Today’s post I want to touch on the Marketing strategy of soccer or the lack of it here in the USA. After living in a country that lives, breathes, and eats soccer, it makes me wonder, is there even a true marketing strategy here in the US for soccer. Like I said in yesterday’s post, the US has some outstanding players, a hard working national team, but there seems to be no drive or fight within US Soccer’s leadership/owners to capitalize on the most watched sport in the world.
Yes, bringing big name players to the country to play the beautiful game does help with news coverage from time to time; lets take an outstanding spokesperson and player of the game, David Beckham, he came to the US back in July of 2007 and at the time got lots of news coverage, yes he has increased the fan base of the LA Galaxy and made many children around the country take a look/interest in the sport. However, the US Soccer leadership have not capitalized on it, the answer isn’t spending money on big name players from around the world, it is about spending the money on marketing the sport to their own great countrymen and children that play the sport, turning more of the young children that think American Football or Basketball is the only sport that is the only respected sport over to Soccer should be the number one goal. That way tomorrow’s National team has a larger section and a greater fan base.
So you know… You can make the same kind of money if not more playing soccer over American Football!
We need to find the way to get the single minded view that soccer is a “girls sport” out of the minds of the America people. Even if more of the best players in the world came to the US to play soccer it wouldn’t help. The issue is with leadership, marketing, money and the TV/news coverage. For a country that has so much love and passion for every sport their countrymen and woman compete in around the world, they just can’t get their mind and hearts behind the sport of soccer. If they could, the US soccer team would be #1 in the world one day…
In my post yesterday, I said in yesterdays post the way I found out about the US Men’s Soccer team playing an international friendly game against Scotland here in Jacksonville, Florida. I shouldn’t have to read the headlines of a UK newspaper to find out about an upcoming game here in the US, and this was for the US Men’s National team, very sad that it isn’t even worth 30 seconds news coverage.
Even this evening the US Men’s National team are playing one of the greatest sides in the world, Brazil, wait for it… on Fox Sports there is nothing about the game, however there are three interesting storys: EURO 2012 Preview: France, EURO 2012 Preview: Italy and the best of all Meet the “David Beckham of Polo”. It is good to see news on Soccer, it would be more fitting of a country news company to back its own countrymen to have something about the National team, even if it is just a friendly match…
You’re right, I should read things like sports illustrated, oh wait a minute, I do, with my life being busy these days, I only get to glance at the headlines on sports illustrated and to find soccer, and if you don’t know, you need to go to its own section of the website to find out anything important… However, I don’t need to do that for NBA, MLB, NFL, NASCAR, NHL or even the NCAA. Yes, this shocks me for sure; college football is looked at higher than the most watched sport in the world… I can even learn about high school American Football on TV. However, I would be lucky to see 3 US professional soccer games a week or see anything on daily news coverage.
I know reading this, you are thinking I should be going to places that focus mainly on US Soccer, but my point here is; you cannot increase people’s interest in a sport when high school/college football is seen as the #1 sport over soccer.
US Soccer has a great time ahead to make a difference; the run up to the 2014 World Cup tournament, the US will be hosting games like Real Madrid vs Juventus, Real Madrid vs Glasgow Celtic and Real Madrid vs Los Angeles Galaxy, these are just a section of games this summer being held in the USA that any person that is not used to soccer would find great joy in watching or attending…
One of the things we do have to look forward too as a country is the new head coach on the US Men’s National Team, Jürgen Klinsmann, a player that is highly respected around the world, has played at the highest level and knows what it is like to win the world cup. If any coach could bring so much passion to a team it would be Jürgen Klinsmann. The US Men’s National team has an outstanding chance under Jürgen Klinsmann. All they need is a little more support and respect from their own country!!!
Each day I hear about how much passion the US has for its countrymen and woman… Well the men playing soccer around the world are your countrymen also. A country that likes to dominate in everything they do, surprises me that the nation (I am not including the the small fan base) doesn’t feel the love or passion to unite behind their National team in the sport that is played by every country in the world!
A little respect to the countrymen that play soccer would be taking the time to learn more about the sport; that they play as a way to support their families and the love they have for their country… That country is your country the United States of America!!!