money to attract users to their website (cfr. Communication strategy). But once the users reach your website and there is no clear information, doesn’t have the right Call To Actions, or your offering isn’t clear,  communication becomes just a waste of money.

When users reach your website and can't find what they're looking for, your sport communication efforts become useless.

Sports communication lifecycle

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Ready to launch a new campaign,  or increase your ongoing presence on a channel as part of the “Attract”-phase of your inbound marketing? These are the 5 steps you should define to get the results you’re after. 

Goals & KPI's

Goals

“If you don’t know where you’re going, you’ll never get there.” Dustin-Peltier Robson

Knowing if you’re successful starts with knowing what the expectations are. Same accounts for communication. So create a clear goal before you start and map it towards the inbound marketing stage, as each stage has different KPI’s. 

Goals per stage of the inbound marketing funnel when doing sports communication.
Sports Communication KPI's will differ based on the funnel stage of your goal.

KPI's

KPI’s (key performance indicators) make your goals measurable and allow you to track whether you’re well on your way towards reaching your goal and where you need to adjust.

Your main KPI will reflect the end goal you determined above. It’s important to have subgoals as well. 

  • Attract: Reach, followers and clicks (website visits).
  • Convert: Comments, shares, e-mail subscriptions, e-book downloads.
  • Close: number of sales
  • Delight: Number of reviews, shares, referrals

Your sports communication strategy

The following aspects will have to be created. In order to create a good strategy you have to be perfectly aware about what the needs of your ideal customer are, on which channels they’re active online, what they’re willing to pay and which information they need to receive to perform your desired action. This will obviously depend strongly on the type of sports they’re in as they all have their own subculture and values.

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Communication Strategy

Defining channels & campaigns

Communication Strategy

Map your campaigns on a horizontal axis, all your channels on a vertical axis and indicate for each campaign on which of these channels you'll be present.
Download template
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Media strategy

Selection of communication channels relevant for your business.

Media Strategy

As part of your marketing strategy, you'll select all communication channels per target group that are relevant for your business.
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Campaign strategy

Define the strategy within your campaign(s).

Campaign strategy

This is the detailed version of the campaign where you will select the target audience, message, communication channels, KPI’s and budget.

Communication vs content

When you defined the above, you can start making it actionable. We use the following steps to define details: 

  • Content strategy:  you will define with type of content item (eg a video, infographic, Facebook live video, article) you will use per campaign, going into the design. 
  • Communication planning: Transfer your strategy into an actionable timeline, so that it’s clear what needs to be posted when.
  • Content & action plan: by combing the 2 above, you’ll have a clear view on which content needs to be created or which actions you should take (eg. schedule a fotoshoot). 

Your marketing strategy

Not every channel is the same, each one needs a different tone of voice, type of images (&sizes) & content. 

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Owned

How will you offer value to your customer?

Product

How are you going to provide value for your customer. Have you thought about flexible intro-offers to lower the barrier for new customers? Which product launches are scheduled and which promotions throughout the year.
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Earned

What is your offering worth to your customer?

Pricing

What is the pricing you're going to implement towards different offerings and different customers. Have you thought about packages, upselling offers and loyalty pricing? Will your pricing be the same across all channels?
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Paid

Where will you sell your product or service?

Place

Where are you going to sell your products? Through your own webshop? Through affiliates? Amazon, bol.com or Coolblue? Or brick & mortar stores. Will this approach be equal across countries?

Planning & implementation

Execution is everything. It’s all about having the right team, tools and processes will be crucial to execute your strategy successfully. 

How and when will you execute your sport marketing strategy? That's one of our specialties at MySueno.
By analysing what you do you can quickly adjust and optimize your communication strategy.

Analytics & tracking tools

Without data and analytics you’re exploring the world of communication completely blinded. Each channel has their own reporting tools. For SEO you’ll want to install Google Search Console, whereas Facebook business manager will give you all the details about Instagram and Facebook. 
 Here are the basic tools we implement in any communication project which give you the power to guide your users through the funnel and ensure reporting. 

The standard reporting tool that tracks your website. 

Gives you an heatmap of where your website visitors are clicking. 

Allows you to retarget website visitors.

Add forms where users can subscribe to your newsletter. (Plug-ins or e-mail provder)

Store your generated leads in your CRM system to keep track of their progress through the sales funnel. 

Sports communication reviews

How can we help?

Sports Communication - how we can help

SEO is one of the communication channels that’s been least taken advantage of. One because it’s ever changing and quite challenging to set-up. Two because you need experts in the field in order to compete with the ever growing content online. SEA is often a black box, that’s being used but has much more to offer. I’ll help you to align both and take over Google together. 

Influencer marketing is the biggest growing communication channel. I’ll help you set-up a complete influencer strategy, ranging from the value your offer, returns you’re expecting, how to select matching influencers, organizing a content & activation calendar plus the analytics of it all. 

Sponsorships will always play a big role in any sports marketing strategy. Though many companies invest hugely in events, teams or athletes, very few reap the benefits to the fullest. Creating a good portfolio strategy, an in-depth content & activation plan and analytics to give you insights in what’s happening,  will help increase your ROI of your sponsorship.  

Social media channels and their respective audiences are constantly changing. Have you heard about Twitch? Do you know WhatsApp is becoming a sales channel? Did you know that Facebook is not  dead even though it seems like Instagram is taking over? Let’s decide the most relevant channels for your target audience, and create an actionable and channel specific content & ad planning to ensure success. 

PR is basically free media space, so it should be part of any communication strategy. But it takes more than a simple e-mail or launch event to actually get that coverage. Let’s work on building long-lasting relationships and a yearly PR planning to build your brand in the PR space. 

Whether you’re organizing an  event, have a booth present or sponsoring one, a good communication strategy before during after is what will get you the ROI you want. Fun activations focused on data capturing will  ensure you can connect with users long after the event is finished.  

Content is king is not one of the most used marketing quotes with no reason. In a world that’s full of cluttered messages screaming for our attention, high quality content is what you need to reach good results in your communication strategy. 

You might’ve heard people say ‘e-mail is dead’. The numbers tell a different story though. With social media being under fire and taking more control, together with stricter GDPR regulations which might endanger retargeting options, it’s crucial to build your own audience and to nurture your leads. 

Looking for the best online blogs, magazines or billboards to increase your brand awareness? We’ve got your back. 

We all know video is becoming more important, so why are so many brands and organizations not using it yet? Both YouTube and Display advertising are a good way to increase brand awareness. 

Discover all about Sport Communication and how we can help you at MySueno.
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