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Advice Jul 30, 2015

Five ways to get your soccer organization in the news and on social media

Anyone who’s been paying any attention to the youth soccer landscape over the past five years should know that things are changing very fast. Now more than ever, soccer clubs, leagues, and tournaments need to be going WAY beyond just having a website and posting administrative data!

They NEED to be constantly building their brand, serving their customers, and promoting their product… or risk having none of the above left before the next World Cup.

As we work every day with youth soccer clubs, leagues, and tournaments, we see a huge contrast in how each of the above approach getting good news about their organization out to the community.

Some are really savvy, with great looking websites that have quality images, date stamps, and writing according to AP Style Book standards that even old school journalists would have trouble faulting. They have multiple, active social media accounts. And they have easy to find and up-to-date “About us” sections and social media profiles.

Others… have the same website one of their volunteers built for free on a Sunday afternoon back in 1999 using Microsoft FrontPage… and haven’t posted anything other than registration links since.

It should be pretty easy to tell which ones have a better chances of communicating effectively to the soccer community…. And it’s not about just bragging and brand building! Communicating well in this day and age should flat out be an obligation of every youth sports organization – especially the clubs.

Parents (e.g. The club’s CUSTOMER) deserve more efficient communication about logistics and information requirements.

While players (e.g. The club’s PRODUCT) deserve to have all the support their club can muster to help them achieve their goals – which more and more players these days certainly feel involved college soccer – or even higher.

For tournaments and leagues, logistical information communicated well should be an absolute minimum standard due to the critical nature of traveling plans and weather. But many struggle here a-is, and are missing numerous opportunities to just make their member teams feel welcome and wanted.

Whether your soccer organization is good at communicating well already or not, we here at SoccerWire.com still want to share your clubs’ good news with the community ourselves… so here are five way you can help us, help you…

1- Press Releases
They take time and professional help in most cases, but when properly prepared for the right topics, and then distributed with care, a Press Release can not only be the fastest way to get your news on SoccerWire.com, it can also get your organization in a plenty of other media outlets too!

A GOOD press release is “ready-to-print” following the standards of the news industry.

A BAD press release reads like a marketing flyer, makes claims not backed up by sources or references, and doesn’t follow any standard journalistic style guide. They usually have ALL CAPS headlines and start with “The [insert organization name here] is proud to announce…”

Send you press releases (or have your PR firm do so) to [email protected]… preferably with a custom note at the top with why you think it’s relevant to our primary audience and with a good photo and logo of your organization.

2- Alert us to posts on your Website 
Whether they got there via a press release or they’re just two sentences about a player making an ODP roster or a new field opening, if it’s on your website with a unique link, odds are much higher that we’ll at least link directly to it in a future issue of one of our regional email newsletters. Your chances of that happening get even better if you post these on your site WITH A DATE so we know it is current AND that we haven’t already shared it.

If you’re a Premier Club Partner, we should pick it up automatically when one of our editors makes his or her weekly visit to your website. If you’re not a PCP, then send us a note with a link via email to [email protected] or tweet it too us (see #5 below). If your website has RSS feed capability (most newer ones do without you even realizing it), let us know and we may add that to our watch lists if you have an active website.

3- Send us a Tip – Exclusives preferred…
If you alert us to something really cool/newsworthy that has happened with any connection to your organization, or will in the relatively near future we may assign a journalist to cover it and write / post an original story on SoccerWire.com, link in our newsletters, and/or share on social. There’s no better news than this – the kind you don’t have to write for yourself in any way. Note: Only send exclusive tips to [email protected] (so our competitors don’t see it over social media first).

4- Partner with us on “editorial content”
A new focus for SoccerWire.com in 2015 and the future is a commitment to provide more “how to” articles that help the entire community. We’re especially interested in coaches sharing some of their favorite practice ideas for specific technical or tactical work. We’re also looking for administrative “best practices” such as sharing ways to research teams for tournament acceptance, or how to organize volunteers for jersey distribution day! We want coaches and administrators to give us advice like this to share with our readers, and when we do, we’ll certainly profile that person and their clubs front-and-center in the post to our audience.

5- Share social media “@” SoccerWire accounts
Twitter @TheSoccerWire for nationally relevant youth soccer content, @PSWire for youth soccer content with specific local ties to the DMV, @TSSWire for youth soccer content with specific ties to the Tri-State region of CT/NJ/NY, @SocBizWire for any and all “Soccer Business” related news such as hirings, field funds, partnerships, new sponsors… Facebook @SoccerWire and @PotomacSoccerWire are also options. We’re active on Social Media with all the above, and when clubs mention us, we engage back.

Hopefully this not only helps you get covered by SoccerWire more, but also just helps your organization in general with all your communication. If you’ve got any other ideas or tips, feel free to use the comment section below!

 

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