If you want to tap in to the real passion in the national game, you need to start thinking about engaging the grassroots as opposed to the ‘industry’ of the professional game.
But even better than that, our model drives cash in to the grassroots of the sport thanks to the fact that 51% of our advertising revenues is paid to the clubs who host the posters.
Our audience isn’t the prawn sandwich brigade (read this if you don’t know what I am going on about), it’s people who love the game so much that they pay to play it. It’s a chance to not only get your advertising messages in front of the right people (if you’re targeting men aged 18-34 that is) but in the right environment thanks to its exclusivity (only one advertisement per changing room so 100% share of voice), trusted nature (as the players know the advertisers are supporting their club financially, they tend to trust and support those brands in return) and contextual relevance (we, and therefore you, know why the audience is there, so you can tailor your message appropriately).
I started what was called then Grassroot Media after being made redundant in 2011 from Sky. This wasn’t as bad as it sounds as, thanks to Sky being really supportive to us as a team, it gave me the opportunity to sit down and really think about what I wanted to do. At the time I was involved in the running of a large cricket club in Essex which also had a very large football club attached to it.
Having worked in advertising since leaving school I knew the players and club members were a really attractive audience for advertisers (generally men interested in sport are difficult to target outside of TV sports channels) so came up with the idea of putting A3 sized posters in the changing rooms of clubs that wanted to earn some extra cash to help by not doing a lot of work. Everything was, and still is, completely zero cost to clubs.
I had never worked in posters/Out Of Home before, nor run my own business, but the idea and business were sound, so when I hit a bit of a wall after a few years (cash flow issues due to bad debt) I decided rather than go and find an investor to keep it going that I should go out and learn more about the poster market and expose myself to running more businesses.
Six years later and I’ve now worked at one of the biggest poster companies in the world, run the commercial side of two poster firms, and learned more about the sports marketing side of things through running the sales team of a business selling posters and other advertising rights at 50 professional football clubs – so now it’s time to really push the concept of engaging grassroots footballers and cricketers in a way I simply wasn’t able to before.
Number of venues: 130+
Number of posters: 410+
Monthly footfall: 80,000+
Monthly impressions: Over 600,000
Frequency of views per person per visit: 8+
Dwell time per person per visit: +/- 30 mins
Use it if…
You want gender targeting – we are able to offer a 100% male audience.
You only want to target adults – no problems with HFSS or gambling restrictions here, our posters are exclusively in adult/senior changing rooms.
You want you advertising to have some extra ‘feel-good factor’ – players know your advertising is supporting the club they love, and they are more likely to support the brands they see in return.
Case studies/ previous advertisers
DryWorld used the network to get their range of football boot accessories in front of people guaranteed to play the game
Screwfix regularly use the network to support local store launches and marketing efforts