Mike Koeshartanto

Celebrating Youth Soccer Month

Did you know that September is Youth Soccer Month in the U.S.? If you weren’t aware, this month (September 2015) marks the thirteenth year of national programming from US Youth Soccer designed to raise awareness of youth soccer and the benefits of playing the game. I’d like to take this opportunity to highlight Youth Soccer Month and also showcase a few brands that are active in the youth soccer space.

YSMThere are four key themes that make up the primary message of Youth Soccer Month: fun, family, friendship, and fitness. Each of these themes is celebrated for one week of the month to show that soccer can be easy and rewarding, bring families closer together and create lasting memories, as well as illustrate the health benefits of playing.

To help promote these ideas, US Youth Soccer has set up various events, including Street Soccer Day on Sept. 2nd and Make Your Own Ball Day on Sept. 17th. MYOBD is particularly interesting because it allows kids and adults to be creative and design their own ball, promoting, among other things, appreciation for what they have instead of what they do not. In addition, several college soccer events are scheduled across the country where spectators can win various prizes.

PledgeLiberty Mutual has joined the Youth Soccer Month fun and declared September Sportsmanship Month to celebrate and spread the word about the importance of playing soccer the right way. To encourage parents and coaches to make a commitment to sportsmanship, Liberty Mutual has set up a website where people can take a Play Positive Pledge. Teams that pledge between Aug. 15 and Oct. 15 are eligible for the chance to win one of ten $2,500 grants to encourage a commitment of sportsmanship to the sport, their teammates, opponents, and officials.

To learn more about Youth Soccer Month visit YouthSoccerMonth.org or follow activity on Twitter and Instagram using the #YSM2015 hashtag. US Youth Soccer will also be running daily giveaways via their Facebook page (Facebook.com/USYouthSoccer).

MakeThe appeal for corporate brands to connect with the youth soccer audience extends beyond Youth Soccer Month. Two brands that have been active in the youth soccer space are Kohl’s and Nesquik.

This is the tenth year that Kohl’s has served as an official sponsor of U.S. Youth Soccer. One of their most visible partnership activations is the Kohl’s American Cup, the largest traveling recreational tournament in the country. These tournaments, held nationwide, provide youth players an opportunity to experience a tournament in a family-friendly and supportive atmosphere. By the end of 2015, there will have been 40 Kohl’s American Cups from Texas to North Dakota, and Massachusetts to California.

QiukFrom Kohl’s we move to every kid’s favorite drink – chocolate milk. Nesquik is the official post game drink of U.S. Youth Soccer and AYSO and has built an education platform to promote chocolate milk as a means to help athletes recover following soccer or other physical activities. The Nesquik story spotlights three main building blocks of recovery: nutritional recovery, physical recovery, and mental recovery. To help promote the campaign, Nesquik has partnered with former U.S. Men’s National Team player Alexi Lalas and current U.S. Women’s National Team player Sydney Leroux. Activation tactics include on-site presence at youth events, digital content and social media engagement, and retail integration.

Categories: Domestic, Featured, Youth Soccer