An exploration of sports content, storytelling, digital and social media. Speaking to players, executives, coaches, creators, journalist and specialist about their sporting passions.
Ken Lambert: Vissel Kobe communications, stars and digital
On Sports Content Strategy, I like to investigate those clubs, leagues and organisations which back their ambitious intentions with a clear, determined strategy. The J.League was formed as recently as 1992 but has developed into a tournament of world renown and, as discussed in episode 37, is looking to dominate its continent.
Vissel Kobe joined the top Japanese football league in 1997 and have been out of it for only two seasons ever since. In recent years they have signed a host of famous players including Andreas Iniesta, Lukas Podolski, David Villa and Thomas Vermaelen, some of whom helped them lift their first major trophy in 2019.
Ken Lambert works in the PR and digital department at Vissel. In this episode we discuss communication strategy, the differences between Europe and Japan, why the club are among the leaders on social media in the J.League, dealing with high-profile foreign players, Covid-19 and competing in the AFC Champions League.
Roddy McDougall: Is there life left in British speedway?
The decline of UK speedway in the past 40 years is worthy of close examination. In the 1970s and early 1980s, it was billed as Britain's second most popular spectator sport. Now, bar a dwindling yet devoted hardcore, it seems to have entirely lost its mainstream appeal. Some believe it is as close to death as any professional sport could ever come in the UK.
The sports business world often discusses the possibility of a sport 'dying' if it fails to change and modernise. But why did this happen to speedway in particular? What lessons are there for modern sports? Was a media deal pivotal? What structural problems did the sport have? And, most importantly, does speedway's European success give hope for the future?
I spoke to Roddy McDougall, journalist and author of a book on UK speedway's recent travails to examine the issues behind them.
Mario Leo: Sportsbiz, digital and the need for New Year resolution
Sports digital media is full of loud voices with little to say. Mario Leo is the opposite. The founder and CEO of Result Sports is one of Europe's leading experts on social media strategy and metrics. He also has firm views on ways the sports industry should try to monetise existing audiences and look to engage new ones. Mario and I have shared an hour on this podcast for the last four New Years. But the effect of the pandemic makes this conversation very different - some things will be changed forever, some will never come back and some will be accelerated. We discuss why 2021 is a crucial year for the future of sports business.
Rich Luker: How to foresee the future of sports fans
Rich Luker is a pioneer in the research of sports fans. For a quarter of a century, he has been asking them questions and analysing their answers, first as ESPN Sports Poll now as Luker on Trends.
His views on the future of the industry may be strong but they are based on a vast amount of rich, longitudinal data.
Even before the pandemic, Luker was hammering US sports owners to concentrate on creating meaningful relationships rather than merely transactional ones.
In its wake, he will be beating that drum even louder.
Grant Wahl: Covering soccer in the USA
Grant Wahl is perhaps the most respected journalist working in US soccer today.
During his two decades covering the sport Stateside, Wahl has seen the men's national team gain tangible popularity, the women lift the World Cup on numerous occasions and a stable domestic league garner global respect. All were unprecedented.
Having myself spent two seasons in Major League Soccer, the enthusiasm at the grassroots level is clear. Translating that into a truly world-class professional league is not so easy, especially as the major names of Europe are widely shown on television, touring regularly and starting to make in-roads into the American market.
In this podcast, we discuss all of these issues and more.
Andrew Ryan: Running FIBA Media
The origins of FIBA go back almost 90 years and it has been organising a basketball World Cup since 1950 but only in the last decade has the federation truly obtained a prominent global profile.
Last year's World Cup enjoyed a television reach of 3bn. The victorious Spanish side took 45 per cent of their nation's active television audience when they beat Argentina in the final. The success of the tournament in China and elimination of holders USA at the quarter-final stage showed there is life in basketball outside the NBA and the sport is unequivocally the global No2 behind football.
Content has been at the heart of FIBA's recent growth, as exemplified by an astounding 1.5bn video views on social media at the World Cup. Andrew Ryan is MD of FIBA Media, he explained their approach to content, broadcast properties, OTT, personalisation and data, influencers and esports
Customer ReviewsSee All
Informs, educates, entertains
This podcast is always an enjoyable and insightful listen, and I'd happily recommend it to anybody else who's involved in running a sports club (or indeed to anyone with an interest in how they're run). I found recent episodes with Jon Lansdown and Mads Davidsen particularly interesting.
Henry Winter Podcast
Great podcast with a diverse range of guests. Really useful for anyone looking to go into the industry of sports journalism or branding, or just further their knowledge of the importance of digital platforms within football. Look forward to hearing from more guests in future podcast.
Henry Winter: Social media and sports journalism
A brilliant podcast that gave me a lot of insight and ideas to how to develop content and forge a following through social media. As a journalist myself I’ve admired Henry’s work for a long time, and was also fascinated to hear about Richards role in directing the content at my club Arsenal.
Really looking forward to hearing more episodes in the future around the themes of sports journalism in the digital landscape and new age media.