Liverpool 2012-2013 Kits: The Dawn of a New Era

Hi everyone,
Busy few days kept me away from writing about what happened in football marketing recently. Let me start with the launch of the Liverpool 2012-2013 kits. One of the most popular piece on my blog is about the potential 2012-2013 LFC kits. Well, I was not far off from the truth.

Daniel McLaren from The UK Sports Network wrote about Gerrard’s club kits launch, and it sums up very well how Liverpool launched their 2012-2013 kits on a marketing and social media standpoint.

Last Friday saw Liverpool FC launch their new kit.  Actually it was more than a new kit launch as it saw the dawn of a new era in terms of their kit with new manufacturers ’Warrior’ – a US company founded by a former Lacrosse player, acquired by sports giant New Balance in 2004.

This is their first foray into football with their specialism coming from lacrosse (obviously) and ice hockey.  So it was always going to be important to shake off the shackles of previous incumbents adidas, who had been making the kits since 2006, by making the first kit launch an impressive one.

Here is what Paul Rogers (LFC’s Head of Content) “When we sat down to work out our content plan around the ‘reveal’ of the new LFC kit, social media was at the forefront of our thinking. We know from past experience that kit reveals generate enormous excitement amongst fans and we wanted to reach out to and engage with as many supporters as possible when the clock struck midnight.

With our last  kit launch in the summer of 2011, we used our own official website, TV channel, Twitter and Facebook accounts to create a buzz but even in 12 months, things have moved on a lot. This time around, we were keen to maximise the reach of all of our social media channels including our new YouTube channel as well as Pinterest and Tumblr”

The club and Warrior launched the usual video to accompany the launch showing some behind the scenes shots of the photo shoot, interviews/quotes from players and pictures of the new kit.  

The players appear to be happy with it (no surprise there) as it brings back the gold into the kit so its a bit of a throwback to the 1970′s/1980′s in that sense.  It also appeals to the die-hard fans with a tribute to the 96 fans who lost their lives in the Hillsborough Distaster in 1989 with the inclusion of the number on the back of the shirt.

Interestingly in the video it shows an integration with a bigger campaign by the inclusion of the #LFCkit tag, encouraging fans to talk about it on twitter and talk to other fans. So far the video has gained 61k views since its launch at midnight last night.

The new kit sponsors also released their own video showcasing their ‘expect us’ activation today as the push to link the club and brand starts with a vengeance.  

It is pretty cool and offered a teaser to the fans as they walked past the ground by projecting images of the players and the brand tag line onto a wall.  With £25m a year being paid to the club we can expect much more of this with a hefty marketing spend to back it up. [Source: UKSN]

New era with Warrior marked a fantastic launch for their major asset. Something worth mentioning is the fact that the livebird replaces the traditional Liverpool crest.

Not sure what the fans think about it, but from my point of view, I think it brings a classy touch to the kit.

What do you guys think?

Karl Lusbec

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