Football League bolsters insight to build club brands

The Football League is to launch its first online research panel for member clubs in the hope of providng sponsors with deeper insight when planning campaigns.

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Football League chiefs to use fan insight to help develop new brand building initiatives.

The Changing Room initiative launches this month and lets supporters share their opinions through discussion groups, forums and surveys on a number of topics.

The panel will feature 15,000 opted-in supporters who were chosen via the Football League’s and specific clubs’ customer databases throughout December. A more detailed profile of each supporter is being developed this month to ensure each of the League’s 72 member clubs are represented within the online community.

Feedback from the panel will be used to offer the League’s partners insight into trends and opinions amongst supporters and help them develop more targeted campaigns. Additionally, the League will review the data and use it to inform its commercial strategy moving forward.

The Football League, which distributes the money it collects from sponsors to member clubs, hopes the venture will uncover “bold and innovative ways to engage fans.”

Richard Heaselgrave, chief commercial officer at The Football League, says: “Fans are at the very heart of football, which is why we are always looking into effective ways of hearing their collective voice.

“The introduction of The Changing Room offers supporters the chance to have their say on topics affecting them, their club and The Football League as a whole. This gives them the opportunity to help shape how we approach important issues within The Football League, and the feedback we receive will be invaluable.”

The panel marks the latest bid from the League to boost revenue for its clubs. Last year, it bolstered its commercial team with several new appointments to exploit growing overseas interest and also signed a deal with financial firm Capital One to replace Carling as the League Cup sponsor in June.

Data marketing is becoming increasingly important for football clubs particularly the country’s less celebrated sides, who are turning to ECRM initiatives to build long-term relationships with young supporters.

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