Today We Are Social has launched We Are Social Sport in the UK, a dedicated team of sports specialists offering an experienced, social-first approach to sports marketing. Here, Gareth Leeding, Creative Director of We Are Social Sport, shares his thoughts on what has inspired the creation of the division.
Some of my first memories growing up are of watching sport. Whether it was meeting Ayrton Senna by chance at Silverstone, seeing Jurgen Klinsmann dive after scoring on his debut for Spurs or seeing Pete Sampras win at Wimbledon on TV; I’ve always wanted to be involved in sport.
Over the last five years at We Are Social I’ve been lucky enough to do this every day, working with brands like adidas, YouTube and DAZN. We’ve hit on a winning formula and built a talented team who have been rewriting the rules in sports marketing. And now it’s time to take our approach to a wider global audience of brands, icons and sponsorships, with the launch of We Are Social’s first ever division: We Are Social Sport.
Socially-led sports marketing is an area with huge potential. Sports sponsorship is growing, traditional viewing is declining and the major social platforms are aggressively going after live streaming rights. The world’s greatest sporting events are some of the most talked about moments online. Every game, match and meet inspires conversation and this presents an opportunity, but also a real challenge. It’s no longer enough for agencies just to be creative, they also have to understand the cultural relevance of sports to create something stand out which cuts through. Work like this:
Led by myself and Director Joe Weston, our team of sports journalists and writers, strategists, creatives, content creators and producers have been a part of World Cups, Olympics, Champions Leagues and Grand Slams. We’ve helped redefine everything from football transfers and sponsorship activations to how sports clubs and federations are set up to win in social. Whether it’s a pitch, court, field or boardroom, we know the industry inside out and we’re able to spot opportunities no one else can. We’ve already helped adidas transform into one of the most sophisticated publishers of content in the industry, gaining recognition from the likes of Cannes, Eurobest, BT Sports Industry Awards, and more in the process.
We Are Social Sport is already off to a flying start, representing We Are Social’s existing sporting portfolio which includes adidas and DAZN, as well as sport-focused briefs for consumer brands such as Playstation and Gatorade.
With a growing portfolio of global, forward-thinking clients, we’re ready to rewrite the rules of sports marketing again and again. In a saturated environment full of lazy creative following trends, rather than starting them, we’ll be producing work that creates fame, delivers results and most importantly, is effective. This is what really excites me about We Are Social Sport.