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Pitch Marketing Group

Core disciplines: Branded content, Public relations (PR)

Engaging the Nation in Women's Football

Little Mix x Lionesses

 

Input

The FA were seeking to raise awareness of women’s football and particularly the England Women's senior team, the Lionesses, ahead of the UEFA Women’s Euro 2017.

In a cluttered sports marketing landscape, it is challenging for women's football to engage audiences via mainstream marketing channels.

Women’s football is not a primary passion amongst The FA’s core target audience of 8-16 year old girls.

The FA want to build a following and brand equity in “The Lionesses”.

 

Insight

We had to engage and inspire 8-16 year old girls without alienating existing fans, and in doing so create a movement of support for the Lionesses that crossed the cultures of entertainment and sport with real authenticity.

 

Idea

Salute The #Lionesses

A campaign to galvanise national support for The Lionesses, fronted by England’s most popular girl band, Little Mix, encouraging sports fans to back the England Women's team.

 

Implementation

We recruited the UK’s most famous girl band, Little Mix, to create a football-themed music video to hit song ‘Salute’ to act as a catalyst to drive social engagement with the Lionesses, specifically empowering young girls to show their support. The video played on the track’s inspirational lyrics, giving us the perfect call to action:

'Ladies all across the world
Listen up, we're looking for recruits
If you with me, let me see your hands
Stand up and salute'

Featuring the Lionesses as the stars, alongside Little Mix, England men’s footballers and grassroots women’s footballers, the video was used to launch the ‘Salute the #Lionesses’ social media campaign.

Pitch engaged hundreds of celebrities, influencers and FA partners to submit their salutes, in turn encouraging  submissions from boys, girls, men and women across the country.

 

Impact

The campaign increased awareness of the Lionesses by 13%

Created a nationwide wave of support across traditional and social media ahead of the tournament, generating over 150 items of earned media coverage across broadcast, print and online.

Generated over 8,000 salute UGC interactions from fans, celebrities and influencers on social media throughout the tournament, delivering a combined reach of 60 million

Increased the @Lionesses social audience size:

155% on Twitter

118% on Instagram

Generated a 412% increase in engagement across @Lionesses Twitter & Instagram

Generated an uplift in positive sentiment across @Lionesses:

269% on Twitter

110% on Instagram

Created a newsworthy and engaging video featuring Little Mix, viewed 780,000 times across earned, owned and shared channels

Ultimately the video drove awareness of England’s participation in the UEFA Women’s Euro, resulting in record-breaking audience viewing figures of over 4m for the Lionesses’ final game on Channel 4.

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