Goa, October 2021: Indian football Club FC Goa has seen a strategic shift in its social media narrative by weaving pop-culture into its storytelling approach.
Clever intersections between pop-culture, lifestyle - movies, shows, music, dance, iconic characters in mass media, past, present and upcoming - and football (after all, football is at the heart of it all) have yielded some brilliant storytelling and moment marketing capsules.
And these, in turn, have yielded exponentially high views and shares, laughter and conversation and notably a record high of new audiences and new perspectives to weigh in on a sport that can often seem inaccessible/ elusive to a "non-fan". Not to mention, a new sense about what Goa represents beyond the usual - a hope for Indian football.
Speaking on the same, FC Goa’s Vice President - Strategy, Ravi Puskur said, “We have always looked to innovate. We constantly look to push the boundaries and find out for ourselves, what works and what doesn’t. That now reflects in our communication as well.
“What we have done now is, we have upped the ante as far as creating conversations beyond the realm of pure football, technicalities and football fans, is concerned. All in a bid to create mass appeal for a sport that more than deserves its due, not just in Goa where it is already a homegrown, culturally embedded sport, but in India at large where it needs to be platformed and represented as a viable prospect on the international stage.”
Being ‘social’ on social media
Everyone loves Goa. And Goa loves football. This is none the more evident than on FC Goa's social media which has always celebrated its players, coaches and attacking/ assertive brand of game play.
In the age of ‘all things content’, the Gaurs (as famously nicknamed after Goa’s state animal) have basically rediscovered this by doing the simplest thing - being ‘social’ on social media.
FC Goa’s new shift was evident in their recent ‘Durand Heist’ campaign, which turned out to be a winner as the team went on to win the coveted trophy taking down Kolkata based Mohammedan Sporting in a fiercely fought final.
The campaign connected with fans with the team aligning its squad announcement with the launch of season 5 of the popular TV Series, ‘Money Heist.’ Juan Ferrando, the Spanish head coach was positioned as ‘El Professor’ masterminding their heist in Asia's oldest running tournament. The club went on to win the coveted trophy much to the delight of fans who celebrated the ‘heist’ on social media platforms.
The successful Durand Heist campaign saw a series of teasers and reels in the inimitable ‘Money Heist’ style featuring the masks, whiteboards and a mood of mystery.
The Money Heist treatment continued for the kit launch with fans sparking conversations and jerseys being added to the e-cart on the club’s online store.
“The impact of the new shift is immediately visible,'' admits Puskur. “Eyeballs on the social media pages have increased dramatically with ‘reach’ and ‘interaction’ going up by 124% and 69% respectively on Instagram alone. Not just that but 70% of the reach on the platform was from outside the club’s follower base indicating a keen interest.”
On Twitter, compared to the previous season’s opening campaign, impressions and mentions increased by 2x, while the website saw an increase in profile visits by 6.5x. Overall, FC Goa’s shares on posts grew by 2.5x compared to previous months thanks to the change in approach.
FC Goa has started the journey to reposition Indian football from the state of Goa. Now, as they showcase their vision through proof of concept, their hope is to enlist more voices into the conversation, fans old and new, to make football a national prerogative and not just an FC Goa one.