Published June 12, 2018 on GiltEdgeSoccer.com
There’s no doubt that the surprise team of this season’s Champions League campaign were Liverpool, flying through the group and knockout stages in record-breaking fashion on their way to a final showdown with Real Madrid. The front three of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino produced some of the most remarkable moments of the entire competition, while the likes of Virgil Van Djik, Dejan Lovren, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andrew Robertson developed a formidable defense.
The exciting run to the final brought a new level of exposure to the club in America. Although its name is known on a global scale, there’s no better opportunity to capture the attention of neutral fans than the Champions League final. Realizing this, we decided to put efforts in the weeks leading up to the game behind a broad influencer campaign.
How It Worked
Utilizing a large, ranging list of American-based influencers, we crafted a plan targeting both neutral fans and established fans alike with the aim of organically growing @LFCUSA’s American audience. Armed with merchandise specific to the Red’s Champions League run, we asked influencers from coast to coast to help us give it away.
We developed a plan to have each influencer host a day-long “raffle” on their feed, which would require their audience to retweet an initial post announcing the giveaway and follow @LFCUSA to win some of that sweet, red swag. Their posts would convey that this is a massive moment for their team, and they want all their followers to join them in supporting them.
To help engage with a variety of cross-sections in American soccer fandom, we reached out to influencers in a variety of circles. From professional wrestlers and actors to travel bloggers and local tv personalities, the response to our giveaway plan was phenomenal. Using influencers who are clearly passionate about the club and devoted to growing its influence in the states made for authentic, engaging content promoting the game and @LFCUSA – none more than this piece recorded by WWE Superstar and lifelong Liverpool fan Sheamus.
While the final didn’t go Liverpool’s way, the campaign was a great success, with 15 influencers participating and generating an average of more than 300 retweets and nearly 1,200 likes per post. From start to finish, @LFCUSA gained nearly 1,100 followers, which is an 800% increase from follower growth during previous weeks.
We were able to accomplish the primary goal of increasing the account’s American-based audience, while also developing relationships with influencers for future projects, sourcing user-generated content from winners all over the country and establishing the account as one that will surprise and delight fans. Don’t ever underestimate the power of a free t-shirt!